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Golden (Kylie Minogue).jpg

Golden is Kylie Minogue's 14th studio album which was released on April 6, 2018 by BMG and Mushroom Records.

Album Background

In 2016, Kylie Minogue released her final studio album with long-term record label Parlophone, entitled "Kylie Christmas: Snow Queen Edition" (which was a re-packaging of the singer's original studio album a year prior).

Between 2014 and 2017, she continued to use herself as a featuring artist to the works of Giorgio Moroder and Fernando Garibay, and eventually expanded her work with film and television.

In February 2017, Minogue signed a new record deal with BMG Rights Management which will release her upcoming album internationally.

In December 2017, she and BMG had struck a joint-deal with Mushroom Music Labels—under the sub-division label Liberator Music to release her new album in Australia and New Zealand.

Throughout that year, Minogue worked with writers and producers for her fourteenth studio album including Amy Wadge, Sky Adams, DJ Fresh, Nathan Chapman, and teamed with previous collaborators Richard Stannard, The Invisible Men and Karen Poole.

Early production on the album started in London and Los Angeles, California, and eventually ended with her recording majority of the album's content in Nashville, Tennessee.

Minogue commented about the process and inspiration in these locations in October 2017, stating; "I did a lot of work on the album before that but Nashville had a profound effect on me."

Additionally, Minogue co-wrote every song on the album, making it the first time she has done so since her "Impossible Princess" album. She described the songwriting process in the latter location as "therapy."

Tracklisting

  1. Dancing 2:59
  2. Stop Me From Falling 3:02
  3. Golden 3:08
  4. A Lifetime To Repair 3:19
  5. Sincerely Yours 3:29
  6. One Last Kiss 3:41
  7. Live A Little 3:08
  8. Shelby '68 3:35
  9. Radio On 3:43
  10. Love 2:52
  11. Raining Glitter 3:33
  12. Music's Too Sad Without You (with Jack Savoretti) 4:10

Delxue edition tracks

  1. Lost Without You 4:04
  2. Every Little Part of Me 2:58
  3. Rollin' 3:32
  4. Low Blow 2:56

Streaming edition track

  1. Stop Me from Falling (Remix) (featuring Gente de Zona) 3:01

Chart Performance

"Golden" debuted at number one in the United Kingdom on April 13th, with 48,032 album-equivalent units; 1,870 of those units were taken from sales-equivalent streams as reported by Music Week.

The album became Minogue's sixth number one on the UK Albums Charts and her first since "Aphrodite" in 2010.

The album outsold its closest competitor and previous week's number one, "The Greatest Showman: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack", by 13,000 units according to the Official Charts Company. It also debuted at number-one on the UK Vinyl Albums Chart.

With 6,400 records sold, "Golden" became the fastest selling vinyl album of 2018 in the UK. Furthermore, it also became the fastest-selling cassette of the year and in its first week of release already outsold the best-selling artist album cassette of 2017.

Prior to the album's release, Adam Sherwin of i News noted that all 4,000 of the limited edition "Golden" cassettes had already sold out on pre-release orders with Minogue's first week cassette sales in the UK amounting to 2,600 (according to the Official Charts Company).

Sherwin noted the audio format, once considered "obsolete", was experiencing a revival thanks to a new audience of "hipsters and music nostalgists" who enjoy the "coffee table appeal" of cassettes.

In her native Australia, "Golden" debuted at number one on the ARIA Albums Chart, with 8,745 sales, becoming her fifth studio album to debut atop the chart, making it Minogue's first album to peak atop the chart in both the United Kingdom and Australia in 17 years, a feat she first accomplished in 2001 with "Fever."

Subsequently, it opened atop of the Australian Artist Albums Chart and the country's Digital Albums Chart.

In New Zealand, the album became the singer's fifth album to reach the top twenty with a peak at number 16 on their regional chart. In Japan, it opened at number 14 on the daily Oricon Albums Chart.

By April 16, 2018, the album ended up at number 64 on their weekly chart with physical sales of 1,052 units. Furthermore, it opened at number 10 on their Western Albums Chart, and number 18 on their Digital Albums Chart with 586 digital units in the first week.

