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The Broadcaster

The Student News Site of East Islip High School

The Broadcaster

The Student News Site of East Islip High School

The Broadcaster

REVIEW: Red Velvet – Chill Kill
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Red Velvet is a South Korean girl group formed by SM Entertainment. They originally debuted with four members: Irene who is the leader, main rapper, lead dancer, sub vocalist, visual, and center; Seulgi who is the main dancer and lead vocalist; Wendy who is the main vocalist; and Joy who is the lead rapper and sub vocalist. They debuted on August 1, 2014 with the single “Happiness”. On March 17, 2015, Red Velvet made their first comeback as a five member girl group, adding a former SM Rookies trainee named Yeri to the lineup, with the EP Ice Cream Cake which had the very iconic title track “Ice Cream Cake.” Yeri is the group’s sub vocalist, sub rapper and maknae. Now, you may be wondering “Why is their name Red Velvet?” Red Velvet gets their name from the music they release. The “red” part represents the mainly pop songs the group puts out like “Umpah Umpah,” “Ice Cream Cake,” “Happiness,” and “Dumb Dumb” to name a few. The “velvet” part represents the R&B and Hip Hop songs the group releases like “Automatic,” “Be Natural,” and many more. Throughout the career of Red Velvet, they’ve had nothing but success. On March 12, 2020, all five members of Red Velvet voiced the K-pop Trolls in the animated movie Trolls World Tour. In 2019, they won a Teen’s Choice Award for Choice Electronic/Dance Song along with Ellie Goulding for their remix on the song “Close To Me.”

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On November 13th, Red Velvet released their third studio album, Chill Kill. The album has ten tracks and I am going to review all of them and give you my honest opinion about the entire album.

Here is my track by track review:

1. “Chill Kill”- “Chill Kill” is the title track of this album. The beginning sounds very haunting and spooky which is contributed by the instrumental and the vocals from Joy and Wendy establish this. It is a very catchy song which is typical for many of Red Velvet’s songs whether they are “red” songs or “velvet” songs. The chorus and pre-chorus are addictive as well and make you want to get up and dance. I enjoyed the rap verses and I think that Wendy and Joy did an amazing job. I thought that the music video was phenomenal. Everything was amazing from the cinematography to the member’s outfits in the music video. I specifically loved Joy’s outfit that she wore which was a pink long sleeved crop top with a black skirt, paired with a belt. The lyrics of the song are really deep and are acted out in the music video, in the video you can see Joy and Seulgi fighting while Joy raps “You keep running, running away/ Shouting how you hate me/ But you couldn’t finish saying it/ And you eyes lock with mine.” and in the following scene, Irene and Yeri are fighting while Wendy raps “Yeah, look how much has changed/ Look how I’m quite changed.” and Seulgi follows up with “Could I hold you once again?” while Yeri and Irene hug each other. 

Rating: 10/10

2. “Knock Knock (Who’s There?)”– The beginning of the song starts off with melodic hums which give the song a sort of mysterious and alluring sort of vibe and sound that hooks you in with the energetic and upbeat instrumental. Also in the instrumental, you can hear a toy piano and knocking near the end of the song which is fitting since the lyrics of the chorus is literally “Knock-knock, open up the door.” Vocals again, are phenomenal, as per usual. I also like this song mainly because of the catchy and addictive chorus which can get stuck in your head really fast. Plus, as I was listening to the song, I was envisioning the choreography if Red Velvet performs this song live, which is a bit weird but I wanted to include this just because! 

Rating: 9/10

3. “Underwater”– The song has an R&B instrumental that pairs really well with the member’s smooth and soft vocals. This song doesn’t have any rap verses and in reality this song doesn’t even need rap since it’s so vocal focused. Vocally, the members sound phenomenal and none of them really stood out to me since they’re all strong vocal wise.

Rating: 9.5/10

4. “Will I Ever See You Again?”– I really like this song mainly because it sounds almost enchanting and has this vibe of being enchanting yet spooky and haunting at the same time (I got goosebumps when I first listened to “Will I Ever See You Again” for the first time, no lie). The synths in the instrumental and the little vocals ab-libs add to this vibe which I love but regardless I loved the vocals in this song plus how the song was slow yet upbeat. 

