Epic Anime OSTs (Part 1)

久しぶりーち!Long time no Bleach!

I’ve been really busy with studying and exams for the past few months, and while I’m studying, I always need some epic battle music to pump me up. I wanted to share some playlists I’ve put together with some anime OSTs just in case anyone was looking for some motivational music. There are many great action/adventure anime out there with soundtracks composed by very talented musicians, so it’s difficult to compile everything into a single post, which is why I’ll be breaking this into a series of parts. Playlists may include a mix of songs from various anime from the same franchise. If you like the music, consider buying the soundtracks to support the composers and everyone involved in making them.

Pokémon

I don’t know about you, but the Kanto and Johto sagas were where Pokémon’s music really shined. That’s not to say that the more recent generations didn’t also have wonderful tracks, but I really enjoyed the time when Pokémon’s music had more tracks that combined orchestra and awesome guitar riffs. Pokémon Best Wishes has quite a lot of electronic sounds mixed in with their orchestra battle music, but I prefer those digital sounds to be mostly game-exclusive. There is also a different sensation when you listen to the old Pokémon music; it seems to capture the sense of adventure more than the music in recent series do. I can only attribute this to Ash Ketchum/Satoshi’s perpetual 10-year-old loop. Lately it seems like he doesn’t care so much about become a Pokémon Master or catching them all anymore. You know Pokémon was serious business when Ash’s cap had its own theme song.

Magi: The Labyrinth of Magic/The Kingdom of Magic

Magi currently has two soundtracks: Up to the Volume on Balbadd and To the Kingdom of Magic. The first OST has Middle-Eastern inspired tracks that fit well with the setting and mood of the first season of the anime, while it lacks powerful battle music like from the second season of the anime (when everyone starts getting stronger and there are powerhouse battles), it is an interesting combination of sounds. Overall, two great soundtracks from Sagisu Shiro, the man behind Bleach’s soundtrack (see part 2).

Fate/ Zero, Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works

Fate/Zero and Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works are action packed from start to finish, which can be expected with a story about a Holy Grail war between magician Masters and Heroic Servants that are legendary figures from history. The Fate/Zero and UBW soundtracks are fine examples of how music can be both powerful and emotional. The excellent use of a choir adds depth to the songs and really captures the essence of the characters’ emotions and their desperation. Fate/Zero’s soundtrack was composed by the extremely talented Kajiura Yuki while UBW’s soundtrack was composed by Fukasawa Hideyuki with Kajiura Yuki as a guest composer for the second season.

Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood

Here I will make the distinction between the first series and the Brotherhood remake. The two series have starkly different soundtracks due to the different composers (Oshima Michiru for Fullmetal Alchemist and Senju Akira for Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood). While the Brotherhood soundtrack was full of powerful battle music, the first series’s soundtrack had a greater number of melancholic, ethereal, and romantic music, which will definitely be worth showcasing when I make a list of emotional anime music. Though, speaking of emotional music, Brotherhood had “Trisha’s Lullaby” and “A New Journey.”

Naruto, Naruto: Shippuuden

Time for some variety. I think many people can agree that Naruto’s soundtracks are unique with their combination of ethnic string, wind, and percussion instruments and electric guitars or a western orchestra. I particularly enjoy the tracks that feature the shamisen alongside violins. Modern takes on traditional music will make for some very epic battle music. If you are interested in modernized traditional Japanese music like that from Naruto, try checking out the Yoshida Brothers. Naruto’s soundtrack was composed by Masuda Toshio, and Shippuuden’s soundtrack was composed by Takanashi Yasuharu.


Continued in Part 2

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