Why hello, metalheads. It’s a lovely evening to list some classics. Considering the lockdown, we haven’t had the chance to lose ourselves in the chaotic whiplash of heavy metal (at least not outside of our bedrooms), so why not add some hits to the playlist? Dance party in 3…2…1.
Let It End by SiM – Rage of Bahamut: Virgin Soul OP 1
To this day I have never skipped this opening. I couldn’t. It would feel offensive. The timed shots, the art style, the key change, the switch from radio voice to hard guitar. It’s almost impossible to sit still for the first half of this. Though I wasn’t a sucker for the second half, that hike from song to scream near the end is ridiculously good. If you watched ep 1 and thought, “Oh boy, what a nice anime. Bet there won’t be a heavy metal opening!” then think again, I guess.
One Reason by Fade – Deadman Wonderland OP 1
This was probably my first introduction to heavy rock in anime. I was not prepared for this at all. At age fourteen I was whipping around my bedroom to all sorts of songs but this one took the cake for the honorable Please Don’t Break Anything award. The show is dark—you would think the plot would work as a clue to how grungy the OP is—but if anime has ever taught us anything, it would be: no, the show and OP will not match 100% of the time. Just take a look at Death Parade. In this case, though, I’m glad it did.
EXISTENCE by SiM – Rage of Bahamut: Genesis OP
I’m sorry but if you’re not jumping around to the intro then we need to talk. Rage of Bahamut really knows how to rile up the audience. I never predict their openings and the first is always hard like this. Technically, there are no rules to this list so I feel no shame in listing the same series (though different seasons) twice. SiM deserves the best.
Deal With by OLDCODEX – Servamp OP
Admittedly, I’ve never seen the show. I’ve seen clips of it—most of which I laughed at so I did not this coming at all. This is one of those songs you run across in a playlist of hard rock OPs and just add it cause, yes, it’s good. I heard it once and ever since Servamp is one of the main names I drop for anime with a great rock OP. And fun fact: it’s sung by Tatsuhisa Suzuki (or Makoto Tachibana from Free!!). Turns out he’s passionate about more than just the pool.
Feed the Fire by Coldrain – King’s Game OP
Believe it or not, I was extremely late to the game on this one. The entire Fateless album is a gift but “Feed the Fire” is definitely up there. It’s almost torturous to imagine how good this would be at a concert purely for the chorus. It’s not as frantic as Maximum the Hormone, but hey, it does the trick. P.S. Check out Envy on the album! It’s pretty good too.
Respect for the Dead Man by Pay Money to My Pain – Nobunagun OP
It would not be a lie to say that I was obsessed with this one. If I’d discovered this as a kid there would be nothing upright by the end of it. Imagining a crowd thrashing back and forth at the two-minute mark is easy money—it’s infectious. For songs with grit, it sits pretty high on my list of absolutes. I almost wish they’d used a different part for the actual OP, but honestly, that’s just me being greedy.
Honorable Mention: What’s Up, People?! by Maximum the Hormone – Death Note OP 2
“Lauren, did you forget the point of this article?” Nope! I did not! I just had a feeling you would like the second Death Note OP. You were gonna listen to it anyway. Might as well do it here.
Lauren is a 23-year-old cosplayer and writer from Chicago. Her favorite shows include Wolf’s Rain, Terror in Resonance, and Samurai Champloo. If you can’t reach her for whatever reason, she’s probably reading or figuring out how to turn her kendo skills into functional ones. She’ll be back in a minute.