From the final comeback of the week to one of the first. This post focuses on Red Velvet’s Seulgi, who made her solo debut on Monday was 28 Reasons – the title of both the lead single and debut mini-album. This is the first major release from a member of Red Velvet, since their Feel My Rhythm promotions from earlier in the year.
28 Reasons explore some dark and mature sounds, going further from even Red Velvet’s darkest releases. The song is described as a bass-heavy pop dance track. There isn’t much else to the instrumental aside from some whistling and crunchy gurgles effects during the chorus, so the background acts more of a blank canvas due to its minimalistic vibes. Though, it definitely sets the dark tone of the release. This idea of a ‘blank canvas’ enables Seulgi to really take reign in 28 Reasons, showcasing her powerful and stunning vocals that aren’t usually shown off in her group releases as it is done so here. I liked how she offsets the heavy bass with her vocals, which draws you in and doesn’t make 28 Reasons too heavy to digest. I also really enjoyed it when Seulgi amped up her vocals during the chorus, which instantly adds additional oomph and body to 28 Reasons. It does get slightly dry in the second verse, with no further build up occurs and begins the idea of the the song drying out as it progresses. You have to wait for 28 Reasons to reach the mid-point of the bridge to hear it briefly change momentum with a complete stripping of the background, replacing it even with a more vibrating synth and Seulgi rap-speaking in the bridge. This is soon followed with an amazing high note, before reverting back to the same chorus but with extra oomph through what seemed liked an additional layer of vocals on top of what we heard earlier on in the song and ad-libs that follow on nicely from that high note. I do feel that 28 Reasons could have used something more within the background, particularly in that second verse region, just to give it that different feel and give the song more momentum. But overall, 28 Reasons is a good solo debut track that highlights Seulgi’s strengths.
Just like the song, the music video explores dark and mature territory with a very moody, edgy and haunting concept. The moody and edgy sides comes in abundance throughout the video, through the choreography shots and solo moments. I liked how they also share a minimalistic vibe (just like the song) with a very spacious backgrounds and sets with not much going on. The haunting imagery comes during those scenes where Seulgi stands in the grass between transmission towers. In particular, that scene at the very of the video where she stares into the camera. The video, overall, pretty much sums up the song in a visual manner.
I read somewhere recently that the hand actions in the choreography of 28 Reasons was inspired by the Scarlet Witch’s hand motions in Wandavision. That is pretty cool and a nice little crossover for someone who enjoys both KPOP and Marvel Cinematic Universe. I really enjoyed how smooth her movements were. Her charisma and charms were also on full display throughout the performance, making it a captivating stage to watch.
Song – 8/10
Music Video – 9/10
Performance – 9/10
Overall Rating – 8.5/10