Thursday, May 31st, 2012

Kylie Minogue – Timebomb

Insert easy joke about her career starting in black and white etc etc…


Anthony Easton: The woots are worth a few points, and the dance-as-post-apocalyptic-thought is always nice. I love “We’re on a time bomb/before the night’s gone/let’s just do it right now,” for the delightful lack of subtlety, and that instrumental break in the middle is amazing. And I love when people have longer careers than they have any right to. The score is mostly sentimental, but that’s OK.

Alfred Soto: Years into a career that in its last few has boasted more exuberant disco than Madonna’s squeezed past her abs, Minogue fingers a polyurethane casing and puts it on — a snug and not unattractive fit. Without thought, she’s the possessor of a squeak besotted with its own irrational exuberance.

Brad Shoup: “It’s not the end of the world,” goes the curlicued line. So Kylie didn’t get the memo. But then again, it’s the last dance and there’s explosives under the floor. Either way, it’s a grower: a sinuously sequenced pop tune with intimately-mixed vocals and a subtle modern-rock nod in that pre-chorus chug. Would’ve been a killer Eurovision entry.

Jer Fairall: Apocalypse-on-the-dancefloor, Kylie-style — but she’s always done euphoric better than aggressive, and the threatening tone feels a bit too much like the girl next door unconvincingly trying on goth makeup. The music bumps and throbs with the sensual menace she can’t quite pull off, though, and under the right (sweaty, drunken) circumstances, that’ll likely be good enough. 

Iain Mew: She did “Slow”, now here’s fast. She’s only got three minutes to save the world, except that there’s no saving to be done, so, might as well have fun in the meantime. Urgency is provided by the whoops and the the itchy synth riff which likes the way she moves. The single’s rush release seems about right – it’s the definition of a quick fix.

Alex Ostroff: I don’t want to say Kylie can’t do danger. After all, “Can’t Get You Out of My Head” had (and has), to my ears, a strange sense of creeping dread. Still, she can’t quite match the hunger and implied threat of the minimal electronic chug and bursts of guitar under the verses, undercutting the release that the chorus and its WOO!s want to be. Mechanical performance aside, it’s a catchy little number, and one that I’m almost certain will grow on me. 

Edward Okulicz: Everyone I know is saying this is Kylie by numbers. I reckon it’s Kylie doing Britney by numbers (this would fit on Femme Fatale easy) and the world needs a lot more of that. Really, it’s the first record she’s put out in years that would sound at home in a club sung by just anybody. Such denseness and frantic energy is a novelty for her, and it’s something that suits her well — and “Timebomb” has some fine gimmicks on top of that. “Wait,” she commands, while the bass squelches and every instance of the spliced “whoop!” makes this feel ever so slightly close to classic. It’s my favourite single of hers since “Love at First Sight.”

Ramzi Awn: “Timebomb” manages to sneak a few golden moments into what is largely a monotonous vehicle of buzzes and shoddy vocal production.  The froth that Kylie diehards are bound to love should be frothier, and the hooks more convincing.  Besides being a superfluous addition to the already trite canon of tick-tocking doomsday bangers, the fabric and melody of “Timebomb” feel unnecessary as well — neither complementing a current sonic landscape or creating a new one.  

Katherine St Asaph: Kylie has tenser songs, prettier and airier songs, and more forgettable songs (many of which were on Aphrodite), but at least right now, I can’t think of many with a better chorus.

Jonathan Bogart: She’s never had the culture-warping powers that Britney did just by existing, so her ode to the apocalypse isn’t anywhere near as magisterial; but because she’s never had the force of personality to wrap the culture around herself and wear it like a shawl, she can glide over the present pop moment where Madonna clumsily founders. “Timebomb” fits slightly better into current UK trends than into current US trends (which was always true of her work), but if some bright-idea DJ slaps an unnecessary RedOne synth-blast hook on it somewhere, it could rule the summer here too.

2 Responses to “Kylie Minogue – Timebomb”

  1. Would have rated this a [7], just couldn’t think of an angle.

  2. I felt the exact same way, Sabina. It gives off very strong Robyn c. Body Talk vibes, but of course, Robyn c. Body Talk wouldn’t exist without Kylie c. Fever. It’s like my grandmother making cookies with my mom’s recipe when she’s the one who taught her how to knead dough and wield a rolling pin – uh, or something like that. [7]!