Kylie Minogue – “Fever” (2002 special edition)
With the 20th anniversary upon us of Kylie’s biggest and most successful album so far, it is perhaps fitting that we take a listen to the 2002 expanded edition of the album, which included “Can’t Get Blue Monday Out Of My Head”, a number of mixes and “Whenever You Feel Like It”, which featured on the soundtrack of the ‘Scooby Doo’ film earlier that year (so clearly this was aimed at the US market big time!).
“Fever” had already topped the charts and sold over six million copies globally at this point, yielded four worldwide smash hit singles from the colossus of “Can’t Get You Out Of My Head“, the Australian chart topper “In Your Eyes”, to the US club chart No.1 and No.23 singles chart hit “Love At First Sight” and the Grammy Award winning “Come Into My World”. Kylie had undertaken a sellout world tour throughout most of 2002 in support of the album that had attracted the largest ticket sales and audience numbers yet.
So, on 19th November 2002, the two-disc expanded edition, with new cover art, was released to bring to an end what had been the most phenomenal and unexpected twelve months yet for Kylie. Let’s go back twenty years and relive the majesty of a time when Kylie WAS the Queen of Pop, if only for a year…
13. Can’t Get Blue Monday Out Of My Head
Whoever thought that blending New Order’s signature tune, “Blue Monday“, with Kylie’s monstrous global smash hit would work? It does so and so effortlessly, as if one had been written with the other in mind… The synths of the 1983 original fit so well over the final choruses while the beat and pace of the backing track combine with that of “Can’t Get You Out Of My Head” as Kylie pays homage to the earlier composition with her occasional “how does it feel?”. And just how does it feel? A1A, 100%, top dog. Kylie unveiled her fusion at the Brit Awards in February 2002 when she ‘did the double’, winning both Best International Female Artist and Best International Album, and well deserved there were too. She later used this version for her Fever2002 world tour, as well as its appearance as a B side to “Love At First Sight”, so its inclusion here was so necessary.
14. Love At First Sight (Scumfrog Beauty and The Beast vocal edit)
This remix of “Love At First Sight” from Dutch DJ Jesse Houk aka The Scumfrog featured on CD2 of the single release in June 2002. There isn’t much bass to the track as Kylie’s vocals are relegated over the heavy synth and power drum programming, alongside The Scumfrog’s own added vocal. It’s freaky and funky and will blow your mind!
15. Can’t Get You Out Of My Head (Deluxe’s Dirty Dub)
This new mix of “Can’t Get You Out Of My Head” was a feature of the 12″ single though not on the CD single, which most people bought, so it’s a welcome inclusion here and comes courtesy of Irish producer Tim ‘Deluxe’ Liken. As with most mixes, little of the vocal and verse of the main song exit. ‘Deluxe’ focuses on the line “won’t you stay?” for repetition against a funky house/club orientated backdrop.
16. In Your Eyes (Roger Sanchez release the dub mix)
This version of “In Your Eyes” from Roger Sanchez was only previously available on the Australian CD single and 12″, so once again it’s general inclusion here is very welcome. “Is the world still spinning around?” asks Kylie again and again with an electro, trippy beat to this fine dub, enough to blow your mind in any simple situation(!)
17. Love At First Sight (Ruff & Jam US radio mix)
This is the version of “Love At First Sight” released in America and it has to be said it pales in comparison with the album version that was released internationally in 2002. It sounds like a PWL-early 90’s bubblegum, throw-away pop number. Fine for a B side or a mix, but not really for general radio release, especially in America! It’s a ‘juicy’ enough version and lots of fun, but it’s not in keeping with the sound of this new, exciting era in Kylie’s career. Skip it if you need to!
18. Come Into My World (Fischerspooner mix)
Another new version of “Come Into My World” from US duo Fischerspooner (Warren Fischer and Casey Spooner) and it sounds more like a dub, but actually more interesting than the album or single remix that was launched in November 2002. One wonders how this would have fared if released officially… Even Kylie’s vocals are more accentuated against the industrious backdrop of the soundtrack that is in keeping with the album and preceding singles. Perhaps this would also have ‘encouraged’ Kylie and team to come up with a more graphically dominated video for the song that provided consistency with its three accompanying bedfellows.
19. Whenever You Feel Like It
We are blessed with the publication on this expanded edition of “Whenever You Feel Like It”, recorded for the album but not making the final twelve. It did, however, feature on the soundtrack album for ‘Scooby Doo’ film of 2002, more exposure in America, and so it winds up here for anyone that didn’t buy it or see the film. It’s a great song and it’s a shame it didn’t make the final cut (perhaps loose “Dancefloor”…). There’s a line in the middle that goes “my heart’s beating with the rhythm of love…” and so is ours Kylie, still!
The expanded, or ‘special edition’ of “Fever“, was released on 19th November 2002, a week after “Come Into My World”, the fourth and final single was issued. Additional sales were added to this already monstrous seller over the Christmas period, just to ensure that the album ended up on the biggest sellers list for a second year running, complete with new cover photography, so it looked like a new album almost!
“Fever” still remains Kylie’s biggest album globally, and with such a killer lead single, it’s hard to see that being challenged again, although any of Kylie’s successive albums are worthy of prize. But “Fever” came out when physical sales were still number one and in today’s world, that just isn’t the case any longer. Twenty years on, “Fever” still sounds completely futuristic. Kylie’s first, and so far only, million seller in America along with multiple millions internationally is as addictive in 2021 as it was in 2001.
There are still some gems on this album that were not given the light of day commercially or played live for the Fever2002 tour. “Love Affair” and “Fragile” have to rank high on the list, while Parlophone and CampKylie could have stretched things a little further with the seductive “More, More, More” if they had wanted to. Perhaps with some of those great B sides from this era (“Baby”, “Rendezvous At Sunset” and “Good Like That”) thrown in for good measure, this could have been a very special edition indeed. Let’s hope a “Fever” expanded happens one day…