Tag Archives: anime opening

My Top 10 Favorite Anime Openings (As of April 2022)

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

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In the latter months of last year, I put out a post detailing my favorite anime. For as superficial as it might be to try and pin down favorites, it was a post that I had a lot of fun working on, both organizationally and in writing it. So, I thought it would be a good idea to work on another listicle, and talk about some of my favorite anime openings. While their is some crossover between the two, my favorite openings tend not to be attached to my favorite shows, so this will probably still end up being a surprise for most.

HM: Fiction – Sumika – Wotakoi OP 1

I figured this time around it would be worth including at least one of the honorable mentions so that people know what else was in contention for my top 10. Vocalist Sumika has some damn good pipes, and man is that chorus infectious as hell. On top of that, the visuals are incredibly fun and give a really good representation of the personalities of the main characters. The main reason it is not only the list proper is that, while it is overall a really solid OP, the middle section drags a little bit more than the openings above it. Overall, though, a really solid piece.

10. Shounen Heart – Home Made Kazoku – Eureka 7

Listen, I already warned everyone this is going to be a weird list, so that means no judgment whatsoever (Jk, feel free to tell me how wrong I am in the comments). In all seriousness, I know this probably is not everyone’s cup of tea, however, the Japanese hip-hop group Home Made Kazoku sells the song with a passion that I kind of respect in a campy, 90’s hip-hop kind of way. Their near yelling over this saxophone accented beat is hype in a way that feels hard to explain. Visually, this is definitely the weakest of the openings on here, which is why it stays at number 10.

9. My Soul, Your Beats! – Lia – Angel Beats! OP 1

A theme that might emerge for some in my discussions of these openings is that I care way more about the music than the visuals. Of course, good visuals are nice, but when being compared to the angelic vocals of singers like Lia it feels way less important. That is not to say that the visuals of Angel Beats‘ first OP are bad. In fact, I think the through-line of Kana playing the Piano in various places across the school grounds is a great visual representation of how she manages to affect all of their lives while they figure out what is even happening to them. The visuals are definitely a lesser factor for me, but certainly not a non-factor.

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8. Chain – BACK-ON – Air Gear OP 1

Call it what you will, Nu Metal, Butt Rock, etc, the combination of rock and hip-hop elements has always been a staple in my musical diet, at least up until recently. Air Gear, meanwhile, feels like the perfect fit for the song. A show about battling on rollerblades might as well embrace the edginess. The opening definitely looks its age, with some pretty barebones movement, but it does at least have a narrative, and while the version above does not show it, the credits are pretty well integrated into said narrative.

7. Jiyuu no Tsubasa – Linked Horizon – Attack on Titan OP 2

On the other hand, maybe sometimes there can be too much narrative. Looking back at “Jiyuu no Tsubasa” while also just so happening to be in the middle of marathoning Attack on Titan (more on that later), it is pretty hilarious how many clues it just hands out. Still, what makes me like it more than its first-season counterpart, other than just being a contrarian, is the way it focuses on that mystery. The series is at its strongest while focusing on the secrets of the world they inhabit, and this opening does that the best, with no questions.

6. Katayoku no Tori – Akiko Skikata – Umineko no Nako Koro Ni

Fun fact: I have yet to watch a single second of the series proper, despite generally enjoying its predecessor Higurashi. On the other hand, why would I when this opening goes as hard as it does? After originally hearing the song in the background of Glass Reflections’ review of the series, I was instantly in love. It is one of the few openings on this list that I have known about for a long time, and musically it has stuck with me. Something about the chants in the beginning and the buildup to the chorus just feels right.

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5. Goodbye Bystander – Yuki – March Comes in Like a Lion OP 2

Of course, if we are talking about openings with a good narrative… Honestly, when everything was said and done, I expected Goodbye Bystander to be a bit closer to the bottom since I had never really remembered any of the March openings super fondly. Yet, as I went back and listened, I could not help but get swept away by the magical instrumentation accompanying Yuki’s heartfelt performance on this song. Both lyrically and visually, the song also talks about an important aspect of the show, one in which Rei is not only becoming more comfortable in his arrangement with the Kawamoto sisters but also realizing the debt he owes them.

