Kylie Fails To Xcite America

11 04 2008

Sadly, Kylie’s promotional assault on the US has failed to achieve the results she was hoping for, with ‘X’ entering the ‘Billboard 200’ at a disappointing #139 with only 5,588 copies sold this week.

I had made a few comments on my feelings about the US release of X,

1. The repeated delays for the US release
2. What struck me as an absurd choice of first single
3. The lack of any physical release for the single
4. The absence of a video for the single.

However as Jen is actually a US Kylie fan, I think her comments are much more relevant :

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8 responses

11 04 2008
Jen

Just a few personal thoughts and opinions on the story:

As an American and a Kylie fan, I’m not surprised to see that Kylie has yet again not succeeded in the U.S. market. It’s a shame and a loss for the American people, but pop culture and music came and went for most Americans a long time ago. I think when Americans hear Kylie’s name they automatically think “Locomotion” and “80’s bubble gum” music.

I really don’t think her record sales were bad because of import sales. I think many Kylie fans, like myself, have purchased the import as well as the U.S. release. If anything, her appearance on Dancing with the Stars probably boosted her U.S. sales with an audience that probably never heard of her or even realized she was still making music. X was never advertised in any way where I live. Of all the CD releases advertised that week in the newspaper ads, hers was not one of them. I went to Target (as promoted on Kylie’s appearances and KK) to buy my CD and it was the only one on the shelf! I’m not saying I was the last lucky person to pick one up, but I truely believe it was probably the only copy placed on the shelf that day.

On another Dancing with the Stars note… that show is pretty popular with the U.S. audience (but, is currently up against American Idol in the same time slot) and I hear a lot of water cooler talk about it at work, but I’ve not heard one person mention anything about Kylie.

I really don’t think “All I See” was an absurd choice for a U.S. single. I think it was probably the best choice and closest thing to what the American market wants to hear. Don’t get me wrong, as I love Kylie and I love X, but I can’t imagine any other song on the album breaking into the U.S. airwaves.

No single with B sides or mixes… you almost never see CD singles for sale in U.S. stores (at least not where I live).

No video for the single and no presence on music TV… a smart move, as no music TV station ever plays music videos anymore! MTV and VH1 have moved on to reality shows and anything that will market with the late teen crowd. If you’re not a rap/hip hop artist or alternative band, your video will never be seen.

11 04 2008
Samara

i couldn’t agree more with the last comment by Jen, The US market for music has become a haven for rappers and R&B, X did not have any good promotion what so ever. I went to Best Buy on April 1 to get my copy and there were only 2 copies on the shelf and they didn’t even put them in with the new releases. I didn’t see any posters at the big record stores either, this would be a plus for promotion, no newspaper adds, no play on the radio absolutely nothing. The only one who promoted her album was Kylie herself! Despite all the comments I read that All I See featuring MIMS was a poor choice for her first single, NO IT WASN”T! it was the only one people would like out here in the States anyone who isn’t a Kylie fan or has never heard of her that is. Then iTunes doesn’t help any either there only like 5 videos for purchase and only her last 4 albums! Seriously America pull your heads out will you! Don’t even get me started on VH1 and MTV! I can’t believe what they have become! I remember watching video after video when I was a kid and thats how people fall in love with their favorite singer,they see them on TV and say “WoW! who’s that?” and “I want that single!” Singles! another thing you don’t see anymore! I went to a popular record store about a month ago and asked where their CD singles were and they said “we don’t get them anymore!” What is going on its like the only place you can find Kylie albums is on eBay and Amazon. i say its not Kylies fault at all its poor promotion and shady management on behalf of Capital Record, shame on you Capital! I will love Kylie til the end of time and will go to the end of the world to find her music.

11 04 2008
Jen

Amen Samara! I couldn’t have said it better myself!

Just another side note: X was not in the new release section at Target either. I went online to BestBuy to see if they were even carrying it before I wasted a trip to the store — I couldn’t even find it listed. Now I’m anxious to go into my BestBuy just to see if they have it. Maybe you need to live in a big city like New York to find better advertising, better stocked shelves and variety, because Pittsburgh is certainly more like an “arm pitt” when it comes to music.

P.S. http://www.towerrecords.com is also a good source for purchasing Kylie’s CDs and DVDs. Desperate times call for desperate measures when you’re a Kylie fan living in the U.S.!

