Monday, June 20, 2011

It's not just pretty visuals, you know...

While anime can be absolutely stunning to look at, there's obviously a lot more to entice you.  There's storylines, dialog and so much more.  For me, one of the biggest elements to any great anime has to be a fantastic soundtrack.  I feel the same way about video games, and I've found that both mediums offer up some amazing auditory experiences.

You know music is good when not understanding the lyrics doesn't even matter!  The soundtrack in FLCL is absolutely outstanding, and it turned me onto a wonderful band called The Pillows.  The track above is found in FLCL, but it's just one example of how great this band is.  I picked up the entire soundtrack collection for FLCL to begin with, but now I own a few separate albums from The Pillows as well.  Unfortunately, I always seem to miss out on their band tours when they hit the states.

Now Death Note is an anime series that deserves a entire collection of posts, but that's for another day.  For now, I just have to say how ridiculously good the entire soundtrack is.  I'm sure it's even more enjoyable to those that have seen the series, since you'll tie certain moments in the anime to the music itself.  With that said, you can definitely enjoy the music on its own.  Just the other day I had a friend comment on this music to say how great it was, and they didn't even know what Death Note was.

Any self-respecting anime usually has a great theme song to go along with it as well.  Haibane Renmei is no exception.  This song is completely different from the ones above, but it's beautiful nonetheless.  These are tunes that can be appreciated by anyone, no matter their knowledge of anime.

Perhaps anime music is the perfect gateway to anime itself!  If you're trying to get a friend in on anime, why not let them hear some tunes from your favorite feature?  When they ask where the content comes from, show them instead of telling them!


  1. Getting this out of the way first: this is an EXCELLENT blog you have going! Of course, we shouldn't expect any less from the overlord of the Nintendo blogs; just don't be surprised when this blog becomes as famous as GoNintendo ;D

    Secondly, I agree wholeheartedly on the idea that anime can introduce you to some great music. Death Note is my absolute favorite manga and anime! L... I see a lot of myself in him.

    I might want to throw in that "Nurarihyon no Mago", which is now being translated in the US as "Nura: Rise of the Wolf Clan" has introduced many of my friends to my favorite band of all time, MONKEY MAJIK, which is fronted by two Canadian brothers with vast knowledge of the Japanese language, blending English and Japanese seamlessly with pop, rock, and even rap at times. Even those who may not like rap might appreciate some of the raps contained within the MONKEY MAJIK songs which feature them. There's so much thought put into the transitions between the singing, the rap, and the languages. Blaise, one of the vocalists, even has a solo project where he sings in English, Japanese, AND French!

    Excellent blog Kevin. Keep up the good work! I appreciate it.

  2. PS The Pillows are really great, I agree. ^o ^

    PSS I recommend MONKEY MAJIK's "Sora Wa Maru De.." album for starters >>

  3. Anime is full of amazing music. Time and time again some unknown composer comes along and shows up just about everything Hollywood has compose in the last couple of decades. Music should never be brushed off regardless of where it came from. There are dozens of garbage anime, games and films that have amazing soundtracks, but the composer never gets any recognition because of the work their music is attached to. RMC, you should check out the score for Fractale. Haven't seen the anime, but the OST is phenomenal.

  4. Cowboy Bebop's music was built around it. Yoko Kanno did an excellent job on it. Every song has its own meaning even the ending song as well. I could listen to the music all day long.

  5. what about Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann? that has an amazing soundtrack

  6. You know, I've never really been that into anime music, or themes that they license for it. Sure, there are a few that stand out, and some I like to listen to on occasion, but I have that same feeling where, in a truly great sound track, I know every single track by heart.

    If there's any anime I'd buy a soundtrack for, it's Welcome to the NHK. But I'm not that desperate for it.

  7. Baccano and Oh Edo Rocket stand out for their more jazzy soundtracks. If you didn't see the anime, you wouldn't even have noticed that it was a Japanese band playing the music. The ending theme of FLCL is about the only thing I liked about the series.

    On a small tangent, the Ouendan series on the DS introduces people to a lot of great J-Pop and J-Rock music and I listen to those quite often.