Some Kind of Bliss
|"Some Kind of Bliss"|
|Single by Kylie Minogue|
|from the album Impossible Princess|
"Love Takes Over Me"
|Released||8 September 1997|
|Recorded||Mayfair Studios, London, England. 1997|
|Kylie Minogue singles chronology|
"Some Kind of Bliss" is a song by Australian recording artist Kylie Minogue from her sixth studio album, Impossible Princess (1997). The song was released on 8 September 1997, as the lead single from the album by Deconstruction Records. "Some Kind of Bliss" was co-written by Minogue with James Dean Bradfield and Sean Moore, with co-production credits by Dave Eringa. Backed by guitars, strings, and drums, it is an indie rock track. The lyrics revolve around being happy and away from family.
"Some Kind of Bliss" received mostly mixed reviews from music critics, some who highlighted the track as an album stand-out and praised the composition. However, some critics dismissed the production and single release. Released in Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom, it peaked at twenty-seven, forty-six, and twenty-two on the Australian Singles Chart, New Zealand Singles Chart and the UK Singles Chart, respectively. To promote "Some Kind of Bliss", Minogue performed the song on Top of the Pops, MTV and her Intimate and Live Tour. David Mould directed the song's music video, which featured British actor Dexter Fletcher as her lover. The video was positively received for the production.
"Some Kind of Bliss" was co-written by Minogue with James Dean Bradfield and Sean Moore, with co-production credits by Dave Eringa. "Some Kind of Bliss" is about her experiences away from people and feel that while they are “million miles away, [...] there's an ability to feel like they're with you.” It is Minogue's first co-written song to feature on an album since "Automatic Love" from Kylie Minogue. It is also Minogue's first co-written single. "Some Kind of Bliss" was originally written solely by Minogue, until Bradfield wrote lyrics to another song and combined elements from both lyric sets." Minogue felt the strategy was "interesting" and expressed her desire in doing it again.
Deconstruction planned to release a lead single in January 1997, but Hadfield was concerned with the quality of most of the songs. This led to the album producers to reproduce new music to make the album “perfect”, and a potential January release was postponed until May. The final results left Hadfield unimpressed and a May release and back-up September release were scrapped. Minogue was concerned about Deconstruction postponing the album and the single; “I've told not to be frustrated, but I was frustrated because the album should be out. The point of it is to get it out and maybe people will like it, they may love it or they might hate it, but it was in my hands.” Mushroom received distribution rights from Deconstruction to broadcast six of the twelve songs through Australian airplay, while Deconstruction issued an extended play with six tracks (both of which included "Some Kind of Bliss").
A midtempo indie rock song, "Some Kind of Bliss" was recorded in 1997 at Mayfair Studios, London, England with the Manic Street Preachers. She felt the sound of the track was a “good start” for Impossible Princess. It provides Minogue with an edgier sound, with guitars taking the place of the drum machine beats heavily featured on her earlier efforts. Several instruments including the bass guitar, acoustic guitar, drums, violins and trumpets are played through the song. Once Minogue heard the final result, she said “And the way this track "Some Kind of Bliss" starts, I said to myself ‘This is not a Kylie song.’ I could never imagine sounding that way.” Nick Levine from Digital Spy compared it with another album track "I Don't Need Anyone", describing it as “Motowny indie.”
Release and b-sides
"Some Kind of Bliss" was released on 8 September 1997 in Australia and New Zealand by Mushroom Records. It was released by Deconstruction in the UK. The single issued one CD single but in two formats; a jewel case and two card sleeves. Minogue's then-boyfriend Stéphane Sednaoui photographed the single cover art which features Minogue in a black and white close-up shot in the middle of an street. For the single's artwork, Minogue sported a dark, indie-rock image that was recognized on the "Did It Again" sleeve.