4. Gravity Wall – Hiroyuki Sawano, Tielle and Gemi – Re:Creators OP 1

If there is one thing I resent about Amazon’s Anime Strike channel, other than being overpriced for no reason, it is keeping this show behind a paywall and thus not letting as many people see it. Re:Creators is such a phenomenal anime, and alongside it are two incredibly produced OPs, the first of which just happens to be more my speed. Add in the fact that the opening looks just as good as the rest of the anime, and it should be pretty obvious why it is this high.

3. Destiny – Neko – Phi Brain OP 3

I made a rule early on in the creation of this list that their would only be one opening per series. This is because, without that rule, Phi Brain very likely would have snagged three spots on the list. Both of its first two openings “Brain Diver” and “Now or Never” have been heavy in my rotation since I watched the series a few years back. Still, I went with with the third one because it is both visually pleasing and one of the harder hitting songs instrumentally. Neko is an expressive vocalist who commands attention not only during the chorus but throughout the song.

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2. ft. – Funkist – Fairytail OP 3

The reason I clarified my focus on music as opposed to visuals beforehand is because, well, this opening is as high as it is on the music alone. While it is definitely better than some of other openings here as far as the animation, it would definitely be lower were my focus changed. However, that does not matter much considering how incredible the music actually is. The use of flute as one of the primary drivers of melody in the song gives it this really interesting property of being continually hopeful despite some of the darker turns. Fairytail is probably one of the worst when it comes to the whole power of friendship thing.

1. Database – Man With a Mission/Takuma – Log Horizon OP 1

Was it ever really a competition? the answer is yes, it definitely was. However, Log Horizon‘s hard hitting Man With a Mission opening beats it out, partially on nostalgia but also because it takes a lot of what I like about Air Gear‘s opening and turns it up to 11. It may not be as distinct musically as some of the other openings here, but the computerized intro and solid English verse delivered by Takuma certainly give it an identity of its own. On top of that, the art and action present in the series translate really well into the animation, which just looks really cool, even if the storytelling is limited. “Database,” at least for now, is my favorite opening.


And that’s the list, Is there an opening that I missed? One you just want to recommend? Should I do anime endings next? Let me know down in the comments.

If you are interested in reading more from me, check under blog to read my most recent stuff, or look below for some related posts. Also, if you would like to support Animated Observations, consider donating on Ko-fi or through paypal, or pledging on Patreon. You can even support by just liking and sharing this post.

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Check out my writing blog, Solidly Liquid!

As always, special shoutout to Jenn for supporting the blog on Patreon

If you can’t, or just don’t feel like it, no worries. Thank you all for reading, and goodbye, for now, friends!

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Top Three Favorite Anime Openings of 2019

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

The end of the year is fast approaching, and because of that, I thought it would be good to do a little bit more reflecting. Now, it is safe to say that overall it has been a great year for anime, but it has also been good amazing for anime openings. Time to talk about some of my favorite openings of 2019.

3. Promised Neverland – Touch Off by UVERworld

It did not take long after I started watching The Promised Neverland that its opening became one of my favorite parts about the show. This is not to say that the show is bad, it is actually phenomenal. However, the more energetic nature of the music, combined with the visuals that foreshadow the events to come, make it one of my personal favorites of the year.

2. Dr. Stone – Good Morning World! by BURNOUT SYNDROMES

Dr. Stone honestly has two very good OP’s, but for the purpose of this list I decided to go with the first one, because to me, Good Morning World not only looks more interesting visually, but musically has the same sort of fast paced, fun energy that is present in the series itself, at least for the first half anyway.

