Kylie Minogue (album)
|Studio album by Kylie Minogue|
|Released||19 September 1994|
|Studio||Sarm West (London), Axis Studios, Power Station, Whorga Musica (New York City)|
|Kylie Minogue chronology|
|Singles from Kylie Minogue|
Kylie Minogue (sometimes referred to as Kylie Minogue 1994) is the fifth studio album by Australian singer Kylie Minogue, first released on 19 September 1994, by Deconstruction, Mushroom, and Arista Records. It was her first studio album released after leaving PWL. Through her new deal, Minogue worked with new producers including Brothers in Rhythm, M People, Farley And Heller, Jimmy Harry and Ronin, among others.
Musically, the album varies many musical genres but stays in the pop music field. The album represented a new change in Minogue's music, working with more new jack swing, jazz, house, and techno sounds. It became the third studio album by Minogue to contain songs written by her. The main themes of the album concern love, with many of the sub-themes heading towards confession, infidelity, sex and lust. Examples of the themes come from singles "Confide in Me" and "Put Yourself in My Place", both surrounding the theme of love and honesty.
Upon release, Kylie Minogue received favourable reviews from most music critics. Many critics praised the direction of the album, who thought the midtempo songs were pleasing and praised Minogue's vocals and production. Kylie Minogue was a chart success, peaking at number three in Australia, and was certified Gold. It was equally successful in the United Kingdom, peaking at number four, and was certified Gold for shipments of 100,000 copies.
Three singles were released; "Confide in Me", the lead single from the album, became one of Minogue's most successful single releases, reaching number one for five weeks in Australia, number two in the United Kingdom and reaching number one in Israel, as well as charting well across Europe and the US dance charts. The second single, "Put Yourself in My Place", reached number eleven in both Australia and the UK. The song featured a popular music video directed by Kier McFarlane. "Where Is the Feeling?" became the third release and reached number 16 in the UK and number 31 in Australia. Minogue did not do an initial world tour or headlining tour to support the album and focused promotion on gigs and TV appearances.
Following a successful tenure under the helm of Stock Aitken Waterman at PWL, which had seen Kylie evolve from soap star turned pop star, to an internationally recognised recording artist and style icon, 1992 saw the release of Greatest Hits and a dissolution of her ties to the label. In the autobiographical Kylie: La La La, the book recounts Minogue's dissatisfaction with her output during the latter years of the partnership, as Stock Aitken Waterman reverted to "formulaic tunes of old" and by the time Let's Get to It (1991) came, "the magic [had] gone and the record sank quickly".
"At the beginning, even if they'd ever said, 'Kylie, what do you think?', I wouldn't have had a clue. Only toward the end did I have a clue, and by then I wanted to break free of the chains binding me. I was tired of being the SAW popstrel."
Minogue subsequently signed to indie label Deconstruction in early 1993, who promised creative freedom: "I liked [their] attitude, I quite liked their arrogance, and I liked the vision they had. [...] There wouldn't be much point in leaving PWL and going somewhere exactly the same, so it was a big change." Deconstruction was known for being an innovative figure in the dance scene–concurrently, it was "unheard of" for a mainstream pop artist to forgo a major label: "I was aware that it was being perceived as a bit of a radical move, which I loved."
As work began on her new music, an early meeting with Deconstruction took place concerning which direction Minogue intended to pursue: "We had two choices–to record pop songs that would sell, or to experiment, let me loose in a field and see what happens." Kylie was "a bit of a blank canvas in many ways as post-PWL, the world was her oyster," noted a producer on the album. The label was keen to take up different avenues with A&R Pete Hadfield's intent to push the boundaries, aware of the perception that Deconstruction would simply usher Kylie towards a more conventional approach to dance music.
Recording and development
In an attempt to extend herself as an artist, Minogue took an active role in planning the album and sought out a diverse group of collaborators to work with. They would be inline with what Hadfield referred to as "the re-engineering of Kylie Minogue". Quentin Harrison of PopMatters conveys that Kylie was to be "[rebranded] as a pop savant" with popular music at the time "rife with overlapping mainstream and underground talent." In an interview with NME, Keith Cameron wrote that Kylie "talks in the amazed tones of a blind child who has just rediscovered the gift of sight," in regards to the making of her album.
