Review: Red Velvet takes listeners on a wild ride with “The ReVe Festival”

Red Velvet

Red Velvet, a five member K-pop group including Wendy, Irene, Yeri, Seulgi and Joy, release a new mini album titled "The ReVe Festival."

It climbed its way up to #1 on Itunes Top Albums list, a first for any K-pop girl group. But for the queens of the summer comeback, it doesn’t come as much of a surprise for fans of Red Velvet.

The five member K-pop girl group came back with a new mini album “The ReVe Festival,” displaying their more upbeat and colorful red style partnered with the more mature velvet side the group has made into their own as well as revisiting previous styles from past songs.

The album opens with the main track “Zimzalabim.” To match the theme of a festival of sorts, the background of the song starts off with a pounding circus drum and a strange chime that sounds like it came from a traditional circus game. On first listen the sound can confuse the listener with darker undertones in the beginning to before going into Irene, Yeri and Joy’s almost happy tones over a marching band drummer’s speedy beat and a weird growlish whine in the background. From there, Wendy and Seulgi transition the song into Red Velvet’s signature summer vibe, but the mood changes again when the song get to the chorus. The darker tone from the beginning comes back as the group all chants “Zimzalabim,” think (G)I-dle’s “Latata” but more ominous. After the initial shock of the first listen, the song starts to grow on the listener and after more than three it’s almost like the chorus has hypnotized the audience to keep replaying the song.

As usual with Red Velvet, the B-sides are either just as good or better than the title track. “Sunny Side Up” took some of the smoother style cues from Red Velvet’s last mini album “RBB.” After the intensity of the title track the velvet vocals and chill vibe of the background shows off the group’s versatility. Joy starts off the song with a slightly distorted whisper tone that builds in volume before Wendy and Irene transition the song and establish the "laying by the pool" atmosphere of the song. The steady soft beat and relaxed beat strumming lets Red Velvet’s vocals lead the song and even when it hits the chorus and the music becomes more prominent, it still plays into the mood of the vocals.

Red Velvet keeps up the more classic summer vibe through songs like “Milkshake” and “Bing Bing.” The whimsical beat opening “Milkshake” pairs well with Wendy and Seulgi’s lower register and the shift to Yeri’s higher voice by dropping out the lower beat and replacing it with more percussive claps makes for an interesting first verse. In the second verse the audience is treated to rapper Joy along with Yeri and Irene adding to the ever-changing vibe of the song. “Bing Bing” use of acoustic guitar and fast drummer beat color the background while the group’s vocals work to bring out the excitement.

Red Velvet’s new mini album “The ReVe Festival” provides listeners with a variety of different songs for a variety of summer activities. It shows off the group’s ability to tackle diverse styles of music while retaining their dual red and velvet concepts. The mini album entertains loyal fans of the group while also demonstrating the group’s core sounds to a newer and broader audience.