Minogue recorded two songs; "Limbo" and "Love Takes Over Me" served as b-sides to "Some Kind of Bliss". It was written by Minogue alongside British musician Dave Ball and Ingo Vauk. "Limbo" is a drum and bass track that includes heavy guitar riffs and drum beats. The lyrics describe Minogue's frustration that she could not see anyone outside a certain country due to bureaucracy laws. Written in Barcelona, Spain, the lyrics to "Limbo" were written in a different format but was never materialized.
The second track "Love Takes Over Me" was composed in two version; an edited version which is featured on "Some Kind of Bliss" and her 1998 single "Cowboy Style" single and the album version. The song was an outtake from the recording sessions and was not made available until the re-release off Impossible Princess in 2002, where it was featured on the additional bonus disc. The song was briefly featured on her Other Sides EP, but only limited amount of copies were issue in Australia in order to promote the parent album.
"Some Kind of Bliss" received mixed reviews from most music critics. Writing for NME, Ben Willmott called it “supremely irritating” and stated “Kylie belt's out the lyrics like she's reading from an autocue. Any soul is lost in a slurry of bought-in brass and a ropey guitar solo that's be more at home on a Shakin' Stevens record.” Conversely, Allmusic's Chris True had selected the song as an album stand out. Daily Vaults Michael R. Smith felt “"Some Kind of Bliss" is a surprisingly strong and straightforward rock song that was much maligned by the British press when it was first released”.
Online music critic Adrian Denning said that while Impossible Princess was taken as a misconception of "Indie Kylie", “Only the Manic Street Preachers tunes resemble indie, 'Some Kind Of Bliss'”. A reviewer from the magazine FasterLouder.com said that "Some Kind of Bliss" was “pure pop”. While reviewing her 2002 compilation Confide in Me, True stated “Impossible Princess, both of which found her stretching and growing beyond the pop princess image she had previously. Dark, noisy tracks like "Limbo," the trip-hoppy "Jump," and the more rock-oriented "I Don't Need Anyone" and "Some Kind of Bliss"—both of which were co-written by the Manic Street Preachers' James Dean Bradfield—found her trying on different styles to replace the bubblegum pop of the past.”
The song entered at twenty-seven on the Australian Singles Chart. The song fell to thirty-five the following week. After Minogue's follow-up single "Did It Again" was released in November that year, the song rose to thirty-five. "Some Kind of Bliss" stayed in the chart for six weeks and peaked at twenty-seven, her lowest charting lead single until it was surpassed by "Into the Blue" in 2014, which peaked at forty-six for a sole week. The song entered and peaked at number forty-six on the New Zealand Singles Chart for a sole week. This became Minogue's lowest charting single in New Zealand after her 1987 US single "It's No Secret".[A]
In the United Kingdom, the song competed against Elton John's single "Candle in the Wind". The Official Chart Company revealed that "Candle in The Wind" claimed more than 75% of the single sales of that weekend, which defeated Minogue's chance in achieving a high position or the number one spot. "Candle in the Wind" became the fastest-selling single in the UK, selling 658,000 copies in its first day of release, and over 1.5 million copies in its first week. The single remained at number one for 5 weeks, and it eventually sold 4.9 million copies in the UK, overtaking the 13-year-old record held by Band Aid's "Do They Know It's Christmas?". "Some Kind of Bliss" entered at number twenty-two on 20 September 1997. The result broke Minogue's consecutive top twenty hits and became her lowest solo single until "Better than Today", which charted at number thirty-two on 20 November 2011.
The music video was directed by David Mould and was shot in the Desert of Tabernas in Spain. The music video features Dexter Fletcher as Minogue's lover. The video is set in non-linear structure, as it opens with Minogue and Fletcher in a blue cadillac at a gas station, with Minogue staring inside the gas station while Fletcher sits in the car after being released from jail. Several scenes feature Minogue and Fletcher in different outfits in different areas, driving and running around a hotel. There are scenes with Minogue and Fletcher fighting, being happy and playing around in there hotel room.
