Everything Is Beautiful - Reflecting on Kylie Minogue's 'Aphrodite' 1

Everything Is Beautiful – Reflecting on Kylie Minogue’s ‘Aphrodite’

Back in the 1990s, I was taking part in a pub quiz where, for one of the rounds, you had to write and then perform a Valentine’s Day poem to whichever celebrity you chose. Obviously I chose Kylie Minogue. I can’t remember the entire thing but I do know that the line “my heart is a-pounding and nothing can dull it, ’cause I even liked you when you had a mullet” caused the whole pub to erupt in laughter and effectively won my team the quiz.

The point I’m trying to make here is that Kylie has ALWAYS had something special about her – Pete Waterman said he knew it, as soon as she walked into the studio for those first sessions. Nick Cave obviously knew it, one of many fascinating twists in career of the ‘impossible princess’. Hell, I even have two gay friends who admit that even they are drawn to her, both as a performer and physically! I’m not even kidding.

And of course, we here at God Is In The TV have watched in awe as she has emerged, chameleon-like, from each musical epoch, always triumphant, unfailingly glamorous at every turn, commanding the stage – and her audience – like few performers can.

So it was a no-brainer for us to dedicate an entire week to this wonderfully talented performer. That starts on Monday 4th July, but given that Aphrodite, Minogue’s eleventh album, was released exactly twelve years ago today and surely ranks as one of her best records, we thought we’d give you a little preview.

If ever there was an album that flowed sublimely, it’s Aphrodite. You’ll already know the sultry ‘All The Lovers‘, which shamefully remains the last Kylie single to make the top ten despite several since that ought to have been deemed club classics, and its follow up number 12 hit, the grand sounding ‘Get Outta My Way‘, a disco colossus of a record, but guess what? There are even better songs on Aphrodite than those two, starting with that stunning title track halfway through.

With a Pet Shop Boys style production, Kylie delivers the thrills here with aplomb. A perfect pop gem, the rhythmic juxtaposition with Minogue’s almost rapped vocal is simply exquisite and elevates ‘Aphrodite‘ to one of the best tracks of her career. Credit to Nerina Pallot too, who was largely responsible for writing it.

The key to Kylie’s success though, even more so than her glamorous beauty, her captivating onstage presence and her silver-tongued delivery, is her smartness, as evidenced here by her choice of both producer and collaborators. Stuart Price was a flawless decision behind the control desk, always keeping things moving and different enough to keep the listener enthralled. And when you have the likes of Calvin Harris and Jake Shears penning songs for you, on ‘Too Much‘, well, it’s only ever going to be an out and out triumph. And so it proves, old school dance beats shimmying deliciously with the new, creating a real album highlight.

For my money though, the standout track is one that Kylie Minogue herself wrote with Price. Fabulous early eighties style synths collide majestically with the dancefloor on ‘Illusion‘ before another Pallot penned tune, ‘Better Than Today‘ comes in like Sugababes meets Aneka, which is insanely catchy and far better than you might anticipate.

Yes, Aphrodite was the sound of a pop legend knowing exactly what she wanted and delivering it in spades. It might even be the strongest record in her armoury.

God is in the TV is an online music and culture fanzine founded in Cardiff by the editor Bill Cummings in 2003. GIITTV Bill has developed the site with the aid of a team of sub-editors and writers from across Britain, covering a wide range of music from unsigned and independent artists to major releases.