Shirley Halperin
March 21, 2008 AT 04:00 AM EDT

”I don’t spend much time being nostalgic,” notes Kylie Minogue. And yet, since 2008 is a milestone year for the dance-pop singer, reflection is in order. Besides turning 40, she’s releasing her 10th album — fittingly titled X (out April 1) — which marks a sonically upbeat return after her struggle with breast cancer. A now-healthy Minogue sat down with EW to talk about getting back to business.

How difficult was it returning to music after fighting cancer?
I was determined not to make an album full of songs about a two-year period in my life. I wanted to acknowledge my illness but [also keep] doing songs that make you feel good. Some people say there isn’t the insight…. They [expect] this darkness in my life, but it was never quite like that.

Then again, a lot of other people do like the little vixen catsuit Kylie of five years ago.
I was wearing one recently [for the video ”Wow”], and I found myself saying, ”How come I’m in a catsuit again?” We’ll see if I’ll become entirely sensible one day.

Conquering America still isn’t a priority for you — but what about your huge gay following here?
Can I just apologize to them? They’re always saying, ”Will you please come back?” with that pleading look. As soon as I can, I will. It might not be a huge tour, but I’m trying…. I’m also working on a film musical, just getting the story line done. That’s a tall mountain to climb.

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