ANI-ON LIVE! Anime Expo 2014 Concert Report

Ani-on Live Anime Expo
Hullo everyone! Pointblanket here: long-time Anime Instrumentality lurker and first-time contributor. I’ll be sharing my impressions of the recent performance of up-and-coming anime rock cover band, Ani-On Live!, who played a series of shows during Anime Expo this year.

For those who are unfamiliar, this Boston-based group is led by the emphatic producer, Shota Nakama (of Video Game Orchestra), who also plays guitar and keyboard for the band. The other members normally include Maho Azuma and Luis Rivera on vocals, Masato Ito on lead guitar, Louis Ochoa on Bass, and Takuma Anzai on Drums. Ochoa and Takuma were unable to attend the shows out in Los Angeles. Instead, their parts were pre-recorded and mixed in as background accompaniment for each musical number. This tricky feat of coordination was made possible through the efforts of underground sound engineer and mixer Falk Au Yeong who is known for his contributions towards the original soundtracks for the Sonic: Before/After the Sequel fan games and his close collaboration with many of Shota’s projects.

But enough of introductions, and on with the show! When considering the limited nature of the Lounge21 venue at Anime Expo and the fact that blaring rock performances aren’t usually my type of show, Ani-On Live! put on a powerful yet fun performance whose energy was clearly reflected by the attending crowd. There was even a full line of fans performing “wotagei” throughout the evening to make the mood feel just right. [Read more…]

Doujin Album: LeetStreet Boys – L3g3nds – Review

Album Title: L3g3nds
Anime Title: N/A
Artist: LeetStreet Boys
Catalog Number: N/A
Release Type: Doujin
Release Date: January 25, 2013
Purchase at: iTunes

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Shirokuma Cafe ED Single – Grizzly-san no G★ROCK – Review

Album Title: Grizzly-san no G★ROCK
Anime Title: Polar Bear Cafe (Shirokuma Cafe)
Artist: Yuichi Nakamura
Catalog Number: AVCA-49747
Release Type: OP/ED Single
Release Date: July 18, 2012
Purchase at: CDJapan

[Read more…]

Cowboy Bebop: Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door OST- Future Blues – Review

Album Title: Cowboy Bebop: Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door OST Future Blues
Anime Title: Cowboy Bebop: Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door
Artist: Yoko Kanno, The Seatbelts, Mai Yamane, Steve Conte,
Hideyuki Takahashi, Hassan Bohmide, Aoi Tada, Mayu Jensen,
Tim Jensen, Mataro Misawa, Gabriela Robin
Catalog Number: VICL-60756
Release Type: Soundtrack
Release Date: August 29, 2001
Purchase at: CDJapan

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Composer of the Month – Yoko Kanno

Overview: Among the most prolific of anime composers, Yoko Kanno stands as one of the most loved and sought-after songwriters in the industry. Her works are particularly notable for covering a huge swath of genres; from the pumping synth-techno of Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex to the sweeping spiritual chanting of Earth Girl Arjuna, Kanno dabs her compositional brush into many styles. Arguably the most famous of her scores is that of the jazzy Cowboy Bebop, likely many peoples’ first encounter with Kanno and the soundtrack with which she is most frequently associated. In addition to her anime works, she’s composed music for commercials, live-action movies, and several video games. Lastly, she’s also an excellent J-pop composer, whose works have been performed by such high-profile artists as Maaya Sakamoto, Crystal Kay, Aki Okui, and more recently, May’n and Megumi Nakajima in the latest installment of the Macross franchise.

In case you’re here to only listen to the soundclips and not read any of the text, below is the master list of all the pieces featured in this profile entry in order. It’ll save time if you don’t want to have to click through each and every track.

Master List

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

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