Rating: 10.5/10

5.  “Nightmare”– “Nightmare” is most definitely a “red” song based on the instrumental but it also has a little hint of “velvet” mixed into it during the beginning of the song which has a steady percussion which is continued into the first verse then it transitions into a more upbeat and the percussion starts to speed up and remains this way for the rest of the chorus. The vocals in this song are amazing, as always. I don’t think that any singular member stood out but all of them shined in their own way, in my opinion. I feel like Yeri shined during the rap section of the song but there was nothing special about it, it was just okay. With “Nightmare” it kind of seduces you in a way where you are entranced by the melody and as you are listening to it, you’re going through different sequences (dream sequences, nightmare, see what I did there?).

Rating: 8/10

6. “Iced Coffee”– “Iced Coffee” is a song that describes how it feels to be obsessed with a lover while using iced coffee as a metaphor for obsession. The song is very slow, mellow and calming plus the vocals are amazing. And the harmonies?!?! HELLO??? Each of the member’s voices blend beautifully with each other’s in order to create these harmonies that were sent from above (thank you SM Entertainment!) Plus, I am still not getting over Wendy’s high note in this song. “Iced Coffee” is another vocal heavy song that doesn’t have any rap nor needs rap and is better off without it. I think that “Iced Coffee” also shares similarities in instrumentals with “21:29” by Twice.                             

 Rating: 9/10

7. “One Kiss”– “One Kiss” reminds me of some Red Velvet songs like “Dumb Dumb” and “In N Out” and other songs in K-pop because of the similarities in instrumental, like “Headshot” by Ailee. The song is also very addictive and the percussion and little vocal ad libs play a factor in this. It sounds like your standard “red” song and all of the members get their chance to shine but I really love Yeri, Joy, and Wendy’s part at the end. 

Rating: 10/10

8. “Bulldozer”– This song is very short but I will say, it was packed a punch especially since the instrumental sounds similar to certain concepts Red Velvet has done and according to the Genius page on this song, “‘Bulldozer’ celebrates strength, defiance, and the courage to break free from societal norms.” As the member’s sing “I’m a bulldozer, unhesitatingly closer/ You’ll see me destroy everything/ I’m your poet, I’m your pain/ If you can’t handle it, stop and step back.” I like how each of the members blend with each other within the different verses. This song is also a very good performance song so hopefully we could possibly see a choreography video or live performance of “Bulldozer”? In the instrumental during the post chorus, as the members say “What can I break?” You  can hear glass breaking and I thought that was a really nice touch. Overall, I like it. 

Rating: 9.7/10

9. “Wings”– “Wings” begins very choir-like with all the members singing at the beginning and then it transitions into this kind of bubblegum pop meets R&B style instrumental which fits seamlessly with the members melodic style of singing which is clear, and bright and something that I want to see more of from Red Velvet as a group because it’s so good! The members are again killing it with the vocals and again they all stand out but I feel that Seulgi, Wendy, and Yeri stood out more, especially Wendy for the high note at the end. The song then concludes with rhythmic clapping while the members sing “Spread your wings butterfly (Oh, spread your wings)/ Above the sunlight I dreamed of every night (yeah)/ The sky that holds you in it’s arms (For the sky, oh, yeah-oh)/ Flying high, brilliantly/ Even if it rains again (Woo)/ A rainbow that will bloom brightly (Shine towards us Yeah)/ Spread your wings butterfly (Ah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah)” 

Rating: 1000/10

10. “풍경화 (Scenery)”– The album closes with “Scenery” which sounds slow and sorrowful. “Scenery” is very vocal heavy like a majority of the songs on the album. This song almost reminds me of a song that plays in a k-drama during a scene where the two protagonists have a romantic scene together and then it plays a bunch of screenshots of the scene and then it cuts to the sponsors. The members’ voices are amazing in this song and it’s almost very calming and relaxing to listen to if you’re having trouble falling asleep since it sounds very “lullaby-like” if that makes sense because the members sound like they’re singing a lullaby. I really adore how the members sound and I will say that I love the bridge and again Wendy’s vocals are muah, chef’s kiss! 