11 04 2008
Samara

OMG! Jen They Closed Tower Records Over here in Chicago! I was absolutely heartbroken! They used to have Kylie raffles! They would raffle off tickets to see her in concert and cool items as well! I’m serious if it weren’t for the on-line stores i would literally have to go to the UK to buy Kylie albums!i think Kylie will never return to the US after this,I wouldn’t blame her if she didn’t. The only place they had about 6 copies of X was at a Best Buy far from my house but the one I bought my copy from only 2,everywhere else 1 or 2! And that makes me really mad!

12 04 2008
psyducksworld

Hello everyone!

Well, I have to second…er, third Jen’s comment. As an American Kylie fan, I was also hoping that X would have a decent debut stateside, but reality set in after I leafed through all the store circulars last week and didn’t see Kylie listed on the new releases page. Best Buy and Circuit City had the album online and for in store pickups, but Target wasn’t stocking it at their stores at all. I ended up getting my copy at Wal-Mart, of all places! And I have to say that they also had an import version in stock, too. Who knew?!

I was happy to see that Kylie was making appearances on various TV shows to promote the album, however, it’s too bad that her record company in the U.S. didn’t support her live appearances by releasing the “All I See” single to radio stations (that’s coming out next week, or so I hear) and pushing for exposure on new releases Tuesday, among other things. I mean, really, how stupid not to have radio playing All I See while she was here? Perhaps they’re planning a second wave for America after the European tour. It sounds like it’ll be a great tour, so maybe the record company is hoping the excitement will surf across the pond to America.

Like other fans, I was expecting X back in February and I honestly think it would’ve been a better month to release the album. For one thing, it was still close enough to the worldwide release date of 11/2007 and it could’ve carried that momentum over here. I know that IGN’s Todd Gilchrist reviewed X back in January and he was very happy with the album. It’s a shame that countless of people — most who are probably not Kylie fans, but who might’ve been curious to check out the CD — read the review but weren’t able to actually buy the CD in stores. The sad reality is that many people in America move so fast in their lives and if something isn’t immediately available to them, they won’t bother to check back for a release date.

Anyway, here is the link for the review:
http://music.ign.com/articles/846/846611p1.html

I agree with Jen about the import sales: most fans have no problem double-dipping if it’s for an artist they truly like. The poor sales really stem from a lack of promotion on the part of the record company. Seriously, besides people like us who’ve been following this album, who else knew that X was coming out?

As far as All I See (w/MIMS) being the first single for American audiences, well, I guess I can understand that choice if the record company was courting a younger, somewhat urban demographic; however, for the general populace listening to radios stations that play a “variety” of songs/genres, I would’ve selected In My Arms. It has a great intro, an awesome beat, and a very catchy hook. It’s definitely one of those songs that sticks in your mind — perfect for the mainstream listener.

I guess the best way to look at this situation is in terms of long term sales. After all, the entertainment industry and the mainstream listeners are a funny bunch. If one of Kylie’s songs happens to play during a show or a commercial, that might fuel the curiosity fire and send sales through the roof.

12 04 2008
David

In response to Jen and Samara’s comments…

Wow. That’s so bizarre hearing our Kylie’s struggling to get a foot back in the US…

As an Australian living in Melbourne (Kylie’s hometown as you all would know), there’s always been tremendous support for her music here. Especially since “Light Years” and particularly after “Fever”.

Just like everyone else that got the album: I loved “All I See” but I thought it was misleading as a first single in America – seeing as the bulk of the album’s quite removed from that kind of Janet Jackson style light R&B pop.

But after reading your comments – yeah you’re right. It’s not like American radio will sink their teeth onto “2 Hearts” or something as electro pop as “Speakerphone”.

Can’t believe how hard it is to get good pop in America! Such a shock really… here in Australia, it’s almost similar…

If you’re not a guitar wielding band or if you don’t make strummy la la rock… it’s hard to get by. Our singles chart is random: novelty singles get by. Strong influences from American R&B infiltrates… but never any brit pop (which I reckon is the best kind there is).

Poor Kylie. I hope she tours Australia for this tour – I’ll definately be there!

16 04 2008
Nathan Aaron

Well from these numbers:

U.S. release:
X – No. 139/6,000 copies
Body Language – No. 42/43,000
Fever – No. 3/114,700

I’d say it’s DEFINITELY not that the US doesn’t know Kylie; it’s the record companies being idiots. I mean, a five month waiting period in the US?? What the crap is that about? It’s 2008, not 1980. And they wonder why people have given up on the old fashioned record industry.

16 04 2008
Nathan Aaron

PS – my point being, while sales for the other two might not be huge, they’re gigantic compared to poor ‘X’.

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