After more than three decades in the music business, Kylie Minogue is still trying new things. The Australian singer will soon have her own show in Las Vegas. Her so-called residency will take place from November to May in “Voltaire”, a brand new nightclub in the gambling and entertainment metropolis. This fits perfectly with the pop icon, who is known for glamorous appearances.

“Padam Padam” was the name of the first single, which you couldn’t resist after listening to it for the first time. The summer hit is an absolute catchy tune in the tradition of Minogue songs like “Can’t Get You Out Of My Head” or “Spinning Around” and her first top 10 success in her former adopted home of Great Britain since 2010 (“All The Lovers “). In Leicester, tens of thousands sang along to the disco anthem with its sexually charged lyrics (“I know you wanna take me home and take off all my clothes”). The word “Padam,” which describes the heartbeat, has been trending as a hashtag on social media for a long time.

Several radio stations in the UK are said to have initially refused to play the song. According to insiders, because Minogue, at 55, is too old for the target group, even if none of those responsible wanted to say so officially. The popularity on the Internet – the video went viral on Tiktok and Co. – and increasingly loud demands from fans finally brought the song to the radio. The LGBTQ community, whose icons the singer has long been one of, apparently also played its part.

As a pop star, Minogue still likes to play with her sexy image in a graceful way. She also shows this with the second single from her album. The title song “Tension” even goes one better when it comes to sex (“Oh, my god, touch me right there, almost there”). The electro dance song is reminiscent of the dance floor movement of the early 90s with its striking piano motifs. A hit not so much for mainstream radio, but more for sweaty dance floors – not just in gay clubs.

No clear direction

From the soap opera actress (“Neighbours”) to the pop star of the hit factory Stock Aitken Waterman (“I Should Be So Lucky”), Minogue has successfully reinvented herself several times, in the 90s even as a dark pop singer (“Confide In Me “), who was in the studio with Nick Cave (“Where The Wild Roses Grow”), then as a glamorous disco queen. In 2018 she even ventured into country territory on “Golden” before paying homage to the great disco divas of the 70s with “Disco”.

There is no clear direction on their 16th studio album. “Originally we had the 80s in mind, but things turned out differently,” she said in the “Rolling Stone” interview. “We decided there was no theme and that after ‘Golden’ and ‘Disco’ that would be quite refreshing.” What the songs have in common is that they are all danceable. The “Princess of Pop,” as she is often called in England, moves lightly between related genres.

“Hold On To Now” sounds like the sound of the 90s with trance elements. “10 Out Of 10” with the Dutch DJ Oliver Heldens also recalls the decade of Eurodance. On the other hand, “Things We Do For Love” and “You Still Get Me High” – with a wonderful saxophone – are catchy synth-pop songs with an 80s touch. This style, which is also known as New Retro Wave and was made popular by bands like The Midnight and Electric Youth, was recently discovered by pop stars like The Weeknd, Pink and Birdy. There’s also classic funk with “Hands” and “Green Light”, which isn’t quite as memorable, but is certainly enjoyable.

A taste of Las Vegas concerts?

It’s quite possible that the album also gives a foretaste of how Kylie Minogue will soon open her presumably spectacular Las Vegas concerts. The powerful EDM party anthem “Vegas High” in David Guetta style is a perfect show opener. The album closes with one of the best songs – “Story” is a gripping pop song with a driving beat and another catchy tune.

For “Tension”, Kylie Minogue worked with some of today’s most successful songwriters and producers, including Pete Rycroft aka Lostboy (Calvin Harris, Rita Ora, Shawn Mendes) and Ina Wroldsen (David Guetta, Britney Spears, Shakira). It paid off musically. “Tension” is an excellent pop album that puts you in a good mood and makes you want to dance, and not only “Padam Padam” will stay in your head for a long time. Kylie Minogue is cementing her reputation as a cross-generational pop queen who should not be written off under any circumstances.