Rating: 10/10

Before getting into my opinions of Chill Kill, I’ve asked a EIHS freshman, dedicated K-pop stan and one of my best friends, Bee Law, in order to get their opinion on the album. I interviewed Bee via Instagram DMs and asked them a few questions about Chill Kill.

Here’s the interview:

Me: “Hey Bee, can I ask you a few questions for my Chill Kill review?”

Bee: “Yeah sure!”

Me: “So first question, have you listened to the album?”

Bee: “Yes i have listened to it”

Me: “What did you think of the album?”

Bee: “I think that it was an album worth the year long wait. Red Velvet makes dreamy songs that showcase their vocals and the Chill Kill album really shows it. There isn’t a single song on the album that I couldn’t say I didn’t like or call it bad. So yeah!”

Me: “Same, I think that this album showcases not only RV’s vocals but also their versatility when it comes to concepts. Specifically spooky concepts. Next question, what’s your favorite song on the album?” 

Bee: “My favorite song would definitely have to be ‘Underwater’ but ‘Iced Coffee’ and ‘Nightmare’ are high on my list too.”

Me: “Those are good songs, for me I’d say ‘Knock Knock’ and ‘Will I Ever See You Again’ are my faves. ‘Chill Kill’ is my favorite title track by far.”

Me: “I feel like this next question is controversial but I’m gonna ask it anyway. Who owned this era for you?”

Bee: “I’d have to say Joy especially because of her vocals in ‘Chill Kill’.”

Me: “I’d say Joy as well but also Wendy for her vocals.”

Me: “Would you listen to this album again?”

Bee: “Absolutely.”

Me: “And final question, would you recommend it to anyone?”

Bee: “I would recommend it to everyone I know.” 

Me: “Same but with Red Velvet’s discography.”

Me: “Thanks for answering my questions Bee!”

Bee: “Of course!”

Now onto my final thoughts and opinions: Was the album worth listening to? Yes, I absolutely love all of the vocal heavy songs including “Chill Kill”. This album was a good listen because as you are listening to it track by track, it feels like you’re going through a rabbithole of different moods and sounds. I mean that in a good way. “Chill Kill” has this upbeat-pop sound with heavy hitting lyrics which is contrasted heavily by “Scenery” which is very melancholy and ballad-like. I also think that Chill Kill (the album) had a great balance of “red” and “velvet” songs in the album. Red Velvet is no stranger to changing concepts for album releases which is displayed heavily in their discography, I think that a set of albums that best displays that are ‘The ReVe Festival’ albums since they have different songs that each have their own individual feel to them. For example, the title track for ‘The ReVe Festival’  Day 1, “Zimzalabim” and the title track for ‘The ReVe Festival’ Day 2, “Umpah Umpah” are both energetic pop songs which contrasts the title track for ‘The ReVe Festival’  Finale, “Psycho”, which isn’t as energetic as “Umpah Umpah” or “Zimzalabim” but it is very strong vocally and is driven by it’s choreography. Also, in the music video for “Psycho” it has this kind of “victorian-ish” aesthetic when you look at some of the members’ outfits and some of the backdrops. Chill Kill best displays that Red Velvet can pull off any concept whether it be girl crush, summer, or ever spooky like in this album. I think that Wendy and Yeri owned this era vocally and visually, Joy owned this era.

Overall I give Chill Kill by Red Velvet a 10.5/10.

About the Contributor
Angelina Altamirano
Angelina Altamirano, Staff Writer
Angelina Altamirano is a freshman at East Islip High School and one of the many contributors to the school’s newspaper, “The Broadcaster”. She likes drawing, listening to music and rewatching lip sync performances from RuPaul’s Drag Race. She hopes to one day become an animator or a voice actress. She will continue to write album reviews for the newspaper and more articles about stuff she likes. Hope you enjoy her articles!!