Vocaloid IA visits the East Coast in Concert on October 11

All of the East Coast Vocaloid fans who weren’t able to see IA perform live in concert this past summer at Anime Expo can catch her in concert this October in New York City. The concert, billed as the IA SPECIAL 3D LIVE SHOWCASE will take place on October 11 at the Gramercy Theater located on 127 East 23rd St in New York City.

Given the arrangements by the organizers, viewers can be treated to many of IA’s Kagerou Project songs and see some pretty neat visual effects afforded by the 3D holographic projector.

For those interested, tickets are available for $35 if bought in advance, $45 if purchased the day of, and $75 for special VIP seats. Tickets can be purchased online at Ticketmaster.

On top of that, there will be a pre-show event at the Kinokuniya Bookstore in New York City located on 1073 Ave of Americas. The event will start at 6pm and ends at 7pm, giving all concertgoers time to get to the Gramercy Theater in time for the 8pm showing.

If you’d like to know what sort of songs you can expect out of the IA concert, check out the concert clips below, all taken from her performance at the Nokia Theater at Anime Expo 2015. More information about the event can be found on the IA website on 1st Place’s website, the company organizing this event.

Weekly Anime Music Releases – June 3

A short list of anime music including Fate/stay night [Unlimited Blade Works]’s ED Theme by Aimer. Kajiura fans should rejoice as well since another FictionJunction album will soon surface. So sit down and take a look at what came out on the week of June 3:

Anime OP/ED Singles

FateStayNight UBW

Fate/stay night [Unlimited Blade Works]

Album Name: Brave Shine
Artist: Aimer
Purchase at: CDJapan
Aimer’s music doesn’t inspire so much as impart mysterious vibes that can be utterly captivating in the way that only she can deliver upon them. And that’s what makes “Brave Shine” a very intriguing proposition. There’s an underlying tension that makes the ending theme to Fate/stay night [Unlimited Blade Works] so palatable that I definitely look forward to how the full single turns out.

My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU TOO OP

My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU TOO!

Album Name: Harumodoki
Artist: yanaginagi
Purchase at: CDJapan
And like clockwork, you have a release from the ear-pleasing yanaginagi, whose works performed since working for ryo of supercell have been mixed. With that said, her vocals remain pretty consistent in terms of their quality, but I’m not really having much hope for the composition or melody if it weren’t composed by the folks at ROUND TABLE. This one’s definitely a wait and see.
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Weekly Anime Music Releases – May 27

A long list of anime music including Nisekoi’s Rally Go Round by LiSA. Sit down and take a look at what came out on the week of May 27:

Anime OP/ED Singles

Nisekoi LISA

NISEKOI: -False Love-

Album Name: Rally Go Round
Artist: LiSA
Purchase at: CDJapan
I’ve never really hid my disdain for LiSA’s music since power pop was never my style and she seems to have the unfortunate tendency to get in my face without really transmitting anything too meaningful. Other artists like Nana Mizuki do a much better job, and if I wanted to listen to that type of music, I’d listen to her over LiSA

Houkago no Pleiades ED

Wish Upon the Pleiades

Album Name: Koko kara, Kanata kara
Artist: fragments
Purchase at: CDJapan
Given what you’ve seen out of the show, it’s not surprising to hear that “Koro Kara, Kanata Kara” is full of the sugary sweet seiyuu goodness. The song doesn’t go out of its way to inspire, but then again, it doesn’t really have to. The cuteness factor is what fans are going after anyway, and the song is pretty mellow and relaxing.
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Weekly Anime Music Releases – May 20

This week had a lot of insert songs from shows we really don’t care too much about. Given that it’s the tail end of the spring anime season (time sure flies, huh?), there’s not a whole lot left to go before the shows all close out. So aside from a few odds and ends, the only major release is Hiroyuki Sawano’s work on Owari no Seraph. Granted, the reaction will depend on what you think about Sawano. So here’s a look at what’s coming out this week:

Anime OP/ED Singles

Owari no Seraph OP-ED

Owari no Seraph

Album Name: X.U.
Artist: scaPEGoat / SawanoHiroyuki[nZk]
Purchase at: CDJapan
Well, when you have Hiroyuki Sawano in the composer’s chair for an opening or ending theme, you can safely expect some electronica moving rhythmically along followed by a loud outburst. True to form, that’s what you get from Owari no Seraph‘s OP theme. The most damning thing about it is how boring it is and I’d give it a pass. The ending theme is a bit better and it reminds you of Aldnoah.Zero‘s ending theme. But it’s still not all that good and I wouldn’t bother too much with this release, Sawano or no.

