10 best anime soundtracks, ranked

Japanese animation is a medium that spans many genres, from shonen to romance, and even slice of life. However, anime isn’t just about a story or animation. Whether it’s the opening credits, the closing, or the overall musical score, the soundtrack is an important part of the identity of any animated series.

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If done well, the music can be linked thematically to the series through instrumentation or composition, and reflect a character’s mood or desires. This helps set the tone while adding to the style the series is looking for.


ten My hero university

Clair Clairvoyance with glowing red eyes frowning in MHA: World Heroes' Mission

My hero university is a story about promising young superheroes and one of the best western anime series, overall. As such, the series needs an audio backdrop that sounds upbeat and heroic in order to get the mood right.

Composer Yuki Hayashi gets the job done with sweeping orchestral strings and blowing electric guitars, the standout track being “You Say Run”. Although the song became a meme for a while, it did so for good reason: because it’s a song that expresses the feeling of a hero blossoming.

9 Death threat

Light Yagami from Death Note holding Death Note and smiling

Death threat is the quintessential thriller anime, so it requires a soundtrack that increases the suspense. With the intense duel of guitar and piano to represent Light Yagami and L respectively, Death threatThe soundtrack does a good job of building on the tension of the cat-and-mouse game between the two protagonists.

Light’s theme resembles an introduction to a Radiohead song, while L’s theme has hints of The Exorcist, related to the horror aspect with the involvement of the Shinigami. Both seem meticulous and methodical, signifying the clash of spirits.

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8 Baccano!

Baccano!  collage of main characters

Baccano! is Sand the United States during the Prohibition era and follows a large number of characters as they travel on a transcontinental train from Chicago to New York.

Each character has their own desires and goals, which often clash and end in a “heckling”, which is the definition of the Italian title. This series offers a multitude of playful and jazzy melodies to reflect the period in which it takes place. She sets the tone for drinking in a sweatshop with the threat of mob violence in the air.

7 Gurren Lagann

Simon does the Gainax pose

Gurren Lagann is a series of bombastic mechas that involves finding the motivation and the spirit to overcome overwhelming obstacles in a world that seems, in some ways, similar and, in other ways, very different from ours.

To reflect this, the soundtrack features an eclectic mix of genres, ranging from hip-hop to rock to orchestra. He uses rock guitar and rap vocals to crank things up, as well as orchestral strings and opera vocals to really pump up during those darker or grandiose speech moments mid-battle.

6 The attack of the Titans

Eren Yeager as Attack Titan

The attack of the Titans covers a wide range of emotions with many scenes to review. With a mix of chorus, orchestra, and synth, its soundtrack expresses a somber mood, as well as a sense of intense grandeur reflecting the scale of the Titans themselves.

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Using the same artist, Linked Horizon, brings a cohesive tone to each season’s openings, as they bring an interesting blend of ’80s hair metal reminiscent of Dragonforce’s “Through the Fire and Flames”, with a composition that almost looks like to a national anthem for what is humanity’s last refuge.

5 Space dandy

The main crew of Space Dandy looks curious.

If there is one word to sum up Space dandy, it’s “groovy” and the soundtrack is up to par. Filled with funky basslines, smooth synth leads and tight drum beats, lots of Dandy’The soundtrack sounds like something from a Daft Punk album.

Dandy is all about being free-spirited and having fun in a ‘get lost to dance’ way, so the synth-funk-disco fusion lends itself well to its anachronistic pseudo-60s-retro-futuristic aesthetic.

4 FLCL

Chaotic artwork with the cast of FLCL and a handful of robots.

FLCL, Where crazy cooly as it was called in the English version, is the coming-of-age story of Naoto, a 12-year-old boy in a small town. Her life is turned upside down by Haruko, a girl riding a Vespa and the bass guitar.

Reflecting this in a not-so-subtle way, the soundtrack instrumentation is still heavy on Garage Band style guitar and drums. The music of The Pillows brings a punk aesthetic to the show, adding to the tale of a nostalgic child of a small town struggling for his own independence.

3 Samurai Champloo

Warriors in silhouette in Samurai Champloo

For many Anime fans, Samurai Champloo was their first exposure to anything resembling the lo-fi genre. The series is much more episodic than plot-driven, as each episode follows the antics of Jin, Mugen, and Fuu, most of which don’t relate to their cowardly goal of finding a samurai that smells of sunflowers.

Using cool hip-hop beats and complex jazzy chords, this soundtrack reflects the laid-back nature of the series. It probably even inspired artists like Flying Lotus, as well as other lo-fi musicians.

2 Jojo’s bizarre adventure

JJBA-Jojos-bizarre-adventure-all

Jojo’s bizarre adventure is largely inspired by pop music over generations since the ’70s, even explicitly using artist names and song / album titles to name characters and supporting abilities. The series used various pop songs for the outro, but Yes’s “Roundabout” is arguably the most iconic.

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The score, with a consistent Yugo Kanno theme from Part 3, establishes a specific tone for each main character in the anthology series while retaining the feel of track music mixed with guitar and saxophone riffs that made the songs homepage scenes as iconic as they are. are now.

1 Cowboy Bebop

Music is heavily infused into the DNA of Cowboy Bebop, the episodes are even called “sessions” (as in jam or recording sessions). The soundtrack is so intrinsic to the identity of Bebop as the main theme of the title, “Tank! »Is reused for the next Netflix live-action Cowboy Bebob adaptation, and Yoko Kanno, the original songwriter of the series, was brought back for that as well.

It has the explosive explosive energy of big band jazz with songs like “Rush” and “Bad Dog No Biscuit”, as well as the dark and more intimate energy of lounge music with “Cosmos” and “Waltz for Zizi”. The musical score for Bebop is well composed, impeccably performed, and lingers in the minds of anime and music fans.

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