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The More Compelling Anime Opening/Endings

Digimon Applimon Op
An essential part of an anime are of the insert songs: whether they are fitting and well thought-out such that it fits the theme of the series. Objectively speaking, the anime series I've watched and like often have amazing soundtracks and/or fantastic song collaborations - be it between bands or voice actors; the music often brings out elements that the anime series wants the viewers to focus on.

Insert songs can consist of OSTs - Original Soundtracks - and the opening and ending songs. Opening and ending songs often have customised animation to go along with, to give an idea what the viewer can expect, and to close it on a theme relevant to the anime, respectively.

Days Op
Because of that I am more drawn towards anime openings and endings, and shall be recommending some of which I thought was actually quite interesting and maybe even moving to the audience.

Bungo Stray Dogs ed 1
Admittedly I might be quite biased here in the sense that I'm not a very frequent watcher of anime: I often only start watching a series just because it was trending in a certain part of the internet, and it's often of the more popular, "mainstream" kinds of anime. There is also this belief that "mainstream" anime is not as good as it may seem as compared to the more low-profile but "better" series in terms of perhaps character development, setting, plot etc.

I do think however that oftentimes anime series that got popular rightfully earned that status due to their ingenious storytelling or plotlines, to name a few reasons, and have at the very least decent enough opening/ending songs to boot as well - for me, they almost always never disappoint in that area.

yuri on ice ed
With as few spoilers as I can mention, here are some of my favourites:

1. Orarion by Nagi Yanagi
Ending of the Second Season of Seraph of the End

Seraph of the End starts with Hyakuya Yuuichirou who gets captured by vampires when a man-made virus wipes out everyone older than 13 years of age. The story then follows of his struggles in an apocalyptic world where all parties desperately fight for their survival and honour,

Season 2 is where the plot thickens, and where more powerful forces have to be fought against. In a world where the rest of the survivors also dabble in some sort of dark powers and magic, it's easy to lose sight of one's humanity and regard for others.

The song starts out with a slow melody, but eventually builds up to projecting the fears, and hope in struggling in a difficult situation. The piano accompaniment and drums in the background make it quite a soothing piece to listen to. I found it quite fitting for the series; it can also tell of the main protagonists' continuous will to right what went wrong despite of the many harrowing encounters they face.

2. Sore wa Chiisana Hikari no Youna by Sayuri
Ending of Boku Dake Ga Inai Machi (Erased)

The singer's child-like voice is reminiscent of the main character's unintentional travel-back in time to where he was a kid, to save a classmate which in turn could enable him to save his murdered mother in his timeline. The song starts with an acoustic guitar in the background: and eventually builds up - as if the song is echoing the main character's wish to save the classmate.

3. Namae wo Yobu yo by Luck Life
Ending of First Season of Bungou Stray Dogs

Season 1 of Bungou Stray Dogs does not seem to have any fixed storyline, but it does tell of what happens after Nakajima Atsushi, the main protagonist, gets rescued and the struggles he faces after escaping from the orphanage where he once lived at.

The song is mostly slow rock: steady drum beats, acoustic guitar strumming, and to top it off, an excellent vocalist to bring out the emotions of longing- the song title is literally to call out a name: perhaps of Dazai's, a mentor to both Atsushi...

and in the past, Akutagawa Ryuunosuke.

4. Nandemo Nai Ya by RADWIMPS
Ending of Kimi No Na Wa (Your Name)

In line with the story, the song talks of an unbreakable connection between the two main characters, and how they feel towards each other. And yet another song with that sort of slow rock melody and a powerful vocalist - it must be one thing I feel makes for a good emotional presentation without the background instruments drowning out the vocals.

There is no accompanying animation for the ending song, only that it starts to play at the last few minutes of the movie, but it is a good closure nevertheless.

5. LEO by tacica
Ending of Season One of Haikyuu!!

I do think I am being biased here - the ending animation is based off Kageyama, my favourite character from the anime. However I like how simple it is, like the song itself: it only shows Kageyama training and practising volleyball by himself, of how earnest he is to continuously be better at the sport and how much he enjoys it.

6. History Maker by Dean Fujioka
Opening of Yuri!!! On Ice

From an outsider's point of view, it sounds like ballet music. Quite an apt description especially when the anime is of competitive ice skating. It is also the first time I've heard an anime opening not of the typical hyper shounen vibes with some aggressive rock thrown in, or the more emotional soulful singing. Electronic and pop elements makes up most of the song, like some internationally famous songs: as if the anime seems to be appealing to the international audience (which is what I think they are trying to do!) :)

7. Great Escape by Cinema Staff
Ending of Shingeki No Kyojin

And hype for the new season which will be coming very soon, next year! The anime is also well-known for its epic openings, and the endings, though not as epic, also serve as a sort of nice closure to every episode as well.

It's of the "typical" rock music, but also tells of the characters' great desire in the military to defend humanity and regain what they have lost from the Titans' attacks on them. I also like how the guitar solos and riffs are done for this song :D

full version/ending video

So as mentioned, these are just some of the openings and endings I like. I also really like the kind of effort the creators go out to putting in for these section, which leaves a deeper impression on me.

Sadly I won't be able to do this anytime soon, but if you're interested you can support these musical artists by buying the albums off sites like amiami, CDJapan, amazon, etc.

Thank you for reading thus far, let's look forward to yet another year filled with great stories and animation!

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