"Golden" debuted at number 64 on the US Billboard 200, the singer's ninth appearance and her first-recognised independent release in the country. It opened with 10,000 album-equivalent units, of which 8,000 were in traditional album sales. It also reached number 33 on the Canadian Albums Chart, provided by Billboard.

In Italy, the album opened at number 14 on Italian Albums Chart, making it Minogue's fourth album to reach the top 20 in Italy. In France, it opened at number 33 on their national albums chart.

"Golden" debuted at number 14 and number six on their physical and digital albums chart, accumulating 2,800 overall sales in its first week; this was considered a drop in contrast to her 2014 album, "Kiss Me Once" (which shifted 6,400 copies).

In Belgium, the album debuted at number four and number 12 on their individual Flanders and Wallonia albums chart.

In Scandinavian regions, "Golden" opened at number 38 on the Swedish Albums Chart and number 47 on the Finnish Albums Chart.

In Germany, it opened at number three on their albums chart, making it her second-highest charting album (alongside the album, "Aphrodite" and just under her album, "Fever").

In the Netherlands, the album debuted at number 18 on their overall albums chart, and entered their vinyl chart at number six.

Critical Reception

At Metacritic, "Golden" has an average score of 63 based on ten reviews, indicating "generally favorable reviews." Many critics praised Minogue's involvement in the creative process, specifically the songwriting.

Mark Kennedy for The Associated Press noted how her songwriting skills have become more reflective on her life; he says, "The lyrics fit a woman who turns 50 this year — regret, bad love, hope and yearning."

Cameron Adams from Australian publication News.com.au awarded the album four stars, and said "no one can say Golden is just your regular Kylie Minogue album."

Nick Hasted from The Independent awarded it three stars, and believed it was better than her previous efforts because of its "authenticity", and highlighted "Shelby 68'" and "Love" for being some of the singer's most personal tracks on the record.

Tim Sendra from AllMusic labelled it a "darn bold" for an artist of Minogue's longevity, stating "The amazing thing about the album, and about Minogue, is that she pulls off the country as well as she's pulled off new wave, disco, electro, murder ballads, and everything else she's done in her long career."

Sal Cinquemani from Slant Magazine awarded the album three-and-a-half stars out of five, praising Minogue's experimentation with Country music and labelled it her most "personal effort since 1997's Impossible Princess."

Minor criticism was aimed at her "tinny and over-compressed" vocals on certain tracks, but ultimately concluded in saying: "Golden further bolsters Minogue's reputation for taking risks—and artfully sets the stage for her inevitable disco comeback."

MusicOMH editor Helen Clarke awarded it four stars, and commended the singer's skills through songwriting and production work. She commented, "Golden stands alongside her classic records; in a world of disposable music, Kylie's return is welcome and shows how slick, smart pop music should be done."

Giving the record a positive review, Mark Kennedy from The Washington Post noted some tracks delved too heavy into the country aesthetic, but concluded "there's no denying Minogue's overall skill, as usual. She's earned the right to dabble in anything she wants, and she does it very well here."

Conversely, Ian Gormely of Exclaim! gave Golden 6 out of 10 score, and stated that the album "is bereft of relative stinkers, but there's little to bring listeners back."

Although complimenting her songwriting skils and incorporation of pop music, The Independent writer Nick Hasted believed "the Nashville experiment [on Golden] is finally too half-hearted for the desired transformation."

Pitchfork editor Ben Cardew agreed, and explained that on Golden, "sounds like someone playing at country music, rather than someone who understands it." He did acknowledge Kylie's personality in driving the record, but concluded that he "hopes country Kylie is short-lived."

Larry Bartleet from NME felt the best tracks happened "when country serves as a delicate seasoning for Kylie's pop chops," and identified "Dancing" and "Raining Glitter" as examples. Elsewhere, Barleet believed the remaining work "strays perilously close to pastiche."

In a negative review, Joe Muggs from The Arts Desk awarded in two stars, and felt the production and Kylie's songwriting were overshadowed by "bombast" of musical styles. He stated that "Kylie very likely does have a great album (or albums) still in her, but imitating artists half her age really isn't the way to get to them."

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