Interview: Red Velvet

Client: Dazed Digital (2016).

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When Red Velvet exploded into the public consciousness in 2014, they were embarking on an intriguing dual concept that was uncommon for a female K-Pop group, pitching a slower, R&B-based sound (‘velvet’) against catchy pop music (‘red’). But it wasn’t just their music that set them apart: with the exception of acts like 2NE1 and Girls’ Generation, the target audience for K-Pop girl groups is generally men, with a tendency to box artists into the categories of either ‘sexy’ or ‘innocent’, existing (like most women in pop) to serve a fantasy as much as to entertain. Red Velvet, on the other hand, have a fanbase of predominantly young women, and they’re neither sexy nor innocent, with music videos that are often dark, trippy, sinister, or haunting, even when they’re flooded in pastel colours.

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