‘Pop Precision since 1987’ is written on the cover of Kylie’s latest greatest hits album, and it couldn’t be more apt.
We’ve had thirty years of the Pop Princess blessing us with pure pop perfection, all starting from the fateful release of ‘Loco-Motion’. Since then, we’ve haven’t been able to get her out of our heads, and with ‘Step Back In Time: The Definitive Collection’, we celebrate all things Kylie.
For super fans and casual listeners alike, ‘Step Back In Time’ has something for everyone. It’s got all of her classic hits across the mammoth 42 tracks, opening with ‘Can’t Get You Out Of My Head’ and closing with the brand-spanking new track ‘New York City’ (more on that later). It explores all of Kylie’s massive smashes to her fan-favourites, such as ‘Time Bomb’ (which is honestly so underrated). Tracks from pretty much every album show up, making it a true celebration of Kylie’s 31 years in pop music.
From ‘Spinning Around’ to ‘Dancing’, the celebration of pop perfection personified hits all of the right notes, covering Kylie’s impressive three decades in the music industry without leaving you feeling over-encumbered. It’s fun listening to the record, noticing the jumps in sound. We’ve got sexy Kylie, indie Kylie, pop Kylie and country Kylie, all wrapped up in one neat album. It’s interesting hearing her music evolve, too. From her Stock Aitken Waterman days up to her latest project with BMG, you get to experience each and every shade of the Kylie Minogue experience.
My only gripe with the tracklist, though, is that absolutely nothing from the critically slated but cult favourite ‘Kiss Me Once’ appears. Not one single track. C’mon, Kylie. ‘Into The Blue’ is an absolute bop and you know it.
I mean sure, Greatest Hits compilations are kind of redundant in the age of streaming. Her entire discography is already available on Spotify, and you can create your own playlist to fulfil all of your Kylie needs. But there’s something special about listening to this ultimate collection of Miss Minogue, complete with her looking like a pin-up girl with her legs posing as clock hands, albeit with a track-list that jumps about through time and genre.
That said, it’s the best Greatest Hits Kylie’s released to date (she’s essentially done four before now, with the last one dropping back in 2012). ‘Step Back In Time’, though, encapsulates Kylie in all of her many forms, showing us what a gift to pop music she’s been over the past three decades. In essence, it’s like a love letter to the fans. She’s grown with us, and this is a marvellous way to look back on how both the listener and the artist have changed from her humble beginnings.
That love letter is sealed with a kiss in the form of ‘New York City’, a track that was originally a demo for her latest album ‘Golden’, but was reworked to feature here. Being the only new track on the album – and closing decades worth of Kylie tunes – it has to be something truly special to showcase modern Kylie in all of her golden glory. And, thankfully, it is.
Taking influences from the 80s club scene, ‘New York City’ is pure Kylie disco pop. It’s like exploding glitter, complete with a little dash of grit. The perfect way to close the album.
In short, I had a blast listening to Kylie’s ‘Step Back In Time’. There’s even a track I hadn’t heard before – ‘Breathe’ (I know, I know, I’m a terrible Kylie fan). It’s neat that this album gives fans an oppurtinity to dust off some forgotten gems from her vast discography and pay them some love. For new fans, it’s a great (albeit lengthy), introduction to the Pop Princesses’ music. For fans who’ve been there since the beginning, it’s a wonderful trip down memory lane.
Ranging from her commercial success to her more experimental eras, Kylie has always delivered stellar pop tunes, and this greatest hits release is the perfect way to celebrate her success. Long live the Princess of Pop.
For more on pop music, check out my review of Madonna’s latest album ‘Madame X’, and why it’s so weird, but so, so good.