Kylie Minogue, KISS ME ONCE (deluxe)

Except for The Abbey Road Sessions, Kylie Minogue has always been a pop princess, mixing dance and disco to create her own songs about falling in love and hitting the dance floor.  Kiss Me Once (deluxe version) follows this formula pretty closely, and it works as much as it doesn't.

Kiss Me Once is relentlessly upbeat (except for the my-man-cheated song "Sleeping with the Enemy").  Many of the songs are about love, whether it's a long-standing romance (her duet "Beautiful" with Enrique Iglesias), falling in love ("kiss me once/and you will watch me fall/kiss me twice/and I will give you my all"), or the power of true love ("If Only").  Kylie also sounds pretty randy throughout Kiss Me Once, as evidenced by several songs ("Sexy Love," "Sexercise," "Les Sex") and not-so-subtle lyrics ("Hey Hey Mr.President/I'll be your Marilyn").

As with previous albums, there are times Kylie gets overshadowed by synthesizers and electronic gimmicks that feel generic.  At the same time, a lot of the songs on Kiss Me Once make it into the "fun fluff" category, where Kylie's voice shines through or she seems to be having so much fun we don't mind that she's not taking herself seriously.  Kiss Me Once is a likable pop album that is far from deep or consistent, but there's a bit to enjoy.  (The deluxe version has two new songs and a dvd with a music video and several behind-the-scenes features.)

Overall grade: B-
Reviewed by James Lynch

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