Just like last year, it was incredibly hard to narrow down the best anime opening and ending songs of the year. This time around, we wanted to include a broader spectrum in terms of genre, while of course selecting only the best of the best. We opted to go for an unordered list, so the songs are listed in no particular order. Check ’em out!

Sword Art Online: Alicization

LiSA keeps nailing those high-energy songs and on the receiving end, the fans can’t get enough of them! She dazzles us one again in this symphonic rock song!

Akai Wana (who loves it?) / ADAMAS
Buy at CDJapan
Tokyo Ghoul:re 2nd Season
katharsis by TK from ling tosite sigure
TK from 凛として時雨 『katharsis』 / “東京喰種トーキョーグール:re” 最終章OP

TK’s crazy guitar riffs along with his high vocals are one-of-a-kind. The song katharsis is way too intense to be cut down into a short 90-second sequence for an anime, so if you have only heard this song while watching Tokyo Ghoul, now is the time to listen to the whole piece!

Buy at CDJapan
Banana Fish
found & lost by Survive Said The Prophet
Survive Said The Prophet - found & lost | Official Music Video

The powerful song found & lost really put Survive Said The Prophet on the radar of anime fans. While vocalist Yosh already had involvement in participating in anisong, this year is the first time we see him and the band create music for anime, and let me tell you, they’ve made a damn good first impression!

If you want to know more on how vocalist Yosh started getting into anisong, read our interview with Yosh where he tells his story on how he began working with Sawano Hiroyuki and ended up being featured in big anime titles such as Attack on Titan.

found & lost
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Goblin Slayer
Rightfully by Mili
Mili - Rightfully / Goblin Slayer OP/Opening [Full] (Official Music Video)

Mili shows how haunting their music can be in this contemporary classic song. It discharges an unease and fantasy feeling which is hard to describe with only words, so have a listen for yourself!

Buy at CDJapan
Hakyuu Houshin Engi
Keep the Heat and Fire Yourself Up by Fear, and Loathing in Las Vegas
Fear, and Loathing in Las Vegas - Keep the Heat and Fire Yourself Up

The extreme five-man band punches it up a notch and goes crazy in their music video! If you’re looking for adrenaline, you’ve found it!

Buy at CDJapan
Fate/Extra Last Encore
Bright Burning Shout by Takanori Nishikawa (T.M.Revolution)
Takanori Nishikawa - Bright Burning Shout

Even after creating anisong for so many years, we still can’t get enough of Takanori‘s energetic and catchy songs. Just like the title of the track indicates, Bright Burning Shout is a song that screams with determination, an attribute that we come to love from shounen anisong.

Bright Burning Shout
Buy at CDJapan
Attack on Titan 3
Red Swan by Yoshiki feat. HYDE
"Red Swan" (Attack on Titan anime theme) - 進撃の巨人 Official Lyric Video YOSHIKI feat. HYDE

Yoshiki surprised the world when Red Swan was announced, and as a result, this created a massive hype. In retrospective, the hype was definitely justified as Red Swan elegantly reminded us what a mastermind Yoshiki is when it comes to creating ballads.

If you interested in knowing how Yoshiki first started playing the piano, head over to our interview which we conducted a while ago.

Red Swan
Buy at CDJapan
Golden Kamuy
【THE SIXTH LIE】Hibana(MVショートver.) *TVアニメ『ゴールデンカムイ』EDテーマ

THE SIXTH LIE is a hard-working band and finally made its anisong debut. While still keeping their typical mysterious sound, the band showed us their most pleasant and catchy song to date!

Back when THE SIXTH LIE performed in London, we asked them what kind of anime they would like to compose for, as well as their future plans. If you’re interested in this and more, definitely read the interview we conducted with the band.

Buy at CDJapan
Tokyo Ghoul:re
asphyxia by Cö shu Nie
Cö shu Nie - Asphyxia

asphyxia offers beautiful piano and vocals, combined with expressive bass and drums. The intense and wicked sound created is befitting as a successor to the previous opening song for Tokyo Ghoul, the extremely popular song unravel by TK from ling tosite sigure.

Buy at CDJapan
Souten no Ken: Regenesis 2
Soul Seeker by Crossfaith

Get your blood rushing with our heaviest pick on the list, Soul Seeker! Enough said!

Soul Seeker
Buy at iTunes
Overlord II
MYTH & ROID 『HYDRA』 Music Clip フル ver.

