MUSICJuly 12, 2021

Top 12 Iconic Anime Soundtracks That'll Have You Playing on Repeat

A tribute to unforgettable anime soundtracks.

At the beginning and end of every anime, there is a soundtrack or theme song that encapsulates the sentiment of the show. Original/official soundtracks (OST) are impactful for many reasons. Engraved in the music are long lost feelings from watching the show when you were a child, a bittersweet romance frosted with nostalgia, or a stirring aspiration to be like one of the characters. Whatever the reason, we listen to these songs because they are a monument to sensation, a memory of a treasured experience. Here are 12 of the most iconic Anime OST (in no particular order) to put in your music playlist on repeat. 

1. “Unravel” - Tokyo Ghoul  

One of the most iconic songs on this list, “Unravel” from Tokyo Ghoul celebrates the insanity of living in two worlds, and nurses the mental fracture of hosting multiple identities. As a plus, if you can play this song on piano, I would invite you to my wedding.

2. “My Hero” - One Punch Man

The OST for One Punch Man takes you by surprise. The music captures the anime’s satirical drama of being an overly powerful superhero who seeks a worthy opponent. It also has the most powerful ending to any OST.

3. “Kawaki wo Ameku” - Domestic Girlfriend

You might not have heard of this anime. Frankly, the anime itself is mediocre. However, the OST is majestic. Minami renders a stunning vocal performance in this piece that compensates for emotions lacking in the actual show.

4. “Bluebird” - Naruto

Bluebird is a song that people who’ve never watched Naruto and never watched anime will likely know. It’s catchy, it’s got pop, and it illustrates Naruto’s dream of becoming the Hokage of the Leaf Village.

5. “The Day” - My Hero Academia

Being the number one show for many people, MHA had to make the list. This song is a classic and would be part of the Anime Music Hall of Fame (if there was one).

6. “Guren no Yumiya” - Attack on Titan  

Listening to “Guren no Yumiya” is like walking into the middle of a battlefield, with mortars going off left and right, and your commander yelling at you to charge the enemy. It’s definitely one of the best songs, and a good edition to your workout playlist.

7. “Gurenge” - Demon Slayer

One of Lisa’s most famous songs, “Gurenge” is a ghostly melody. It creeps forth softly before jumping into a chorus charged with adrenaline. It also has a dozen remixes on Spotify, my favorite one being the dubstep version by JVNA.

8. “Centimeter” - Rent a Girlfriend

Much like “Kawaki Wo Ameku”, “Centimeter” is a song that you would watch the anime just to listen to. When the season ended, fans lamented more over the termination of this song than the termination of the show itself.

9. “Sincerely” - Violet Evergarden

An award winning show with a stunning soundtrack, Violet Evergarden is remarkably stirring and heartfelt. “Sincerely” marks her aesthetic journey toward the heart of what love means.

10. “Snow Fairy” - Fairy Tail

For all the countless Fairy Tail fans, this song had to be added onto the list. Fairy Tail is a vastly underrated show, and its many soundtracks (“Merry go Round”, “Holy Shine”) are even more underrated. Every Fairy Tail OST was tremendous in its own way, but as the premier OST, “Snow Fairy” takes the trophy.

11. “Deal with the Devil” - Kakegurui

Every playlist needs some jazz in it. “Deal with the Devil” adds a playful flourish to a piece that complements the frenziful yet genius gambling of Yumeko Jabami.

12. "Hikaru Nara" - Your Lie in April

Your Lie in April is an ode to music and melancholy humanity. “Hikaru Nara”, the first opening soundtrack, emerges like a lucid dream and is the most nostalgic song on this list for me.

Honorable Mention: “Giorno’s Theme” - JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure

Rounding off this list, it’s impossible to talk about “iconic” without mentioning “Giorno’s Theme”. With over 120 million views, this meme song has run rampant over social media and receives a place on the shelf of America’s anime history.

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