KYLIE. "Kiss Me Once"
Forty something. And Kylie still believes in love. No cycnicism, no broken hearts. Just endless songs of love. You have to admire someone so single minded, with just one thing, just one totem, one religion. The kiss. The heart. I suppose. But then again, Kylie's songs have never really been about anything, ever, have they? Not that I know of anyway. Always, forever, love. From I should be so lucky to the final moments of this - “Kiss Me Once” is an album where Kylie remains, as ever, utterly of the now ; a shopwindow of modern pop. And whilst “Into The Blue” is an autotuned slice of glory, some of the rest – the risibly titled “Sexercize” (for heavens sake!) is where K becomes not a leader so much as a follower : with modern production tricks and styles starting to obscure the admittedly one-dimensional content. Also, with so many producers and so many hands, the album lacks a definitive personality, being a compilation of songs from modern producers and writers, united by the common thread that is only Kylie's voice and her knack for picking an uplifting chorus to take us to the heavens. Sure they are great pop songs, they are tiny moments of uplifting hopeful paradise in a world that often falls short, but also, as with all her albums, the dominant personality is not really Kylie's, as she is a blank slate on which she projects her relatively simplistic hopes and fears. When she did depth and took more chances with “Impossible Princess” everyone rubbished her, and Kylie retreated into her pop coccoon. It's a beautiful place, but Kylie can't leave there now, forever trapped in wistful and young hopefulness. And since she is older now than the competition, and at 47, certainly aging with more grace and power than her faded peers (and nearest rival, Madonna), instead of looking at the glass half full, here we have K, the finest pop star of a generation, still doing what she does with far more grace and verve than almost everyone else.