Monday, 11 January 2010

2000 Kylie Minogue: Spinning Around

I will be the first to admit that I've not had many kind words to say about Miss Minogue to date, but I'm happy to stand by all that I've written; Minogue and her opportunistic honk have enjoyed success in the form of a number of hit singles I sometimes find literally too painful to listen to. Her last entry on these pages 'Tears On My Pillow' is a prime example of everything that was wrong with her output that traded on soap opera stardom rather than any natural talent - there'd be tears on all our pillows if we had to listen to this to excess. Ah but 1990 was a long time ago now and sometime during the intervening decade Kylie had crept off to the crossroads at midnight to get credibility lessons from the devil in exchange for her immortal soul - how else to explain the sudden appearance of something as good as 'Spinning Around'?

Well that would be a nice legend anyway, and even though Kylie does her best to back me up with her "I'm through with the past, isn't no point in looking back, the future will be. And did I forget to mention that I found a new direction", it's sadly all a bit fanciful. Because she hasn't really been away and her direction toward the more palatable wasn't new. Granted, there have been no number ones, but her presence in the top ten has been a constant and a glance at her nineties discography shows a growing maturity and better grip on quality control in terms of what was released in her name. 'Better The Devil You Know', 'Shocked' 'Confide In Me' - all were all leagues ahead of the 'I Should Be So Lucky' pop pap and all would have been worthy chart toppers in their own right.

The work of four writers, 'Spinning Around' continues the upward trend and handily re-enforces my earlier comments about a good song not requiring any particular artist to bring it to life. 'Spinning Around' was originally planned as a Paula Abdul (one of the writers) comeback single, but it's hard to imagine that she could have done a better (or worse) job than Kylie; as a song, 'Spinning Around' is prime seventies disco overlain with contemporary electronica to neuter the cheese to create a Formula One racing car that drives itself.

Wisely, Kylie knows a gift horse when she sees one and doesn't treat the song like she's the bigger star of the two, choosing to settle into the dance groove to let it carry her instead of forcing herself over the top like mustard on cream. Not that it gives her much opportunity to do her own thing anyway; 'Spinning Around's air glide sparkles like Kylie's hotpants as it slides from verse to chorus and back again with nary a chance to catch breath. But despite her deference to the quality of the song, her "I'm spinning around. Move out of my way" are delivered as defiant statements of intent that brook no disagreement and perfectly catch all the hedonism and all the fun of disco's glory years. "I know you're feeling me, cause you like it like this" - yes Kylie, I am and I do. Well done.

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