Houkago no Pleides OP

Wish Upon the Pleiades

Album Name: Stella-rium
Artist: Kano
Purchase at: CDJapan
The Houkago no Pleiades OP theme is probably the type of theme you would expect if you looked at the character designs and anime screenshots. Make no mistake: the song, Stella-rium, doesn’t deviate much from the energetic J-pop opener and pretty much stays the course through and through. That said, Kano’s vocals do sound cute even if this is a paint by the numbers J-pop song, so the worst you’d probably feel is unoffended.

Yamada-kun 7 Witches OP

Yamada-kun and the Seven Witches

Album Name: Kuchizuke Diamond
Artist: WEAVER
Purchase at: CDJapan
Well, the piano chords that open up the opening theme to Yamada-kun and the Seven Witches is pretty energetic, and WEAVER’s voice follows suit quite nicely. But it hardly stands out as something you’ve never heard before since it stays the course for the sort of boy band J-pop songs that have been released over the years. Again, nothing special, but nothing offensive either. Just a bit boring maybe.

Blood Blockade Battlefront ED

Blood Blockade Battlefront

Album Name: Sugar Song and Bitter Step
Purchase at: CDJapan
Having actually watched Blood Blockade Battlefront, I’d say the ending theme isn’t all too that impressive from the musical standpoint, but there’s no doubt that it’s pretty fun watching the visuals be paired along with this song as the characters strut about doing their stuff. You do need the context to get into it, but it’s not too bad all around. Nothing compared to the far better opening though.

Weekly Anime Music – May 13

It’s a depressing anime music release date when all you’re getting are a bunch of opening and ending singles with scarcely a soundtrack to get excited about. Worse yet, they all seem to be the same people or a group of seiyuu releasing the same thing over and over again. That doesn’t do much to stir my attention, but the fans get what they want, so that’s not a bad thing is it? So for this week’s releases, Kalafina might be the sole highlight, but there’s quite a few things for you all to chew upon this week:

Anime Openings and Ending Themes

Fate Stay Night ED Theme Kalafina

Fate/stay night [Unlimited Blade Works]

Album Name: ring your bell
Artist: Kalafina
Purchase at: CDJapan
Is there anything to be said about Kalafina that hasn’t been said before? I guess we could say that we’ve been treated to the same song and dance before and that we’ve heard pretty much the same thing over. Kalafina’s branding has been tied to these soaring vocals with a melancholy tilt and they’re hardly inspiring or enthralling. I’d say give this single a pass unless you’re a really hardcore fan.

Gunslinger Stratos Mirai

Gunslinger Stratos

Album Name: MIRAI
Artist: GARNiDELiA
Purchase at: CDJapan
Garnidelia, the group made up of singers Maria and producer toku continue to roll out singles left and right. What’s not certain is whether they’ve worn out their welcome, but signs point to them still releasing decent fare. The ED theme to Gunslinger Stratos is soft and pleasant, what with the backing piano and instruments. So for fans of Garnidelia, there’s nothing to fear here since this effort was pretty solid all around!

Le Eden de la Grisaia Opening Theme

Le Eden de la Grisaia

Album Name: Setsuna no Kajitsu
Artist: Maon Kurosaki
Purchase at: CDJapan
Ever since I heard Maon Kurosaki sing the music to Highschool of the Dead, I was definitely captivated by the energy she proffered and the way she navigate made me believe in her ability to deliver as a singer. So with those preconceptions in mind, hearing her efforts on Grisaia carries a sort of urgency that’s at odds with what’s on screen. But the biggest takeaway is that it’s very much a competent effort, even if it’s not eye-opening.
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Kantai Collection (KanColle) Music Reviews

KanColle Anime
For a series that should have been at least as good as Strike Witches, Kantai Collection, also known as KanColle, has severely underperformed in pretty much all but one aspect: the music. We’ve finally been able to review all of the aspects of KanColle‘s music and have been won over not only by the ending theme, but also completely floored by just how good the anime’s soundtrack is.

