dispatches from the pop scene...minus the corn syrup.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

A History Of Kylie Minogue At #4

We know "2 Hearts" has proven, amongst fans, to be a dividing choice for a comeback single by Kylie Minogue. Nothing points to this more than the fact that, after a somewhat lengthy absence followed by a triumphant tour and overall media blitz, she still wasn't able to nab the U.K. #1 slot away from Leona Lewis (or sneak past month-old offerings from Take That and OneRepublic).

All that aside, the dust has settled and "2 Hearts" has charted properly at #4. Here, then, is a look back at the 39-year-old singer's past dalliances with the #4 position on the U.K. chart. (Note the pattern with them all being released in either October or November.)

"Never Too Late" - October 1989 [Video]

This third promo from Enjoy Yourself finds Stock Aitken Waterman at their most formulaic. Mike Stock -- who I'm guessing here was in complete auto-pilot mode -- was literally cranking out a new hit each week at this point, though one wonders if he scratched the opening lyrics to "Never Too Late" on a napkin while grabbing his morning coffee: Why can't you see that I'm still mad about you? / Even though I found out about you / I'll always stay forever true. This harmless treacle broke Minogue's string of seven consecutive singles that all peaked at either #1 or #2.

"Step Back In Time" - November 1990 [Video]

SAW were infinitely more inspired for Kylie's third album, though that might be chalked up to the fact that, for the first time, they weren't burdened with the task of writing and producing the whole thing themselves. Each of Rhythm Of Love's singles are top-notch -- "Better The Devil You Know," "Shocked," "What Do I Have To Do" and "Step Back In Time." Goodbye, teen princess. Hello, sex-kitten-next-door! The accompanying video is ten times more energetic and invigorating than the one for "Never Too Late."

"If You Were With Me Now" - October 1991 [Video]

Ugh! This duet with U.S. R&B singer Keith Washington is the very definition of dullsville. The two recorded their respective vocals on separate continents. They ought to have sunk the master tape in the ocean between them. Redeeming factor: Kylie looks absolutely stunning in the video.

And so, "2 Hearts" becomes Minogue's fourth U.K. #4-charting single. Elsewhere, Robyn's "Handle Me" slips from #18 to #26 in its third week, and the Spice Girls fall from #20 to #23 with "Headlines (Friendship Never Ends)." The physical single for the latter is released today, a day earlier than usual. Darren Hayes' "Me Myself And (I)" debuts at #59.

Spice Girls' Greatest Hits was pipped to the #1 slot on the album chart by Leona Lewis' Spirit, which at 375,000 copies sold in its first week, has become the fastest-selling debut in the U.K.

Interestingly, in Australia, Kylie and Spice Girls have topped the single and album charts respectively.

The U.K. Top 10:

1. "Bleeding Love" - Leona Lewis *4 weeks*
2. "Rule The World" - Take That
3. "Apologize" - Timbaland feat. OneRepublic
4. "2 Hearts" - Kylie Minogue
5. "Valerie" - Mark Ronson feat. Amy Winehouse
6. "No One" - Alicia Keys
7. "Home" - Westlife
8. "Flux" - Bloc Party *new*
9. "Runrig/Tartan Army" - Loch Lomond *new*
10. "About You Now" - Sugababes

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