First Listen: The music of My Hero Academia 5<span class="wtr-time-wrap block after-title"><span class="wtr-time-number">6</span> min read</span>

There is no surprise when it comes to My Hero Academia openings and endings. They all follow this ‘new-age high quality’ shounen mentality. There was the Bleach sound, there was the Naruto sound, there was the Fairy Tail sound and now there’s the My Hero Academia sound.

I wasn’t really looking forward to the new tie-ups. I didn’t spend much time -honestly, I didn’t spend any time- thinking about the newest season’s music either. That doesn’t mean that I dislike the OPs and EDs; they are just My Hero Academia openings and endings. That’s not a bad thing but it’s not a great thing either. They are repetitive and monotonous. If I were to be brutal, I’d say that the only thing that changed in the latest season’s tie-ups was the artists’ names but that would be a bit too much.

Short disclaimer: my nagging session above doesn’t mean that I dislike the show. Stop judging me silently.

The Opening Theme. Old story, new song. “No.1” by DISH//

“No.1” by DISH//

I’m afraid that I don’t have much to say about the newest opening. DISH// created the oh-so-familiar to us MHA sound and they did so beautifully. There was nothing terribly new or exciting about “No.1”. The fans have been tempered to have certain expectations and DISH delivered.

DISH band
Pop/rock band and dance group, DISH// (source)

As I find the selection of artists more interesting than the songs themselves, I have found a pattern. Both DISH, as well as KANA-BOON have been featured in Naruto, Gintama and My Hero Academia. By that reasoning, it’s likely that we’ll see a band that’s been featured in either of these anime, be featured in MHA as well. Am I on to something or what? That’s why I spent some time looking for any other connections between artists that have been featured in Naruto and Gintama but not in MHA. That leaves us with quite a few artists. Would I be right to predict or assume that Snowkel will be featured in one of the next seasons of My Hero Academia? Should we look forward to their version of an MHA opening? Could it be a logical assumption or am I inadvertently misleading you? No clue. This is just my theory. Perhaps I’ll spend some time on it and write an article explaining it. Eh, we’ll see.

OST first impressions. by Hayashi Yuuki

The concept behind the soundtrack was straightforward from the first season and that concept didn’t change in the slightest for all seasons that came after it. We have this generally western approach that is heavily influenced by American animation. Well, duh, anime was inspired by Disney and American animation to begin with, but My Hero Academia kinda brings us back to the roots. It’s a no brainer. Western animation is mainly focused on fairy-tale characteristics that cater to young little girls. Obviously, there are the more… unisex Disney and Pixar films but for now, let’s focus on animated films like Frozen. The soundtrack, the songs cater to young ladies. Right? My Hero Academia caters to young men in Midoriya’s age group. What Hayashi Yuuki managed to do is create a heterogeneous sound that caters to that audience. Super heroes are an American thing. Check. The target audience is middle school boys. Check. The target audience is both domestic and foreign. Check. The production has a good budget. Check. All that can be easily understood by listening to just a couple of tracks from the soundtrack.

Hayashi Yuuki sitting, dark clothes, white background, relaxed posture
Composer, arranger Hayashi Yuuki (source)

Undeniably, the soundtrack is good both in terms of production value and in terms of emotional impact. It is heterogeneous, meaning that it features a broad range of genres while still having a general and kinda broad guide. The sound is crisp, interesting and the tracks are useful. I find some tracks memorable but not all, which isn’t a negative comment about the soundtrack; I just didn’t notice everything while watching the show. Honestly, my mind was paying attention to the action and the characters. The music is there to emphasize all that. And before you get the chance to disagree with me: Yes, there are scenes where the music has the spotlight. The scene where Midoriya rescued (or fought along) Eri-chan is one of them.

Personally, I wouldn’t choose to listen to the entire soundtrack unless I was really in the mood for super hero stuff -which isn’t something usual for me-, be in the mood specifically for My Hero Academia -which isn’t something usual for me either- or be in the mood to listen to a good soundtrack that didn’t really catch my attention while watching the show -which definitely isn’t something usual for me-. But if you’re not me, which is a good thong for you, and you’re a die-hard fan of Midoriya or Bakugo (btw, I wanna know his hero name; I’m sure it’s gonna be something aggressive), I bet you’ll enjoy listening to the OST on its own.

The Ending Theme. Laid back slice of life. “Ashiato” by the peggies

“Ashiato” by the peggies

the peggies have been around for longer than you may think. This year, it’s their tenth year anniversary and what better way to celebrate than being featured in the most popular shounen anime as the ending theme artist.

Their latest release (as of now) is “センチメートル [Centimeter]”, a single that was tied-up with TV anime Kanojo, Okarishimasu. I enjoyed listening to it a lot and I still do. I’m positively biased when alternative rock becomes a topic of discussion and the peggies are no exception.

the peggies
Rock band the peggies (source)

Obviously, I’m not in love with all of their songs as some are not as good as others. I did not find MHA 5 ED all that amazing, although it’s spot on and it’s probably gonna become an ear-worm for many of us. It’s a quality production and it does the anime justice but I wouldn’t prefer it over some of their other songs. That being said, it’s a nice track nonetheless and it has this slice of life vibe that suits the artist really well. Still, though, that wouldn’t be enough for me to make it my favourite MHA ending or my favourite the peggies song. However, if you’re a die-hard fan of the peggies or a die-hard My Hero Academia fan and you really like the generic MHA sound, then surely this would be your cup of tea.

TL;DR

  • Good quality but not amazing songs
  • The same My Hero Academia sound we’ve come to expect
  • Diverse and useful soundtrack

Leave a Reply