Anime Soundtrack Review: Naruto Greatest Hits!!!!!

Naruto Greatest Hits!!!!! is a 15 track CD that includes four opening themes for Naruto Shippuden, eight ending themes for Naruto Shippuden, the ending theme for Naruto Shippuden the Movie: The Lost Tower, the ending theme for A Chunin Exam of Flames! Naruto vs. Konohamaru OVA, and the ending theme for Naruto Shippuden the Movie: Blood Prison. It was interesting to note that unlike the previous soundtrack CDs, this one does not put the movie and OVA themes where they go chronologically where they should go with the openings and endings; instead, they are put on at the end of the CD. This decision may have been made because if the OVA ending theme went where it was supposed to be, there would have been two songs by the same artist back-to-back.

Naruto Greatest Hits!!!!!
Publisher: Sony Music Entertainment Japan
Release Date: July 18, 2012

The disc opens with “Formerly Transparent World” by Motohiro Hata, which is the seventh opening theme for Naruto Shippuden. It’s an upbeat track, and it’s also a memorable theme from the series. While I know this opens the disc due to where it falls chronologically, it’s great to hear this song opening this disc, because it works well as an opening track. This is one of my favorite themes that’s included on this disc.

Next is “Bicycle” by Ore Ska Band, and it’s the 13th ending theme for the series. It’s an upbeat track, and it’s one of the more memorable ones due to being both catchy and being featured in one of the omake. The only drawback to this song is the fact that the lyrics are very repetitive, especially in the chorus; the chorus is basically made up of the Japanese words for “bicycle” and “pedaling” being repeated. While that quirk with the lyrics is a little bothersome, I still enjoy the song musically. Hearing a Japanese act doing ska music is actually kind of cool.

This is followed by “Transient Fireworks” by Supercell, and it’s the 14th ending theme for Naruto Shippuden. It’s a ballad, and it’s one of my favorite ballad ending themes that I’ve heard for the series. I love how this song builds musically, and the singer has a great voice.

Next is “Diver” by NICO Touches the Walls, and it’s the eighth opening theme for the series. It’s an upbeat track and is another memorable opening theme for Naruto Shippuden. And unlike their previous theme for the series, “Broken Youth,” this one is memorable to me right when it starts.

“U’ Can Do It” by Domino is the 15th ending theme for Naruto Shippuden, and it’s another upbeat and catchy track. However, instead of the more rock-oriented songs or the slow ballads that tend to be associated with the themes for this series, this one is more of a dance/pop track. This different sound already makes it stand out, but it’s also one of the few themes that incorporates some English into its lyrics. This is one of the ending themes for the series that I really enjoy.

This is followed by “Midnight Orchestra” by Aqua Timez, and it’s the 16th ending theme for the series. This one is more of mid-tempo track, and admittedly, it’s not a song that necessarily grabs the listener right away. But after hearing it several times, it becomes more memorable. It’s a good theme, but it doesn’t rank as high on my favorites list as some of the other songs that appear on this disc.

Next is “Lovers” by 70ops, and it’s the ninth opening theme for Naruto Shippuden. It’s an upbeat and catchy track, and follows in the more rock-oriented sound that a lot of the opening themes tend to have. I have to give some serious props to both the singer and the musicians on this song, because the singer sounds great and the music is incredible. Not only that, but the vocals and music mesh well together. This is another track that I really enjoy listening to on this CD.

“Freedom” by HOME MADE Kazoku is the 17th ending theme for the series. It’s another upbeat and catchy song; while it has a rock backing track, the vocals are definitely a combination of singing and rapping. This band also performed the theme for Naruto Shippuden the Movie: Bonds, and I have to say that I think this song is much stronger than “No Rain No Rainbow” was. I really enjoy this song, and it’s another one that I really enjoy listening to on this disc.

This is followed by “Shout Out Your Desires!!” by Okamoto’s, and it’s the 18th ending theme for Naruto Shippuden. It’s another upbeat rock track, but musically, this sounds like something an alternative rock band in Western music would do than the other rock-sounding themes have sounded up to this point. It’s a refreshing change musically, and this definitely makes the song memorable.

Next is “Newsong” by Tacica, and it’s the 10th opening theme for the series. It’s more of a mid-tempo track than is usually associated with the series’ opening themes, but that helps it to stand out. In some respects, it makes me think of at least one of the themes that I heard for the Haikyu!! anime series that I liked.

“Place To Try” by TOTALFAT is the 19th ending theme for Naruto Shippuden. It’s an upbeat track, but I have to admit that it’s not as catchy as the other upbeat themes on this disc have been. I also have to admit that when I listen to this, I don’t recognize it at first until I reach the chorus. So for me, this isn’t one of the more memorable theme songs that appears on this disc.

Next is “By My Side” by HEMENWAY, and it’s the 20th ending theme for the series. It’s another upbeat rock track, but it’s one I recognize as soon as I hear it. It’s a very catchy song, and it’s another one that musically kind of makes me think of one of the Haikyu!! theme songs. This is another song that I really enjoy listening to on this CD.

“If” by Kana Nishino was used as the ending theme for Naruto Shippuden the Movie: The Lost Tower. This is a midtempo pop song rather than a rock track, but it’s a very memorable and catchy song. As soon as I hear it, I recognize it. Nishino’s vocal performance works very well for this song and she’s got a good voice. This is another song that I really like listening to on this disc.

This is followed by “Future Eve” by Okamoto’s, which was used as the ending theme for the A Chunin Exam of Flames! Naruto vs. Konohamaru OVA. Like their earlier song, “Shout Out Your Desires!!,” it’s another alternative rock leaning song. It’s also a catchy song once the lyrics kick in, and in some respects, I think this song is a little stronger than “Shout Out Your Desires!!” is; not that Okamoto’s other song is bad, but this one has more of a pop hook that’s easier for listeners to enjoy listening to.

The final track on the disc is “Roar” by U-suke, which was used as the ending theme for Naruto Shippuden the Movie: Blood Prison. Musically, this song almost sounds like it has some Latin music influence on it. It’s a mid-to-uptempo piece that is definitely memorable due to how different it sounds compared to many of the other themes that have been used for the anime series and the films. Even though it may be a noticeably different music style, it still works. It’s also a catchy song, and it’s a track that I enjoy listening to.

Overall, this is a pretty good collection of theme songs for Naruto Shippuden. It’s a rather solid collection from beginning to end, and there’s only one song on here that I thought was a little weaker than the others.

If you’re wanting to collect the various opening and ending themes for the Naruto franchise, then I would highly recommend acquiring this CD, along with Naruto Best Hit Collection, Naruto Best Hit Collection 2, Naruto Super Hits 2006-2008, and Best Hit Naruto. The best way to acquire these discs is to look around at sites that sell Japanese import CDs and trying to find the best deal.

I wrote this review after listening to a copy of Naruto Greatest Hits!!!!! that my husband purchased for me as a Christmas gift.

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