My Anime Instrumentality

I’m sure none of you whale sharks have ever noticed that I actually like music in my anime. I have lists of anime music in my iPod and a list of soundtracks that I rape on Youtube. I’ve never really bothered collecting my thoughts on it, but I guess now is a good time since I actually managed to come up with this paragraph.

Opening Songs

I generally like OPs, even the generic ones. I guess something really clicks to me when a certain piece of music is made to pair with certain poppy animations and the synch is really eyecandy. I appreciate artsy fartsy OPs that try something different but I have to say, awesome synching is really the best. It’s like resonance, a certain piece of whatever is paired with another whatever to create something really REALLY cool.

Of course it actually has to sound nice. No matter how cool (or hot) the Mine Fujiko OP is, I’m not gonna put the music in my iPod since without the Animation+music synch, it would be just some old granny narrating sexy lines. Fate/Zero’s OPs aren’t exactly “original” since it’s just a bunch of random scenes that look cool put together with Kalafina’s hauntingly operatic voice but THIS I would put in my iPod. Raping the OP sequence aside, when I remember Fate/Zero, I remember this OP (and not some slutty grandma). It speaks of what Fate/Zero is.

OPs that I love:

again – YUI (Brotherhood OP 1) – I first heard YUI in one of Bleach’s OPs (rolling star) but her performance in Brotherhood is a tad bit more dramatic (but keeping the rock) and a lot cooler with the animation that synchs with it.

Hiyoku no Hane – eufounius (Yosuga no Sora) – The only good thing about Yosuga no Sora is the aesthetics, like the OST for example. This OP speaks volumes of the emotional highs of a tragedy of two lovers who cannot be together (or that’s how the beats felt) and this is what Yosuga no Sora is (or is supposed to be but its crap!).

Forever We Can Make It – THYME (To Love Ru) – It’s a really funky rock OP that complements the rather ecchi comic style of the OP. I’m one of the few that actually liked To Love Ru and its sexiness and this OP is constant reminder of its SEXY.

Level 5 – judgelight – fripSide (To aru Kagaku no Railgun OP 2) – Very epic and techno, it felt a lot larger than what it really is. The animation that went with it (Biribiri and Kuroko being all epic) just made it even epic-er so whenever I listen to this song, I can’t help but remember Railgun’s best parts. Generally though, I like most of fripSide’s works.

Let Me Be With You – Round Table ft. Nino (Chobits OP) –Ooooh ooohh oooh oooh yeah. A very simple yet very effective OP. Once Chii moved and touched Hideki, I was like “Power of Love!”

Ending Songs

Half the ending songs I watch, I just skip but there are really good ones. Ending Songs could either heighten up your emotional involvement of a show (Cross Game) or ruin it if ever so slightly (CLANNAD : AS). But when ending songs are good, they end up really good.

I especially love ending songs that segue through the last bits of the episodes. Some really make certain scenes 10 times better like Cross Game (again), Toradora, Anohana, AnoNatsu, Honey & Clover (get my vibe?)

EDs that I love:

Koi Kogarette Mitta Yume – ayaka (Cross Game ED1) – It’s very emotional and it really lifted Wakaba’s death and its aftermath to highs not many anime can reach.

Aru ga Mama – Anamu&Maki (Nabari no Ou ED 2) – The ending showed some refreshing bromance between two characters that couldn’t really get much rest in the entirety of the series. The aloofness and subtlety of the ED really reflects these two’s personalities. Plus it sounds really relaxing.

Can You Fly – Ishii Yasushi (Darker than Black Gaiden ED) – Just plain different from the usual rock songs. Again it sorta reflects the ongoing experiences and hardships of Hei and Yin.

Mistake – THE BAND HAS NO NAME (Honey and Clover ED 2) – Bike Ride beats Waltz’ ferris wheel sequences. It really is just an accident that I loop this more than usual. Seriously good stuff though when soundtripping at night.

Kimi no Shiranai Monogatari – Supercell (Bakemonogatari ED) – Words cannot express how much I love this song.

Original Soundtracks

Soundtracks bring life into anime. Whether it’s electronic techno or fully orchestrated, you can’t help but memorize some of the music in your head. When you start remembering the OSTs, I think that’s when you can call it Good. A soundtrack should bring the emotions of the anime to different heights yet stand out at the same time. Fortunately a lot of Anime are able to do this.

Best Pieces:

Song of Storm and Fire – (Insert piece in Tsubasa Chronicle) – This is definitely Kajiura’s masterpiece. I know she has Kalafina now but MY GOD does this piece still haunt me to this day.

Lapis Philosophorum – (Insert piece in Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood) – The goldmine in Akira Kenju’s full orchestral soundtrack, played by the Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra, Lapis Philosophorum really just complements the epic scenes in Brotherhood.