1. Carole and Tuesday – Kiss Me by Nai Br.XX and Celeina Ann

Carole and Tuesday was probably the best musical experience I have had all year with an anime, and no I do not just mean that because it was centered around music. It could have been very easily messed up or made haphazardly without any thought and come out terribly. Luckily, sitting at the helm of direction for the show was Shinichiro Watanabe, the man behind Cowboy Bebop and Samurai Champloo, two other series known for their great musical scores. Kiss Me takes everything that the is great about the show’s music and combines into one animated sequence, perfectly demonstrating just why the show it is attached to is so great.


What were some of your favorite openings this year? Let me know in the comments below.

If you are interested in reading more from me, check under blog to read my most recent stuff, or look below for some related posts. Also, if you would like to support Animated Observations, consider donating on Ko-fi or through paypal, or pledging on Patreon. You can even support by just liking and sharing this post.

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

Check out my writing blog, Solidly Liquid!

If you can’t, or just don’t feel like it, no worries. Thank you all for reading, and goodbye, for now, friends!

Opening of the Week: No Pain, No Gain by Nano (Btooom! OP)

There are very few openings which I have repeatedly listened to hype myself up. Not that all OPs are meant to do this, of course, but of the more upbeat songs I’ve heard, most I just listen to once and for the rest of the show. No Pain, No Gain, however, is not one of those openings. It is an opening that not only has a great instrumental but an extremely powerful female vocalist.

Btooom!, like many of its battle royale contemporaries, has a sense of urgency and desperation in its action. Each of the characters is trying there hardest to survive, and all have a different motivation for what drives them to stay alive, be it selfish or otherwise. In Btooom’s case, that urgency and desperation are further emphasized by the weapons that players use to fight: bombs. Knowing that they could be used at any place and at any time means that the show’s characters are constantly on their toes. Naturally, then, it would make sense for the show’s opening to accurately depict that range of emotions.

And, in fact, Btooom’s opening does this quite well. The extremely rock heavy instrumental makes you feel the pressure of trying to survive while others are out to get you. One of the best parts of the song is during the opening seconds, where the guitar takes up the entirety of the instrumental, and the lead vocalist, Nano, who lends her vocal talents to add to the strained and extremely intense atmosphere.

Nano is definitely a lot of the reason this song works. Her deeper voice adds a level of seriousness that would not necessarily be present had it been performed by another artist. Her lyrics in the song also very much mirror the story of the show’s two main characters, Ryota and Himiko, who was very much thrown into a world they knew nothing about and were forced to fight there way out.

Probably the least impressive part of the opening overall were the lyrics, which definitely rang as a little bland sometimes, but still managed to get the message across well. Overall, definitely worth a watch/listen.


What do you guys think of this opening? Let me know in the comments below. Also, if you want to support the Aniwriter through donations or are just feeling generous, consider buying me a coffee on Ko-Fi. Otherwise, thanks for reading and bye for now, Friendos!

Opening of the Week: Haru ga Kite Bokura by Unison Square Garden(Sangatsu no Lion 2 Opening 2)

If March Comes in Like a Lion is known for anything else aside from its terrific writing, It would be its surprisingly impressive openings, and Sangatsu no Lion’s second season second opening fits this description perfectly. Maybe not as visually impressive as some of the show’s other OPs, but still visually stimulating in its own right. For this week’s Opening of the Week: Haru ga Kite by Unison Square Garden.

The opening seems to largely reflect the recent events in the show, which as of the last episode has been signaling an end to Hina being bullied. It also reflects the changing nature or Rei, and how through his association with the Kawamoto sisters and others has gained a new confidence in himself.

The music, however, is what makes this opening. A somewhat classic rock sounding song backed by orchestral instruments, Hare ga Kite Bokura has a similar feel to the show’s first opening by the band BUMP OF CHICKEN.

This makes sense considering the instrumental comes from Unison Square Garden, a band that has done other openings such as “Counter Identity” from Soul Eater. Their rock edge mixed with an assortment of other instruments has always made their openings some of the most memorable.