"It was just definitely time for more personal fulfilment. Having a chance to express myself and to have something I could call mine. I'm redoing a vocal next week–I never had opportunities like that before. I never heard the song before I recorded it! I'm actually going through what is normal for an artist. You write or if you're not writing the song, you contribute, involved at every step of the process."
Early recording sessions for Kylie Minogue took place in 1993 with Saint Etienne and the Rapino Brothers, which were ultimately fruitless as the material trod familiar ground and lead Minogue in the wrong direction. Bob Stanley of Saint Etienne later remarked that her camp "had no idea what they wanted, apart from being different from the SAW stuff," though he expressed his amazement at her "powerful" voice that was masked by SAW's double tracking. With the Rapino Brothers, Kylie had written eight songs and all but one–"Automatic Love"–were scrapped. The song was then passed to Brothers in Rhythm to rework in their style, giving Kylie her only writing credit on the album.
Pete Hadfield, Deconstruction A&R
Brothers in Rhythm, a duo consisting of Steve Anderson and Dave Seaman, were previously involved with Minogue through a remix of "Finer Feelings" from Let's Get to It (1991). When word came that Kylie had parted ways with PWL, the duo phoned Deconstruction co-founder Keith Blackhurst–despite no prior experience writing for others. Lunch was arranged and Minogue met the pair at DMC Studios in Slough, Seaman recounts: "We were just very much on the same page. I think at that point of her career her persona was bigger than the music and everybody was kind of willing her to make a more credible record. She had outgrown the pop music she had been making until then." Brothers in Rhythm were enlisted as the album's chief producers; her stylist William Baker expressed that the duo were aware of a crossover dynamic between pop and dance music and found Kylie to be the "perfect vehicle" for their hybrids: "Her vocal range and willingness to experiment musically meant that Steve and Dave could push the envelope further." Kylie would travel down from her residence of Chelsea over the course of the album's production; the first engagement resulted in "Confide in Me".
Jimmy Harry contributed "Put Yourself in My Place", written especially for Kylie, and "If I Was Your Lover" to the album; these would be the only entries to be recorded outside the United Kingdom. Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe, better known as Pet Shop Boys, were approached by Minogue's camp after the pair finished work on their 1993 album Very. Speaking to Attitude, Tennant states: "Well, we always had to work with Kylie, of course, because she’s such a trademark: Kylie!" They initially declined, being creatively spent, before writing a song that sounded like "Stock Aitken Waterman Kylie"–Tennant came to realise it was the exact opposite of her motivations behind the record. The demo to "Falling" was sent to Deconstruction nonetheless, where it was well-received by Minogue and given to Pete Heller and Terry Farley to rework: "It doesn't really have the same tune in it, for instance, and they haven't put the chorus in, but I suppose that's very modern."
AllMusic described the album as "still dance-pop, there's atmosphere and style in the songs that wasn't there on Let's Get to It. Definitely the start of the second phase of her career." According to Nick Levine from Digital Spy, "The Singing Budgie stretching her wings and finding she could soar. Kylie Minogue is a sophisticated, stylish dance record that tips its cap – oh-so-elegantly, of course - to everything from midtempo R&B to classic balladry to ambient chill-out to Middle Eastern pop to... erm... M People-produced piano house."
Taking on a more house music vibe, "Where Has the Love Gone?" features an effected keyboard over a nineties club beat. Lyrically, the song tells of Minogue seeking an answer for why her relationship failed. The next song, "Falling", features a dance-pop production with a synthesized and bass-heavy backing while Minogue's vocals are breathy with large amounts of echo. The song tells of how you can overcome your past and fall in love again. The closing track on the album is "Time Will Pass You By". This track revisits the acid jazz style with a prominent brass section over a rhythmic disco drumbeat. Lyrically, the song is about not taking life for granted and enjoying it to its fullest. For the album's Canadian release, Minogue recorded a franglais version of "Confide in Me", known as "Fie-toi à moi". It was released exclusively on the Canadian edition of the album which features different cover artwork.
"Confide in Me", the lead single from the album, became one of Minogue's most successful single releases, reaching number one for five weeks in Australia, number two in the United Kingdom and reaching number one in Israel. The song was accompanied by an infomercial-like video. The slow tempo dance track, written and produced by Brothers in Rhythm, features Minogue's vocals over layers of strings and drumbeats. The second single "Put Yourself in My Place" reached number eleven in both Australia and the UK. The song featured a popular music video directed by Kier McFarlane. Minogue recreated the opening sequence of the classic Jane Fonda film, "Barbarella" (1968) in the video, performing a slow strip tease inside a spacecraft.