Granted, not everything was sunshine and rainbows. When we looked at KanColle‘s opening theme, Miiro, and saw that it was sung by the formidable AKINO of bless4, we braced ourselves for powerful power-pop that would have us enthralled by AKINO’s enthralling singing on top of a catchy melody. Unfortunately, that did not come to pass and it remains the weakest component of KanColle‘s music.

But when you looked at KanColle‘s ending theme, Fubuki, the song created a bit of confusion since Shiena Nishizawa’s energetic performance made it more suitable for an opening theme. Which is to say it was energetic, catchy, and emphatic! Definitely a solid debut for Nishizawa and we hope to see more of her performances since her delivery, while nothing jaw-dropping, is pretty competent.

But the anime’s crown jewel by far is none other than KanColle‘s soundtrack itself. Composed by Natsumi Kameoka, KanColle‘s soundtrack is thrilling, mixing in some of the most glorious orchestral pieces I’ve heard lately. It does everything right, from the wonderful character-centric themes, to pleasant depictions of the setting and of day to day life, to even battle music that packs quite a punch. It’s not necessarily the kind of fare you’d expect out of a show meant to please fans of a popular web game, but in hiring Natsumi Kameoka and having her compose the score, they really hit it out of the park. KanColle‘s soundtrack is a real treasure, one that commands your attention if you enjoy orchestral anime music at all.

Weekly Anime Music Releases – May 8

All the anime music releases seem to have been slowed down for this week. This Wednesday is also Constitution Day in Japan, so that’s probably why the releases have been moved over to Friday. In any case, it’s a smaller amount of releases and that certainly helps to make my workload a whole heck of a lot easier. So here’s the anime music you’re getting from this week:

Anime Openings and Ending Themes

Ore Monogatari OP

Ore Monogatari!!

Album Name: Miraikei Answer
Artist: Trustrick
Purchase at: CDJapan
The duo of Sayaka Kanda and Billy are back again. After releasing “Flying Fafnir” for Juuou Mujin no Fafnir‘s OP, they’ve gone ahead and released this latest single with the opening theme to Ore Monogatari!!. The song isn’t much to speak of since it’s pretty much standard J-pop, but the show is cute and worth checking out if you’re a fan of cheesy romances.

Nyaruko-san OVA

Haiyore! Nyaruko-san F

Album Name: Haiyore Once Nyagain
Artist: Kitto Engage
Purchase at: CDJapan
Call them whatever you want, but I’ll always find the opening songs by the Haiyore! Nyaruko-san seiyuu to be absolutely hilarious. Their modus operandi always seems to be creating raucous singing that’s fun with the memetic repetition that you don’t mind that it’s not, by all accounts great music. But since we’re dealing with anime music, we should be thankful that we don’t need to take this medium toooooo seriously.

Anime Soundtracks and Albums

Nyaruko-san Mini Album

Haiyore! Nyaruko-san

Album Name: Haiyore! Nyaruko-san Best Selection Mini Album Jasenkyokutachi
Artist: Kana Asumi, Miyu Matsuki, Yuka Otsubo, Ryoka Yuzuki, Eri Kitamura, Wataru Hatano, Rie Kugimiya, Mariko Kouda, Aya Hisakawa
Purchase at: CDJapan
And if the above album doesn’t do enough to satiate your love for Haiyore! Nyaruko-san, then this album certainly will. After all, it contains most of the music from the previous anime seasons, starting off with the infamous “UUUUU! NYAN! Let’s NYAN!” theme that everyone loves so much. Shrill singing it may be, but once again, fun wins the day!

Death Parade Music Reviews

Death Parade
Death Parade is an anime about people who have died and are sent to the sinister Quindecim bar. There, they must play a game ranging from darts to billiards where, in the course of playing, they will be judged by the barkeep, a solemn man named Decim so that their eventual fates are revealed. Although the anime ended less than a month ago, if there’s anything that separates Death Parade from all the other shows, it’s that music is excellent.