Hopefully, the winter season brings us some other wonderfully openings to cover, but what did you guys think? Good? Bad? Mediocre? Let me know in the comments below. Thanks for reading and bye for now, Friendos!

Opening of the Week: Tank by Yoko Kanno and The Seatbelts(Cowboy Bebop)

Jazz is a genre not often represented in the music scene, even in its home of America. Granted, this is likely because of its declining popularity since its inception in the 1920’s, and that goes double for anime. There are occasional gems like the recent “Kids on the Slope,” but it is not prominent in the music landscape. It is a shame too because at the top of the genre’s musical givings are song’s like Tank. Welcome to Opening of the Week, where this week we’ll be looking at one of Yoko Kanno’s greatest musical accomplishments: Tank.

Cowboy Bebop hosts a diverse range of musical genres, but being one of the first songs you hear from the show’s soundtrack, Tank certainly leaves an impression that not many other songs do. The song opens with a voice saying “I think it’s time to blow this popsicle stand. Alright, one two three let’s jam!” Immediately the song goes from sounding like the opening of a spy movie to full-blown Jazz explosion.

Although, I guess you could say that most of the song after the initial build-up sounds like the soundtrack for a classic Bond movie, but this song sounds a lot better.


How do you guys feel about the opening? Is it a favorite of yours? Don’t really care for it? Let me know in the comments. Thanks for reading and bye for now, Friendos!

 

Opening of the Week: Tabi no Tochuu by Natsumi Kiyoura(Spice and Wolf)

Any opportunity to talk about Spice and Life is a good one, and the show’s phenomenal first opening is no exception. The show’s second opening is also quite lovely, but I chose this one because I think it also encaptures what the show it’s attached to is all about. Its slow, quiet build to an extremely beautiful chorus makes it stand out as one of best anime openings I’ve ever seen.

The title of the song roughly translates to “On a Journey.” This is obviously referring to the many journeys that Lawrence and Holo take in order to get her back to her home, but it also refers to their own personal journey, both in terms of their relationship and their individual personalities. Lawrence learns that he is often too uptight in his approach to the world and that he should learn to enjoy his journey more. Meanwhile, Holo learns that not all humans are bad and that learning to be more trusting is the first step in living in the human world.

The lyrics go into more details about their journeys to new places and their journey together. The song musically starts out as a slow Piano ballad, almost like a lullaby, but as the song goes on it changes and becomes more powerful as the song lyrics talk more about the journey that Lawrence and Holo will have together, symbolizing their excitement for the future.

The song’s tone is also set well by the female vocalist Natsumi Kiyoura. Her soft vocal tone, in the beginning, builds alongside the music and creates a feeling of power, of adventure.

If you haven’t seen Spice and Wolf, you should, but if you’re just looking for some new music, still check this out. It’s one of the best songs on Spice and Wolf’s OST and, in a weird way, kind of relaxing.


What do you guys think of this of this Opening? Let me know in the comments below. Thanks for reading. See ya, Friendos!

Opening of The Week: Here by Junna (The Ancient Magus Bride)

In trying to establish at least some level of consistency on this blog, I have decided to start posting an opening of the week. Each week, I will share an opening that I think is awesome and that you guys should listen to.

The inaugural episode is being dedicated to not only one of my favorite shows, but not my favorite openings: The first OP from The Ancient Magus Bride, Here by Junna.

I remember the first time I heard this opening a few weeks ago, and within the first 10 seconds, I could feel an intensity in the music. It wrung with an incredible amount of power, and the singer Junna’s voice was impressive, to say the least.

Cut to a few days ago when I read that Junna is only 16 years old, and that her first album came out this year! Talk about talented. Her powerful voice, combined with the Celtic influence behind the musical production, and you get an opening perfectly fit for a show like The Ancient Magus Bride.

I don’t know about you, but this OP has got me jamming out every time I listen to it. In Fact, you might be able to argue the music is too intense for a show like this. Highly recommend!