red velvet be natural
I’m already a huge fan of SM Entertainment’s Red Velvet and their cutsie, f(x)-lite debut single, “Happiness,” but I’ve been excited by the prospect of them breaking the SM rulebook by trying out a sexy concept.

What I thought would take a few years to happen has only taken a few months, with Red Velvet returning today with their second single; a cover of S.E.S.’s slinky R&B hit, “Be Natural.”

Right off the bat you can tell that this was a rushed comeback to try and deflect attention from Girls’ Generation after they kicked out Jessica for launching a plagiarized fashion line and dating Tyler Kwon, a.k.a. Yoko Ono with a receding hairline.

Red Velvet’s version of “Be Natural” is virtually identical to the 2001 original, which makes releasing a cover as their second official single pretty pointless, while their performance –while solid and visually appealing in all the right places– resembled a mid-year special or sloppy awards show where the artists never have enough time to fine tune their choreography to K-pop’s usual pristine standards.

“Be Natural” is a good song so it’s going to remain that no matter who sings it, and Red Velvet are still one of the year’s best rookie groups, but this whole comeback was so obviously a last minute thing that it’s hard to even treat it like an official single.

On a positive note, it’s nice to know that Red Velvet can pull off a completely different sound and style to the one they showed on “Happiness,” and I’m definitely still going to download “Be Natural” when the MP3 drops on October 13. I just hope SM can start treating Red Velvet like a real group instead of just something to rush out whenever they need to bury a scandal.

Update: Just watched the official music video.

Wow.

How was the performance so underwhelming, yet the MV so flaw-free, legendary, and iconic?