Emotionally passionate and powerful, the traits of HYDRA, a masterpiece in a class of its own!

Truthfully speaking, we wanted to include every opening and ending song from Overlord II, and Overlord III from this year, however, since they’re all created by the same composer, we decided to be fair and ultimately stuck with HYDRA as our main pick. VORACITYGO CRY GO, and Silent Solitude are the other songs featured in the Overlord series.

Buy at CDJapan
Resolve by Azusa Tadokoro
田所あずさ / 7th Single - RESOLVE - Music Video

From being a voice actress to making music, Azusa Tadokoro shows her splendid singing abilities in this aggressive and fast-paced song. We look forward to seeing more from Azusa Tadokoro as she recently declared a restart in her musical career.

Buy at CDJapan
Koi wa Ameagari no You ni
Ref:rain by Aimer

Ref:rain is warm, romantic, soothing, and gentle. Coupling it with Aimer’s husky voice, it truly transcends to become something only Aimer is able to offer.

Ref:rain / Mabayui Bakari
Buy at CDJapan
Yowamushi Pedal: Glory Line
Dancing by Yusuke Saeki
佐伯ユウスケ『ダンシング』MV / 「弱虫ペダル GLORY LINE」OPテーマ

As you could probably guess from a song name like Dancing, it is a very lively song, but also comedic with lots of character. It goes from rapping to chanting like a Buddhist monk, and later even cussing. It’s also a remarkably catchy song too.

Buy at CDJapan
Gyakuten Saiban: Sono “Shinjitsu”, Igi Ari! 2
Starting Blue by halca

If you’re into the high-spirited type of songs, this one is for you! The gentle and sweet voice of halca is a perfect match for such cheerful and lighthearted song.

Unfortunately, the music video for Starting Blue can only be viewed in Japan. To those who are located in Japan, click here to watch the official music video.

Starting Blue
Buy at CDJapan
Asayake to Nettaigyo by Boku no Lyric no Boyomi
ぼくのりりっくのぼうよみ - 「朝焼けと熱帯魚」ミュージックビデオ

Calm your mind with the relaxing song Asayake to Nettaigyo, quite similar to the effect you get from lofi hip-hop that kids are into these days.

Fruits Decaying
Buy at CDJapan
Banana Fish
Prayer X by King Gnu
King Gnu - Prayer X

At first glance, Prayer X might look depressing—and it is. But somehow, this song is capable to resonate with lots of people, perhaps you’re one of them? It is probably best expressed with the words that one of the commenters left on YouTube, “this is so terrifyingly beautiful”.

Prayer X
Buy at CDJapan
Grancrest Senki
Rin by ASCA
ASCA 『凛』- Rin - Music Video (Theme song for "Record of Grancrest War" グランクレスト戦記)

With energy similar to LiSA, ASCA shows what she is made of in this catchy and powerful song, Rin.

Buy at CDJapan
Quiz Tokiko-san
Carry on living by BAND-MAID

BAND-MAID really nailed it when they named their album WORLD DOMINATION, as they’ve ranking high on our yearly top list, touring the world, and now even entering the anime scene with the rocking song Carry on living.

World Domination
Buy at CDJapan
Fate/Extra: Last Encore
Tsuki to Hanataba by Sayuri
SAYURI - Moon & Bouquet (Music Video First Verse Version)

Sayuri is also one of the unique artists you will find in the anime scene, her distinct low-spirited yet empowering voice, joined with her signature yellow acoustic guitar makes a perfect match. We can probably also call her quite unique in the visual department too because if you didn’t notice yet, she’s wearing a poncho, not only in this music video but in all of them. If you curious to know why check out our interview with Sayuri from earlier this year.

Tsuki to Hanataba
Buy at CDJapan
Bonus Song
Seishun Buta Yarou wa Bunny Girl Senpai no Yume wo Minai
Fukashigi no Karte by Various artists
[不可思議のカルテ] Fukashigi no Carte FULL VER. Lyrics

As for our bonus song, we picked a quite interesting one which features several voice actors. The song itself can so far be found in six versions, five versions where each voice actor is in center focus and another one where all the voice actresses take turns singing. Which one of them is the best? We will let you decide.

The official upload for the individual songs are unfortunately only available in Japan, but if you are located in Japan, click the links below to view each solo version.

Fukashigi no Karte
Buy at CDJapan

We hope you enjoyed our picks and come back for more next year!

Other top lists: