As the popularity of Japanese animation begins to build even more abroad, the popularity of Japanese music does as well. International audiences have been familiar with Japanese anime for a long time with titles such as Sailor Moon, Speedracer, Dragon Ball Z, etc dominating our children’s networks. As streaming services such as Crunchyroll, Funimation, Netflix, and more make anime more accessible to us, the more open to Japanese music we are. The curiosity in opening ourselves up to more can be daunting, however, who would you consider to be dominating the openers we love?
At The Honey Pop, we want to introduce you to LiSA, who is deemed the queen of anime themes to anime fans around the world. Even if you’re not an anime fan, LiSA is an artist you don’t want to miss out on.
LiSA, born as Oribe Risa, is a Japanese singer, songwriter, and lyricist from Seki, Gifu, and is currently signed to a subsidiary label of Sony Music Artists called Sacra Music. Her stage name, LiSA is an acronym for Love is Same All. She started her music career at the age of 18 when she was the main vocalist in an indie rock band called Chucky. After their disbandment in 2008, LiSA moved to Tokyo to pursue her solo career. In 2010, she made her solo debut when she sang songs for the anime television series Angel Beats! During her time, while singing for the television series, she was a part of a fictional band for the series called Girls Dead Monsters. After this, LiSA’s popularity began to rise quickly in Japan.
LiSA had her solo debut mini-album released in 2011 and was called Letters To U by Aniplex under Sony Music Artists. Her success with her music in Angel Beats! opened up plenty of doors for her. Shortly after her solo debut, LiSA released ‘Oath Sign’ which was used for the 2011 anime television series Fate/Zero. After the immense success that ‘Oath Sign’ brought LiSA, her songs were continuously used as either openers or closers for anime shows.
QUEEN OF ANIME
LiSA’s title as the queen of anime themes is not self-proclaimed, but one that was bestowed upon her by anime fans around the world. Following ‘Oath Sign’, LiSA performed the first opening for the anime television series Sword Art Online with ‘Crossing Field’ in 2012. As for anime openers, her songs were used in anime television series The Irregular at Magic High School, Nisekoi, Qualidea Code, Fate/Apocrypha, and most recently, Demon Slayer: Kimetsu No Yaiba. Her song ‘Gurenge’ which is the opening for Demon Slayer: Kimetsu No Yaiba is a well-known song on the famous app TikTok.
As for anime closers, her songs were used in these anime television series: Sword Art Online II, Sword Art Online: Alicization, Demon Slayer: Kimetsu No Yaiba, and My Hero Academia. Her songs were used in the films and video games for Sword Art Online as well as the video game Dengeki Bunko: Fighting Climax Ignition and the ending of the film Mobile Suit Gundam Narrative.
Outside of her amazing track record as an artist who has dedicated most of her songs to bringing animation to life, LiSA is an amazing artist. Her songs have never failed to peak in the top 10 of the Oricon weekly charts in Japan. LiSA manages to challenge herself by not letting her vocals fit into a specific genre, and dabbles in a bit of everything to prove her artistry. On October 14th, LiSA will release her fifth studio album, Leo-Nine, alongside the single titled ‘Homura’ which will be used as the theme song for the upcoming anime movie Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba the Movie: Mugen Train.
Although LiSA mainly focuses on the market within Japan, we hope that one day she can tour. Here at TheHoneyPop, we’re just waiting for the day to see a solo concert from her.
Recently, LiSA released a new song called ‘Love Lock (愛錠)’ for the Japanese drama series Thirteen, which is a remake of the BBC show of the same title. Check it out below!
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Featured Image Source: LiSA for Candy Stripper via LiSA Twitter