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‘Kiss Me Once’: A Track-By-Track Guide To Kylie Minogue’s Eclectic Album
Associated Press / Alamy Stock Photo
List & Guides

‘Kiss Me Once’: A Track-By-Track Guide To Kylie Minogue’s Eclectic Album

An eclectic album packed with fabulous pop, ‘Kiss Me Once’ deserves repeat adoration, as proven by this track-by-track guide to its 11 songs.

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Twelve albums in, any artist might find themselves seeking a creative strategy that satisfies all urges. Kylie Minogue’s Kiss Me Once album, is packed with fabulous pop tracks, and the “Princess Of Pop”’s determination to work with the best songwriters on the planet took her in several different musical directions, so the collection’s eclectic character should be seen a strength. But at the time of the album’s release, on 14 March 2014, promotion and radio programming were becoming more segmented, and Kiss Me Once somehow became one of the most overlooked releases in Kylie’s long career. And yet it is more than worthy of reappraisal, as proven by this track-by-track guide through the album’s 11 songs.

Listen to ‘Kiss Me Once’ here.

‘Kiss Me Once’: A Track-By-Track Guide To Kylie Minogue’s Eclectic Album

Into The Blue

Kiss Me Once’s lead single and a No.1 on the US dance chart, Into The Blue is a euphoric pop banger that earns a credit for Kelly Sheehan, who has crafted hits for Mariah Carey and Ne-Yo, and other stateside songwriters. A terrific start to the record, it places itself transatlantic – neatly distanced between Kylie’s more familiar Europop and the sound and tempo of hits that then dominated US Top 40 radio. It also smartly summarises Kylie’s career positioning at this point, with an eye on all markets.

Million Miles

The urgent Million Miles is a companion track to the sort of electro-pop sound that made such a success of 2001’s Fever album, riffing on chords that might easily have found a home on that record. There’s a breathless sensuality here, which Kylie exploits to further effect later on Kiss Me Once, and this track was serviced to radio in a bid to build some momentum into the project. Club success would have surely followed if a gang of remixers had been allowed to have their way with it.

I Was Gonna Cancel

A No.5 hit on the US dance chart, this Pharrell Williams composition and production stalled at No.59 in the UK, its performance one of the most startling “How so?” moments in Kylie’s career. There are echoes of Williams’ Nile Rodgers and Daft Punk collaboration, Get Lucky, which had recently turbo-charged the super-producer’s career, even if his personality perhaps vied with Kylie’s own on this strong song with solid production…

Sexy Love

Another gear-change is evidenced here, with Kylie revisiting the pop-dance formula that has made for so many of the best Kylie Minogue songs. There’s a dash of spice to liven things up (and things get far steamier on the next track), but Sexy Love is a decent album cut that could have appeared on any of Kylie’s records since her return to pop on the Light Years album. It builds nicely and, with the writing pedigree of contributors such as Wayne Hektor (Westlife; Billy Joel’s 2024 comeback single, Turn The Lights Back On) and Autumn Rowe (Ava Max), Kylie is in safe hands, serving up the sort of song that her fans love her for.

Sexercize

Executive producer Sia co-wrote Sexercize, which is perhaps the peak of Kylie’s sexual provocation across a career spanning almost four decades. Blending dubstep and other urban flavours, the set-up’s comparison to other cotemporary divas, such as Rihanna, is an obvious one, but no less appropriate for that. A video was filmed for the track, taking influences from another Australian pop act’s finest hour – the late Olivia Newton-John’s Physical. It’s an interesting outlier in Kylie’s long career.

Feels So Good

The only track on the record that was written by just one person, Tom Aspaul’s contribution to Kiss Me Once is a gem. The country influences that would dominate Kylie’s future studio collection Golden are evident on this languid shuffler, which comes complete with a gorgeous melody that’s truly infectious and suits Kylie’s pitch perfectly.

If Only

If Only takes things back to the dancefloor, but fast-forwards to that point in the evening when everyone’s rather ran out of steam and is looking for a lighter, less intense moment. The chorus is a real grower that captures the euphoric uplifts that Kylie has truly made her own, embedding those deep hooks that snag you without you ever really being aware. Anyone looking for a masterclass in this? If Only isn’t a bad place to start.

Less Sex

Despite (or perhaps because of) its title, Less Sex isn’t especially steamy, but it is a very riff-heavy electro-pop banger. It reminds the listener of the sort of single that Xenomania had routinely crafted for Girls Aloud, with American/Finnish production duo GoodWill & MGI perhaps lifting some DNA from that group’s Biology or The Show.

Kiss Me Once

Kiss Me Once’s title track was produced by the genius that is Jesse Shatkin, behind later hits for One Direction, Kelly Clarkson and, yes, Sia, and it could be the album’s single-that-should-have-been. The song has an urgent hook that really holds you at the sweet spot, and Kylie’s vocals are terrific.

Beautiful

Latin heartthrob Enrique Iglesias is no stranger to a duet, and his appearance on this midtempo ballad is evidence of the effort put in to make Kiss Me Once marketable across as many territories as possible. Featuring some nice production touches, the song also featured on Iglesias’ Sex And Love studio set.

Fine

The ever-reliable Karen Poole (with Chris Loco) steers this final hurrah, which makes for a very strong finish to an album that merits a last euphoric lift. Kiss Me Once’s highs are lofty, and Fine is more than fine. The fact that it features Kylie’s sole co-writing credit on the album also suggests that the “Princess Of Pop” perhaps had a better grip on what would work for her than much of the global writing talent that was out there in 2014.

Find out where ‘Kiss Me Once’ ranks among the best Kylie Minogue albums.

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