Yoasobi, the Japanese music duo of composer Ayase and vocalist Ikura got their first whiff of fame with the release of their debut single “Yoru ni Kakeru”. The song struck gold, where it topped the charts on Spotify and went viral on TikTok. The song would also win the Sony Music Award, and the Grand Prize from Monocon 2019. Ayase and Ikura’s career would never be the same.

Their path to success wasn’t an easy one. Prior to starting Yoasobi, Ayase was a struggling J-rock musician who often took part-time jobs to supplement his meager income as an artist. But he would continue to chase his dream. A key breakthrough would come when his sister suggested that he check out Vocaloid software. Using Vocaloid, he was able to increase his compositional output significantly, leading to his first taste of success when he released “Last Resort” in April 2019. Around this time, Ayase started receiving more offers to produce music, most notably for song adaptations inspired by short stories. These offers prompted him to look for a vocalist and found one in Ikura when he listened to her song covers on her YouTube channel and asked her to join the Yoasobi project.

On Ikura’s end, her path to success also encountered setbacks. Though she attended a music academy in Japan and focused on singing and songwriting, she would experience repeated rejections at auditions. A breakthrough would come when a Sony producer took an interest in her talent and gave her the chance to participate in a new artist training course. But again, subsequent auditions never seemed to pan out and the few bands she joined never quite succeeded in attaining success. At least, not until Ayase reached out to her for Yoasobi.

As mentioned above, success would come quick with the success of their debut single “Yoru ni Kakeru”. They’d go on to write songs like “Kaibutsu” (“Monster”) and “Comet”, the opening and ending themes for the second season of Beastars. There’s also “The Blessing”, for Mobile Suit Gundam: THE WITCH FROM MERCURY, and of course, “Idol” for Oshi no Ko, which I consider to be the best anime opener in 2023. Their latest anime work “Yuusha”, serves as the opening theme to Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End.

Notable Albums/Singles

Recent Releases