The follow-up single to "Put Yourself in My Place" was initially planned to be "If I Was Your Lover". Originally mixed by Jimmy Harry, the track was remixed to give it a more urban appeal. The single was supposed to be released in the US first and then in the UK if the US release was successful. After the record contract for the US fell through, the UK single release was scrapped. Instead, "Where Is the Feeling?" became the third release and reached number 16 in the UK and number 31 in Australia. "Time Will Pass You By" was planned to be the final single from the album and remixes were commissioned; the Paul Masterson Mix being one of them. Instead, the collaboration with Nick Cave, "Where the Wild Roses Grow", was released in late 1995.
Kylie Minogue had received generally positive reviews from music critics, many praising the slow dance music. Chris True from AllMusic gave it a positive review. He said "Kylie Minogue's fifth album no longer featured the Stock-Aitken-Waterman production gloss and found the diminutive singer working with hip dance producers like David Seaman. From the first notes of the opener "Confide in Me", you know this is not the teen pop queen of old. Kylie Minogue (also note the use of her last name on the cover) wanted to sound grown up, and she pulls it off with ease. While it is still dance-pop, there's atmosphere and style in the songs that wasn't there on Let's Get to It. Definitely the start of the second phase of her career." He had highlighted "Confide in Me", "If I Was Your Lover" and "Automatic Love" as the album picks. Nick Levine from Digital Spy awarded the album four stars out of five. He wrote in his retrospective review;
|“||Cohesive, classy and – much like KM herself – remarkably unmarked by the passing years, this album seduced us like the high-end escort who knocked on our bedroom door bearing champagne, strawberries and an impressive selection of novelty condoms. On a more serious note, we can't end this Revisited without mentioning the quality of Kylie's vocals here – her early critics will have spat out their cappuccinos when they heard the way she grandstands on 'Automatic Love'.||”|
Kylie Minogue debuted at number three in her native Australia and in the United Kingdom at number four; resulting in the album being certified Gold. The album debuted at number thirty-nine on the Swedish Albums Chart.
Credits adapted from the liner notes of Kylie Minogue.
|1.||"Confide in Me"||Brothers in Rhythm||5:51|
|3.||"If I Was Your Lover"||Jimmy Harry||Harry||4:45|
|4.||"Where Is the Feeling?"||Brothers in Rhythm||6:59|
|5.||"Put Yourself in My Place"||Harry||Harry||4:54|
|6.||"Dangerous Game"||Brothers in Rhythm||5:30|
|7.||"Automatic Love"||Brothers in Rhythm||4:45|
|8.||"Where Has the Love Gone?"||7:46|
|10.||"Time Will Pass You By"||M People||5:26|
|11.||"Love Is Waiting"||Brothers in Rhythm||4:52|
|12.||"Nothing Can Stop Us"||Saint Etienne||4:06|
|11.||"Confide in Me" (French version)||Brothers in Rhythm||5:51|
|Special edition bonus disc|
|1.||"Dangerous Overture"||Brothers in Rhythm||1:20|
|2.||"Confide in Me" (Justin Warfield mix)||Brothers in Rhythm||5:27|
|3.||"Put Yourself in My Place" (Dan's Old School mix)||Harry||Harry||4:31|
|4.||"Where Is the Feeling?" (Acoustic version)||Brothers in Rhythm||4:51|
|5.||"Nothing Can Stop Us"||Saint Etienne||4:06|
|6.||"Love Is Waiting"||Brothers in Rhythm||4:46|
|7.||"Time Will Pass You By" (Paul Masterson mix)||M People||7:34|
|8.||"Where Is the Feeling?" (West End TKO mix)||Brothers in Rhythm||8:11|
|9.||"Falling" (Alternative mix)||8:40|
|10.||"Confide in Me" (Big Brothers mix)||Brothers in Rhythm||10:27|
|11.||"Surrender" (Talking Soul mix)||4:26|
|12.||"Put Yourself in My Place" (Acoustic version)||Harry||Harry||4:46|
|13.||"If You Don't Love Me" (Acoustic version)||Paddy McAloon||Brothers in Rhythm||2:10|
|14.||"Confide in Me" (French version)||Brothers in Rhythm||5:51|
Certifications and sales
|United Kingdom (BPI)||Gold||100,000^|
^shipments figures based on certification alone
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