Song Review: Ten (WayV) – Paint Me Naked

Ten - Paint Me NakedTen is one of those fantastic SM finds with unlimited potential for solo stardom. He’s a bundle of charisma with a uniquely global appeal. Previous singles have capitalized on this, recorded in English with international trends in mind. This can be an asset and a limitation, and new single Paint Me Naked is held back by its sense of familiarity.

I feel a bit duped after the song’s teaser seemed to promise a punk pop energy. Instead, Paint Me Naked is the kind of mid-tempo bop currently littering charts worldwide. Ten does the best he can to infuse attitude and star quality, but this material is hopelessly generic. Blasts of rock guitar add grit to the instrumental, but the melody spins its wheels in a ho-hum approach that never goes for the jugular. For a song about wild, liberated love, Paint Me Naked simply paints by numbers. You can almost sense Ten longing to bust free of the song’s confines, but the timid arrangement never lets him.

This doesn’t mean Paint Me Naked is a failure. It’s a perfectly serviceable example of 2021-era top-40 pop. But while this style may elicit a subdued head nod, it does little to inspire excitement. The chorus is catchy (if melodically repetitive), and the track casts a few sparks during its guitar-heavy climax. Ten’s magnetic appeal keeps Naked engrossing despite its flaws. But, I long to hear him tackle a song that matches his skill. He’s primed for a solo career every bit as dynamic as agency seniors Taemin and U-Know. Material like this isn’t going to get him there.

 Hooks 7
 Production 8
 Longevity 8
 Bias 7


22 thoughts on “Song Review: Ten (WayV) – Paint Me Naked

  1. Couldn’t agree more! It did seem like it would be more punk and not plain pop. He needs better material because Jesus Christ why isn’t SM realising the talent they have in this boy?

    Liked by 3 people

    • Surprisingly in the Get Real podcast Ten indicated that the song and styling choices were his not SM’s for this track. He sort out the songwriters and producers on his own and worked with them on the track. The only thing he said SM told him no too was him wanting to only wear paint in the MV. He seemed really sweet in the podcast!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I can’t assume what Ten wants, but I liked some of the build up of the song and certain melodies. It’s painfully midtempo though and lacking in much of other stuff. I have a problem with some of the performance, cause some vocals feel… pinched I guess? Some of the vocals can be ear grating, which is a big detriment to me.

    Will you cover Triple7’s Presente and BDC’s Moon Walker by the way?


  3. To misquote Britney “My heart is saying yes, but my head is saying no.” The nth song this summer that sounds like One Direction to me.

    Let’s take this moment instead to appreciate how good of a performer Ten is. Mr International Pop hotness. I am pleased that SM is supporting his career in so many possible ways, putting him in every possible subunit. I hope that in time, Ten will be able to do what he wants to do and evolve like Taemin has into his own being.

    Liked by 6 people

  4. Yeah, this is perfectly fine – but with someone as charismatic and talented as Ten, “perfectly fine” feels more like a miss. There are little flashes of the kind of song he could pull off in this one, and it’s a bit of a tease.


  5. As Myma has said, this has been a very 1D-Esque summer, everyone is releasing songs that sound like they were made by them. Unfortunately, there have been no That’s What Makes You Beautiful moments from the 1D clones yet.

    Also, I know that advertising your own content ain’t good (I think I overdid my quota when I started my site lol), but on my blog, I have posted the first Song of the Summer review, please check it out 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  6. This song was a 4/5 for me. As this was my first time listening to TEN’s solo music, I was impressed. I do see what you mean about the song being a little contained at moments, though. If there was a bit more power, it would be a perfect song!


  7. Shrug. If I wanted to listen to perfectly serviceable 2021-era top-40 pop I’d be listening to that. Or this, I suppose, but since I don’t, I won’t.


  8. I swear to god though, if SKZ wastes a track on their upcoming album on a bland English-language track I’m gonna cry. I was super disappointed listening to MCND’s “trailer” until I realized it was actually a pre-release track.

    Liked by 3 people

    • I am nervous about this, too. It’s gonna be my first comeback as a fan so I really want it to be good. I think it’ll be a long album though so at least one track wouldn’t be too much of a waste. I also don’t see them going this route, primarily because they have 2 native English speakers already, so if they wanted to do that they could have done it easily a long time ago. And a huge portion of SKZ’s current fanbase is already overseas, afaik they have just recently become popular domestically, so going the “Dynamite”/”Butter” route would be an odd move.

