IRENE & SEULGI’s “Monster” & “Naughty”, one of the best albums and songs by KULTSCENE and Young Post
Young Post — The 15 best K-pop albums of 2020
5. Monster by Red Velvet’s Irene & Seulgi
When Red Velvet started back in 2014, the group was touted as being “red” in its bright poppishness and “velvet” in its more sophisticated R&B side.
They’ve toggled between the two throughout their career, though ultimately their biggest hits have been more upbeat than rhythmic. This album from two members of the group, known fondly by many fans as Seulrene, ups the ante on the smoother side Red Velvet has shown in the past: singles Naughty and Monster set the tone for the album’s sultry themes, revelling in their charismatic performance style and captivating stage presences. It may be the first release from them, but it’s hopefully not the last.
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18. “NAUGHTY” BY RED VELVET – IRENE & SEULGI
When Red Velvet – Irene & Seulgi first dropped the Monster mini album, K-pop Twitter was confused. “Where is ‘Naughty’?” fans trended as they investigated why a song listed on the original tracklist was nowhere to be found.
Everything about “Naughty” is bold, including the way it was released after its constituent album had already come out. Irene & Seulgi reach the pinnacle of their musical identity as a duo, combining smooth, groovy dubstep with a varied and dynamic vocal performance to deliver one of 2020’s slickest and most boppable tracks. “Naughty” was made truly memorable, however, through its choreography, which catapulted across through internet virality for its immaculate (and scrutable) use of tutting. The track is fashion-forward and cutting-edge, making you wonder how these two members, as part of the full Red Velvet, were chanting “Zimzalabim” and “Umpah Umpah” on stage only a year before. More than anything, “Naughty” is a testament to Irene & Seulgi’s versatility. The duo can invent and reinvent themselves over and over, so well that it feels like it shouldn’t be allowed.