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Kylie Minogue Ushers In Her New ‘Disco’ Era With Single ‘Say Something’
Throughout its history, pop music has often pulled influences from a variety of genres and incorporated them into songs in a way that was easily digestible (and more importantly, easily danceable) for listeners. It happened with disco as its era began to wind down at the dawn of the 1980s, and it’s happening with disco once again at the dawn of the 2020s: pop singers like Dua Lipa and Jessie Ware have tried their hand at putting a contemporary twist on disco this year by mimicking many of the genre’s rhythmic and production elements in their albums, while Sam Smith’s cover of Donna Summer’s 1977 hit “I Feel Love” released at the end of last year continues to be a part of this zeitgeist.
Aussie pop icon Kylie Minogue is the latest singer to throw her hat into the disco ring. Earlier this week, she revealed that her fifteenth studio album, simply titled Disco, would be released in early November, with the lead single “Say Something” available from last week.
Watch the video here.
Musically, “Say Something” takes a more mid-tempo route than the typically upbeat approach associated with classic disco music. The song’s creation process reunited Kylie with longtime collaborators Biff Stannard and Ash Howes (of Biffco fame) and producer Jon Green, who helped bring Kylie’s 2018 country-pop outing Golden to life. Unveiling the track in a BBC Radio 2 interview, Kylie says the song is “about all of our eternal quest for love and the searching and knowing that there's something or someone out there that you can relate to and makes you a better person.” As for the choice to release it as Disco’s lead single, Minogue felt that the emotional uneasiness of the current moment made it a natural choice that will allow listeners to get whatever they want out of it: “It felt like the one to go with first... There's a lot of room for emotion within [it], however you feel—whether you just want to shut your eyes and dance, or cry."
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to upend the music industry at seemingly every turn, Minogue knew she wanted to create new music to help her legions of fans through one of the most tumultuous times in modern history. Beyond that, however, she took the unprecedented situation as the perfect opportunity to teach herself new skills that she never learned despite her years as an industry veteran. She set up a makeshift studio at home and has been writing and recording Disco from the comfort of her living room, and is busy learning the ins and outs of Logic production software and how to engineer her own vocals herself. “It’s been a steep learning curve for all the team as there are technical obstacles to navigate, but I’m so thankful to be able to continue work on my album in this way,” she says of the endeavor.
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