“Feel My Rhythm” is a spring gem

Red Velvet’s new mini album combines sugary bops with dreamy vocals


Photo | SM Entertainment

Released on the first day of spring, Red Velvet’s newest EP offers the perfect bright songs to start off the spring season.

Aashna Patel and Angela Zhang

On March 21, Korean pop girl group Red Velvet released its 9th EP titled “The ReVe Festival 2022: Feel My Rhythm” as an extension of the three-part, carnival-themed “The ReVe Festival” series it created in 2019. 

From “Zimzalabim,” a wacky, polarizing EDM track to “Umpah Umpah,” a stereotypical summer beach song with colorful visuals and melodies, to “Psycho,” a nostalgic R&B song with dark undertones, “The ReVe Festival” series of 2019 felt like a rollercoaster ride with unexpected turns and surprises. In a press conference, Red Velvet had revealed that there would be multiple mini-albums in the new “The ReVe Festival 2022” released this year, similar to its 2019 series.

Throughout their eight years of K-pop fame, Red Velvet has proved to be musically and conceptually versatile, with the group’s unique dual concept. The group has a “red” side that represents its experimental, abstract and colorful side (through releases like “Red Flavor” and “Russian Roulette”) and a “velvet” side that represents its R&B, mature and elegant sides (through releases like “Bad Boy” and “Peek-a-Boo”). 

“Feel My Rhythm”: ⅘

“Feel my Rhythm,” the title track for Red Velvet’s new album, is a unique, yet successful blend of classical music and dance-pop/EDM. Released on composer Johann Bach’s birthday in commemoration, “Feel my Rhythm” incorporates the main theme from Bach’s “Air on G String” both at the start of the song and throughout the chorus. By paying homage to classical music, Red Velvet emulates an elegance that complements the sweetness of the chorus to create a fresh spring bop. Despite this classical music influence, the structure of “Feel my Rhythm” is anything but peaceful or relaxing. After the classical introduction, there are moments when the song switches abruptly from a melodic verse to heavy beats, such as after the first chorus and in the bridge.

The eccentric music video brings viewers from colorful, spring scenes to dark, ominous ones with a recurring strawberry motif and dancers in creepy parrot costumes. The classical period that inspires the track also appears in the music video through classical art style sets and costumes. Similar to much of Red Velvet’s discography, “Feel my Rhythm” feels extremely chaotic and slightly overwhelming, as the song constantly switches from one vocal line to another and layers orchestral and electronic instrumentals with dynamic transitions without much breathing room. However, the transitions between each of the quintet’s voices are graceful and fluid, and the song’s unique blend of genres gives the song an entertaining structure.  

“Beg For Me”: ⅗

A song reminiscent of the chic and groovy Red Velvet past tracks like “Sassy Me” and “Pose,” “Beg For Me” is about a powerful girl who warns a lover from getting too attached to her, through phrases like, “I call the shot, I’m the hunter.” The message of this song is the most unlike the rest of the album, which is about enjoying art and life through dancing and celebration. “Beg For Me” starts off with a simplistic, addictive baseline overlaid by a laid back, talk-rap repetition of the phrase, “Dance For Me. Work For Me. Beg For Me.” By the chorus, the song bursts into a sugary-sweet, energetic tune that oddly clashes with the girl crush, “dangerous-girl” attitude reflected in the lyrics. 

“Bambeleo”: 4.25/5

The fourth track “Bamboleo,” which translates to “swaying” in Spanish, is a delicious, retro city-pop song that perfectly portrays the warm, comforting and sparkly feelings of spring. A song with fairy-like vocals and angelic falsettos, the lyrics describe the euphoric feeling of dancing freely on a spring night. Accompanied by enchanting synth sounds and electric guitar, “Bamboleo” is the perfect listen for a nighttime stroll or drive, and is the most comforting song on the album. 

In My Dreams: ⅘

The last track on the album “In My Dreams” wraps up the album with a pretty, pink bow. It begins with soft, subdued vocals and chime instrumentals, and builds up into the chorus with powerful singing. Unlike “Feel My Rhythm,” the instrumentals are not overly layered, allowing for easy listening and cohesion. However, the song gets repetitive, with each member singing the lyrics “In my dreams, you love me back” over and over. 

Overall Thoughts: ⅘

“Feel My Rhythm” is a well-crafted, versatile album that combines soft and mature tunes with infectious and bright bops. The album embodies Red Velvet’s fresh but eccentric feel, perfect to welcome spring.