Weekly Anime Music Releases – February 11

Valentine’s Day approaches, signalling the discontentment of many singles and a deluge of anime singles. Granted, most of them aren’t too great and once again, the veterans like JAM Project and angela lead the way. So nothing for the cult of the new to dig in, which is just as well. That just means an opportunity to conserve the cash flow. So with that, here’s the list:

Anime OP/ED Singles

Durarara ED Theme

Durarara!! X2

Album Name: NEVER SAY NEVER
Artist: THREE LIGHTS DOWN KINGS
Purchase at: CDJapan
Durarara!!‘s ending theme rushes at you like a wild storm, using a distorted voice backed by some rocking tunes. This is a bit of a departure from the more mellow R&B stuff that you’ve heard from the first season’s ending themes, but if nothing else, at least this flies out in your face and leaves you some of idea of the sort of lingering thoughts the anime wants to internalize. I’m not sure that this is as good as the other themes we’ve heard out of Durarara, but if you don’t mind that reckless sort of energy and warbled vocals, I suppose you can’t go too wrong here.

Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso ED2

Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso

Album Name: Orange
Artist: Seven Oops
Purchase at: CDJapan
Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso, also known as Your Lie in April, has generally done well in the music department, though I’ve been hearing a bit of a blowback in that the second opening and ending themes are nowhere in the same ballpark as the first. I suppose a band that goes by Seven Oops doesn’t really inspire much confidence, but the song isn’t half bad, if just a bit on the generic side. The piano is mellow and the vocalist has a sense of clarity in her delivery. Granted, it’s not as good as the first ending theme, since the crime of being generic may just be a bit too much for people to bear, and that’s just as well since you’re not missing much by skipping over this album.

Fafner OPED Songs

Soukyuu no Fafner EXODUS

Album Name: Exist
Artist: Angela
Purchase at: CDJapan
Fair or not, whenever I look at the characters in Soukyuu no Fafner EXODUS, all I can think of is Gundam SEED, and that’s never a flattering comparison. This sort of disdain is a bit of a shame since angela isn’t that bad a singer and in EXODUS, she delivers a solid effort that includes good intonation, a few sharp cries that aren’t too grating. The ending theme is pretty poignant, with a backing violin that helps to bring out the emotions. So of the albums getting released, this one’s on a higher tier than the others because angela’s vocals are actually a step above most everyone else’s. [Read more…]

Weekly Anime Music Releases – February 4

February comes, and with that, we’re about 6 weeks away from spring. But that doesn’t mean much in the quality of the releases since most of the OP/ED themes are pretty poor. The albums are something to think about though, what with Hiroyuki Sawano plying his trade and a very awesome collection of Higurashi no Naku koro ni vocal music. Of the anime music releases, that is, far and away, the biggest highlight and is definitely worth getting. So with that, here’s the list:

Anime OP/ED Singles

AldnoahZero OP Theme

ALDNOAH.ZERO

Album Name: &Z
Artist: Hiroyuki Sawano, mizuki, Yu “Masshoi” Yamauchi, Toshino Tanabe, Hiroshi Iimuro, Yasuo Sano, Tetsuro Toyama
Purchase at: CDJapan
Starting with his work on ALDNOAH.ZERO, Hiroyuki Sawano has been digging his toes deeper into the opening and ending theme pool. From the first run of ALDNOAH.ZERO, we got “A/Z” which featured mizuki performing the ending theme to the anime. And now, we have “&Z”, which is now the opening theme and also features mizuki on vocals. Given his compositional talents, this song is an easy step up compared to most other opening and ending themes and should be checked out, regardless of whether you’re a Sawano fan or not. Obviously, keep this on a higher priority if you enjoy his works.

Durarara x2 OP

Durarara!! X2

Album Name: HEADHUNT
Artist: Okamoto’s
Purchase at: CDJapan
The Durarara!! franchise has always had some interesting music to throw at anime fans and this incarnation of the franchise, Durarara!! X2 is no exception, pulling in the talents of the rock band, the Okamoto’s to perform the anime’s opening theme, “Headhunt”. The group had prior anime work, namely, performing the 18th ending theme for Naruto: Shippuden after forming as a band in 2010. The group’s members all adopted the name Okamoto in honor of the artist Taro Okamoto. In this latest single, “Headhunt”, don’t expect any type of rock that would deviate from convention, but it’s pleasant music all around.

Testament of Sister Devil

Shinmai Maou no Testament

Album Name: Blade of Hope
Artist: sweet ARMS
Purchase at: CDJapan
Shinmai Maou no Testament, known in English as The Testament of Sister New Devil, is as junky a title as you might expect and probably won’t inspire too many people to give this particular album a look. And that’s just as well since sweet ARMS is a seiyuu group made up of Iori Nomizu, Kaori Sadohara, Misato, and Misuzu Togashi. We’ve never been too hot about seiyuu groups who sing for shows unless their vocal talents are worth looking at. And from where we stand, there isn’t anything for us to care too much about here. [Read more…]

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