Will of the Heart – (Insert Piece in Bleach) – Nothing is as sad as this piece in anime. Bleach has a really good soundtrack but this stands out. It fulfilled the slightly somber, slightly mystifying, and slightly miserable side of the First 20+ episodes of Bleach.

Lost my Pieces – (Insert Piece in Toradora) – They play this in every scene that’s slightly more dramatic than the usual Toradora antics. Beautiful and melodic is all that I can say.

Monochrome – (Insert Song in STAR DRIVER) – It’s definitely the best of the transformation songs in STAR Driver.

Best Soundtracks:

Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood: Very orchestral, very bold, very eye poppingly epic. You cannot create a soundtrack heavier than this one.

Xxx Holic: I recognize a lot of its pieces. There are very haunting ones (Chidji no Tobira) and relatively light hearted ones (Small Box, Zashiki Warashi). It’s a well balanced soundtrack in which every single track is just slightly better than your usual mystery soundtracks.

Toradora: While the light soundtracks aren’t much (but they’re very memorable when you listen to them), the heavy ones are amazing. I repeat, I love Lost my Pieces.

Puella Magi Madoka Magica: It’s very different from the usual Kajiura. There’s a more “native” and “folky folk folk” vibe to it. Maybe it’s the use of flutes on some scenes. It’s like Fairy Tail meets Brotherhood type of music if you ask me.

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So yeah, this is me going all Anime Instrumentality. No offense though I really love that blog. It’s nice that I can collect my thoughts from time to time and combine different things I’ve learned and love in one post.

Anime Music really is something to behold.

8 thoughts on “My Anime Instrumentality

  1. Koi Kogarete Mita Yume is one of my favorite EDs as well. It triggered my tear glands during that wake scene of Wakaba. Lost Pieces is one of my favorite tracks from Toradora! too but Startup is really my top track from that OST.

    Haven’t listened to FMAB’s OST since I read the manga so I didn’t watch it but I remember the first series being epic in itself. The Brothers track was one of the great pieces from it.

    Monochrome was nice, it’s my fave maiden song alongside Komorebi no Contact. I liked Hayamin’s singing in that one. Monochrome sounds really haunting though.

    Not really a fan of Kajiura pre-Madoka because I didn’t like her works from Noir and Xenosaga that much. Credens is just awesome though. Made me saw her in a different light.

    • Koi Kogarete Mita Yume really makes you tear up everytime you listen to it. *sniff*. I’m currently learning Lost my Pieces on the piano but its pretty hard though it’s definitely because I’m just a newbie. You have to listen to FMA:B’s OST or at least Lapis Philosophorum. It really gave the anime an edge. IDK with the other Maiden Songs, nothing sat well with me except Monochrome.

      For Kajiura, you didn’t like her work on Phantom?!?!? Or on Kara no Kyoukai?!?!? (if you’ve watched it) At least listen to Storm and Fire though, I feel like that was the piece that made her really shine as a composer.

      • Tsubasa has been widely-regarded (at least by her fanbase) as Kajiura’s best work. For me, personally, I like Mai-HiME just a slight notch above with tracks like “Mezame” being as awesome as it is. And Kara no Kyoukai gets a bit of a boost from the way the tracks on the final CD were arranged. Feels like listening to a massive epic!

        And thanks for the shoutout!

      • Tsubasa was good but Storm and Fire really stood above others in that track for me. I’ve never watched Mai-HIME so I can’t really comment on that but Kara no Kyoukai was technically her first step into the Kajiura Yuki we know and love today.

  2. I don’t seem to find people that appreciates EDs as much as I do. I’ve always thought that like an ending to a story, an ED provides the closure to an episode, which is pretty damn important.

    Some of my favourites were Wired Life (Ao no Exorcist), Changes (Toushokan Sensou), Dear my friend (Railgun) and of course, Kimi no Shiranai Monogatari.

    I don’t really remember H&C’s Mistake. Though, I must have looped “Split” and “Waltz” a hundred times on my ipod…

    • Dunno, Mistake really hit me harder than Waltz. I like Dear My Friend a lot though I remember liking the 2nd ED more, and Wired Life felt really techno.

    • Haibane Renmei: It might have been good . . . or not. Go kill me now but I had quite a number of problems with Haibane Renmei to begin with to remember if the Soundtrack was good or not. I do remember the ED being sung by the same singer as the one from Asumanga Daioh.

      Mushishi: Mushishi is an amazing anime all around. The soundtrack must have been good but then again I don’t remember it all too well.

      Angel Beats: It had a good soundtrack. I even have a few songs of it on my iPod.

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