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Minogue still waiting for big break in U.S.

Aussie star hopes to get real foothold in America with new album
/ Source: Billboard

It is judgment day in the U.S. for Kylie Minogue. With her previous album, the worldwide smash “Fever,” and its indefatigable single “Can’t Get You out of My Head,” the global superstar made great strides in America.

Now, two years later, on the eve of the Feb. 10 U.S. release of her new Capitol album -- the ’80s-spackled “Body Language” -- the Australian singer acknowledges that the pressure is indeed on.

“It’s on, but I don’t want to admit it to myself,” Minogue says of her ninth studio album (her fourth U.S. release). “In the end, I can only do what I’m going to do.”

Pausing for a moment, she continues, “I’m not even sure if I’ve actually broken America. I think I now have a foot in the door. I haven’t completely hypnotized them yet.”

True. But Minogue’s celebrity factor is rising here, just as it has internationally. “The paparazzi know who I am. My days of shopping anonymously in New York are coming to an end,” she says with a chuckle.

In the U.S., the lead single from “Body Language” -- “Slow” -- is gaining momentum at radio.

The electro-steeped, erotically charged “Slow” is being played on more than 80 mainstream and rhythmic top 40 stations, including KIIS Los Angeles and WKTU New York.

WKTU music director Skyy Walker says the station began playing the song’s original version late last year. “But it may have been too sexy for the room,” he says. “After a couple hundred spins, it remained unfamiliar to our listeners.”

But new remixes by the Chemical Brothers and Mike Rizzo are changing that. Walker says the station recently began playing Rizzo’s energetic restructuring, and listeners are responding.

For some industry observers, among them Lainie Copicotto, president of dance/electronic marketing firm Aurelia Entertainment, one of the main reasons why Minogue has yet to break in the U.S. in a more meaningful way is because she doesn’t spend enough time here.

“Kylie’s presence in the U.S. hasn’t been consistent enough to make her a household name yet,” she says. “With Kylie, it’s hit or miss with each single.”

In the U.K., “Slow” debuted in the pole position of the Official U.K. Charts Co.’s singles chart in November. One month later, “Body Language” debuted at No. 6 on its album chart.

It is safe to say that Minogue and her U.K. label, Parlophone, were hoping for a higher album debut -- especially when Minogue’s previous album, “Fever,” was her most successful to date.

“Fever” debuted at No. 1 in Germany, Australia and the U.K.; it is certified platinum or multi-platinum in 18 countries and gold in another 17.

The album debuted at No. 3 on the Billboard 200, selling 115,000 units in its first week, according to Nielsen SoundScan. It has since amassed U.S. sales of 1.1 million and has sold more than 6 million copies worldwide, according to the label. The album’s lead single, “Can’t Get You out of My Head,” sold 3 million copies globally -- and topped the charts in 21 countries.

Minogue will spend the bulk of February in the U.S., and plans to attend the Grammy Awards. “Come Into My World” has been nominated in the best dance recording category.

Minogue, who is an icon in the gay community, will appear on the first episode of the new season of Bravo/NBC’s hit reality show “Queer Eye for the Straight Guy.” This is timed to coincide with the releases of “Body Language” and “What’s That Sound,” the “Queer Eye” soundtrack that Capitol is issuing Feb. 10. The Chemical Brothers’ remix of “Slow” appears on the collection.

In March, Minogue’s Nov. 15 one-off concert at London’s Hammersmith Apollo, “Money Can’t Buy,” will air on Music Choice and DirectTV.