Given Kylie Minogue’s penchant for high-camp costumes and reinvention, it’s easy to be cynical about her supposedly going country with an album partly recorded in Nashville, and a new look featuring cowboy boots and Stetsons. But to Minogue’s credit the story-telling focus of country music on new album, Golden works for someone who has lived a thousand lifetimes, by pop music standards, and recently endured a very public breakup.
For the most part the new sonic evolution suits her. ‘Dancing’ and ‘Raining Glitter’ meld dance-pop and country twangs in a way that feels fresh, while ‘Shelby ’68’ and ‘Radio On’ have a worn-in feel Minogue excels at. It doesn’t all land, at times the production grafts cheesy Europop beats over songs not suited to them, and fans looking for cool electropop Kylie may find this lacking. But as a showcase for her voice and skill at storytelling, Golden is a solid effort.