      If we are going to see an English pop song from them, I think it’s going to be a single from the upcoming Deadpool movie, so probably not on this album!


      • Blehhhhh, I GUESS they can have one English track if they want, but the rest better be awesome. I mean, just because I liked 16 out of 17 tracks on their last album (sorry “Universe”) and LOVED maybe 5 or 6 of those, I might maybe have high expectations. So far “Cheese” sounds like a possible banger, “Compulsion” sounds promising, “Gone Away” will probably grow on me so long as I.N doesn’t have too many lines (sorry I.N), and “Surfin'”… probably won’t.


        • I am the most excited about “Compulsion”…… for reasons that have everything to do with the music of course.

          Poor Jeongin! I guess you’re just not a fan of his vocal style?

          Liked by 1 person

          • Yes, the … music … looks like it’s going to be … something. Ahem.

            Sadly, I really do not like Jeongin’s vocal style (and it’s so hard to say that without imagining his sad puppy dog face). His parts in their title tracks tend to be minimal enough that they kind of fade into the background, but I have no idea how they’re going to blend him in with Han and Seungmin in a unit track. I’m hoping someone at JYP can do some mixing magic.

            Liked by 2 people

            • His vocals aren’t super distinctive or exciting to me but they don’t bother me. Aw his puppy face. He really is cute, isn’t he? Idk if you watched Kingdom but I barely knew who he was at the time and when he cried cause he was disappointed in his performance, my heart dropped out of my chest. I was like CHAN GET OVER HERE RIGHT NOW THE MAKNAE NEEDS YOU lol

              Liked by 1 person

              • Bleh, KINGDOM. Yeah, I became a “knows their names and watches variety content” in late 2020 when I was putting together an annual MV playlist to share with friends and ran across “God’s Menu” and “Back Door”. They were in fact the very first group I became a fan of and they remain my number two after A.C.E. I heard about the I.N thing on KINGDOM but didn’t watch it – after the first episode I only watched the performance clips and very few BTS clips because the shit they put these kids through pisses me off and makes me not want to be a fan of kpop generally, and I’d rather stick my head in the sand a little bit so I can keep enjoying something that brings me happiness.

                Liked by 2 people

      • I don’t know if I buy the number of native speakers as a reason for or against releasing English tracks, but it would make sense for them to be a little more focused on the domestic market right now. I’ve been out of the Deadpool release schedule loop (I didn’t love the first one as much as most people and skipped the second one), but yes, SKZ need to be on that soundtrack.

        Liked by 1 person

        • I’m not familiar with the franchise at all (not a superhero movie person) but given where they’re at with SKZ/Ryan Reynolds interactions I do think some sort of collaboration is more or less a given at this point.

          Liked by 1 person

  9. I really like Ten but this song was not for me at all. The MV was great , loved it but the music not so much. I was so hyped only to be let down. I agree with your rating.


  10. An online friend and I were briefly discussing about this song and he brought up about how it sounds like Woodz’s “Bump Bump”, but more messy. And I couldn’t agree more (I mean, when Woodz has a key change? How do you fight that? Key changes are one of my favourite things in songs and there needs to be more of them!).
    After that comparison he made, I too can’t help but feel that Ten’s “Paint Me Naked” was missing, something.

    Now, I’ve only listened to a few NCT songs as well as SuperM and Wayv, so I don’t have an opinion on Ten; both his variety character and his skills as a performer.

    Having said that, I think his performance and his charisma elevated this song because the music underneath is nothing to write home about apart from the use of electric guitar. Ten sounds so expressive to me (even if the production manipulates his voice to make him a lot louder at certain parts), and I can definitely see why people like him!

    I’m a sucker for rock so I like this song. Maybe with a few tweaks to the instrumental underlining Ten’s vocals and I think it would have been really good.

    For now, “Paint Me Naked” seems to show another side of Ten; a sneak peak to what his solo career could potentially be if that’s what he aspires to be.


  11. It’s superior bubblegum pop and I’ll take it. It’s no Dream in a Dream, but it’s solid. And the video is completely addictive. I really like the chemistry he has with his dancers.

    Liked by 1 person

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