During the bridge sequence, Minogue and Fletcher in front of a shop. Minogue seductively tries to distract the cashier outside by staring and posing at him, while Fletcher tries to steal money from the till. In the last scenes, Minogue is in another outfit trying to walk out of an alley with a bag of money, but sees a police car driving towards her and tries to walk off. Fletcher is caught by police and is escorted into the police car while yelling at Minogue. Minogue, who see the alteration, drives off with the money and looks back at Fletcher while driving down the street.
Idolator website created a list for Minogue's eight sexiest videos, and listed the video for "Some Kind of Bliss" as one of those eight. Robbie Daw said "There's something so casually sexy about this Bonnie and Clyde-themed video. Kylie spends a lot of time wearing skimpy denim dresses while dealing with the fallout from her criminal love interest." The public had voted in which Minogue's video was the sexiest. Conversely, "Some Kind of Bliss" was put in last place with 1% of the votes (15 votes).
To promote the single, Minogue performed the song on several televised shows. Minogue debuted the single live on the Australian morning TV show Hey Hey, It's Saturday. She received the opportunity to perform the single on MTV (Music Television) on 4 October 1997. Minogue went on to perform the track on TFI Friday and performed the track on the UK music television series Top of the Pops.
Minogue performed the song on the Intimate and Live Tour. The song was featured on the opening act for the tour and featured Minogue singing the track on stage, wearing a black long-collared shirt and three-quarter pants, similar to the costume off "Did It Again". Like the rest off the costumes on the tour including the performance off "Some Kind of Bliss", it features Minogue with a lot of "princess"-inspired outfits.
"Some Kind of Bliss" has been recognized by critics as Minogue's most "indie"-influenced song to date. The poor reception prompt Hadfield to release an apology to Minogue, blaming himself for not being in control of the promotion; “I loved her [Kylie's] voice, got on with her and I am embarrassed that I failed her.” Tom Parker, who wrote the liner notes for the 2003-release of Impossible Princess, had observed that critics slated "Some Kind of Bliss" due to Minogue's approach to “obtain lyrical and production credibility, which was overshadowed in whole.”
Minogue publicly commented “I think the static was that [Elton] had 75 percent of the sales that week, so mine didn't get off at a good start.” She went on to say “I've told not to be frustrated, but I was frustrated because the album should be out [...] The point of it is to get it out and maybe people will like it, they may love it or they might hate it, but it was in my hands.” She also felt guilt for parting with Stock Aitken Waterman after her production team with Deconstruction was not in good terms; she later commented that she departed on "good terms".
An insider for Deconstruction revealed that if sales did not increase, they would have immediately dropped her, but Minogue trying all ranges of musical genres and images lead to Deconstructions decision to allow her to go. Deconstruction Records had lost a strong profit from income sales of the album and Minogue did not enjoy this. Minogue contemplated retirement due to the overwhelming failure of the campaign, saying "I have no qualifications, what else am I suppose to do?"
Formats and track listings
These are the formats and track listings of major single releases of "Some Kind of Bliss".
Credits and personnel
The following people contributed to "Some Kind of Bliss":
- Kylie Minogue - lead vocals, backing vocals
- James Dean Bradfield - guitar, bass
- Nick Nasmyth - keyboards
- Sean Moore - drums
- Andy Duncan - percussion
- Kylie Minogue - stand-in
- Stephane Sednaoui - photographer
- Farrow Designs - design
|New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)||46|
|UK Singles (The Official Chart Company)||22|
- Up until 2004, the New Zealand chart scheme had changed from fifty positions to forty, after complaints against RIANZ (now known as Recorded Music NZ) were towards their similarity with the Australian Singles Chart positions. And, although "Some Kind of Bliss" is her lowest through the fifty positions (since her 1987 single "It's No Secret"), her current lowest charting single with the updated scheme is her 2007 single "2 Hearts".
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