Recently, we got a chance to review some of the music. We listened to Death Parade‘s opening theme, “Flyers” by a band called Bradio and we came out of it very impressed. The music has a rock quality to it that’s exciting and the dance rhythm they throw around is absolutely thrilling. When you tie that in with the dancing in the visuals that play during the opening, it makes for a fun atmosphere that’s certainly different from the kind of atmosphere you’d expect out of Death Parade.

Rather, when you check out the Death Parade soundtrack, that’s when the music becomes much more appropriate. Here, the music can be a lot more somber, especially with that delicious piano track at the very end titled “Moonlit Night”. The other tracks range from quieter, more introspective piano music to wild chaotic affairs that really hit the jazzy vibes really nicely. Composer Yuki Hayashi demonstrates a great amount of range in his music and you come out of the soundtrack experience feeling pretty gratified with what he comes up with.

In the end, Death Parade’s music is an overall positive experience, one that takes in a diverse range of themes and melodies to return a wonderful listen. While the opening theme might be the star of the show, it’s the soundtrack, with its weighted emotions, that leaves you with the memories that the show carries around all the way to the end.

Weekly Anime Music Releases – April 29

A torrent of anime music awaits us at the end of April and boy are there a lot of singles to really digest and ponder over. Not so much on the soundtrack side though where you get a small dose of Bahamut, but it’s still something to consider since Yoshihiro Ike isn’t much of a slouch. Here’s a look at what’s coming out this week:

Anime Openings and Ending Themes

The Disappearance of Nagato Yuki-Chan OP

The Disappearance of Nagato Yuki-Chan

Album Name: Fure Fure Mirai
Artist: Kitakou Bungeibu Joshikai
Purchase at: CDJapan
The first of the albums that we’re looking at comes from the well-worn Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya franchise featuring probably the best girl in the series, especially if you saw the movie. In terms of this single though, you’ll get to hear Minori Chihara and many of the side characters from the Haruhi franchise take it away. If you’ve liked their previous stuff, this disc becomes a no-brainer. Besides, it’s a lot of fun!

Kin-iro Mosaic 2 OP-ED


Album Name: Yumeiro Parade/My Best Friends
Artist: Rhodanthe*
Purchase at: CDJapan
So Rhodanthe* is really a group made up of voice actresses Asuka Nishi, Manami Tanaka, Risa Taneda, Yumi Uchiyama, and Nao Toyama and they’ve also performed the opening theme to the first season of the show. With cutesy vocals, a giant ska opening, and happy bouncy lyrics, this set captures the lives of young girls effectively and I can see people actually being drawn to this single. It’s certainly a lot better than many of the other seiyuu stuff out there.
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Weekly Anime Music Releases – April 22

And as if to put the past couple weeks to shame, the barrage of new anime music releases begins. Here’s a look at what’s coming out this week:

Anime Openings and Ending Themes


Sound! Euphonium

Artist: TRUE
Purchase at: CDJapan
It’s interesting to hear the differences between the lackadaisical atmosphere of the show and compare it to the much more dynamic opening theme for Sound! Euphonium. I mean, the song isn’t really anything special since TRUE delivers a by-the-numbers J-pop song, but at least there’s some energy to be had whereas the show’s main character seems listless, lacking for an energy that would make this anime more captivating.

Blood Blockade Battlefront OP

Blood Blockade Battlefront

Album Name: Hello, world!/Colony
Purchase at: CDJapan
Although this anime season’s opening themes aren’t much to speak of, you really can’t go wrong with Blood Blockade Battlefront‘s opening theme by Bump of Chicken. Strange band name aside, they’ve done a lot of good works where the rock isn’t so harsh and grating. If you’re a fan of the softer side of rock, I’d recommend giving this group and, by extension, this single a listen.

Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha ViVid OP

Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha ViVid

Album Name: Angel Blossom
Artist: Nana Mizuki
Purchase at: CDJapan
This might just be the nostalgia fan in me talking, but I’ve always enjoyed the work that Nana Mizuki has put into the Nanoha series. They might not necessarily be her most stellar work, but I could at least call it pretty competent. And I’m hoping for more of the same here.
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