Kiss Me Once (Special Edition)
With her usual diva flair, Kylie Minogue soars high on Kiss Me Once, an album that’s both sonically au courant and firmly rooted in her dance-princess past. For her 12th studio album, the Australian pop chanteuse enlists a bevy of A-list producers, including Pharrell Williams (fresh off his success with Daft Punk), Ariel Rechtshaid (Haim), and the electronica duo MNDR. The whoosh and throb of techno anthems like “Into the Blue” and “Fine” achieve a grandeur that matches their self-empowering lyrics. On “If Only,” Minogue reaches for divine love amid angelic swirling synths. Desire of a more carnal sort is celebrated in “Sexercize” (a sweat-raising track with a growling bottom groove) and “Les Sex” (hard-pumping and full of wink and slink). Both extremes come together on the Williams-produced “I Was Gonna Cancel,” a neo-disco effusion matching a frisky beat with thoughtful content. “Beautiful”—a duet with Enrique Iglesias—is the album’s standout ballad. Minogue never loses her sense of self amid these sonic costume changes, maintaining her consummate poise and essential sweetness whether the mood is funky, frenetic, or exalted.