Anime Soundtrack Review: Yowamushi Pedal O.S.T. 1

Yowamushi Pedal O.S.T 1 is a 32-track CD that contains background instrumental score from the Yowamushi Pedal anime series. The score was composed by Kan Sawada.

Yowamushi Pedal O.S.T. 1
Publisher: Toho Co., Ltd.
Release Date: September 17, 2014

The first track on the disc is “Sakamichi,” and it’s an instantly recognizable piece of music from the anime. The title “Sakamichi” is fitting, because this is definitely Sakamichi’s theme music. It’s an upbeat track, and it fits with Sakamichi’s personality. This is a piece that’s usually heard after Sakamichi has something good happen to him in a race. The next track is “Sohoku High School Bicycling Club,” and it’s a variation on “Sakamichi.” It has a similar sound but it is slower in tempo.

This is followed by “Morning Practice,” which is a piece that’s always heard in the background if the club members are doing something in the morning, such as practicing in the morning or getting going for the day. I love the emphasis on the piano in the track, but then other instruments are added as the piece progresses. Next is “Foundation,” which seems to be a variation on “Morning Practice.” This piece has a similar structure, except the arrangement is not as “airy” as “Morning Practice.”

The next track on the disc is “Love For Bicycles,” which has an emphasis on acoustic guitar and piano instead of the orchestral sound of the previous four tracks. After this is “Cycle Shop Kanzaki,” which is a very upbeat piece that focuses on brass instruments and piano. It’s a recognizable piece of music and is usually associated either with the bicycle shop or with Miki Kanzaki.

This is followed by “Akiba!,” which is the music you hear when Sakamichi goes to Akihabara, or when he’s thinking about going there. It’s another recognizable piece of the score, and to me, it almost feels as if it was inspired by Latin or salsa or something along those lines. The mixture of the electronics and strings is also nice here. Next is “Your Anime Club,” which almost sounds like a more downbeat and minimal version of “Akiba!”

“Resurrecting The Anime Club!” has a very electronic sound to it, and it’s not an instantly recognizable piece to me. My guess is that it only appeared in the early episodes of the series before Sakamichi joined Sohoku’s Bicycle Racing Club. It’s a nice piece, though. This is followed by “Battle Of The School Store,” which is a very upbeat piece that utilizes guitar, piano and percussion, along with some electronic instruments. I know I’ve heard this a few times in the series because I recognize it. I think it usually shows up when Naruko and Imaizumi are competing with each other.

The next track on this disc is “Car Sickness,” and it has a strong focus on electronic instruments. It almost makes me think of some of electronic music that came out in the West in the 1970’s. “Tadokoro’s Special Burger” is a more orchestral piece that builds in intensity. It’s not a piece I instantly recognize, but from the title, it appears to be a theme attached to Tadokoro.

This is followed by “Strange Feeling,” and it focuses on the electronic instruments but adds in strings as it goes along. I know it’s a piece I’ve heard because I recognize this. I’m pretty sure it shows up when something strange is happening. “High Cadence” is a very recognizable piece of music, and it shows up when Sakamichi picks up his cadence and wows people around him with how fast he’s going. It’s a piece that’s shown up a lot over the course of the series.

“Sakamichi’s Smile” is another variation on “Sakamichi.” It’s very similar, but it seems to just be a slight bit slower in tempo. It’s also about 30 seconds shorter. Next is “Curiosity,” which is a track that relies more on the electronic instruments, with some horns thrown in. This is another very recognizable piece of the score, and it usually shows up when one of the characters is curious about something that’s going on.

The next track on the disc is “Huge Stone Wall,” and it is a much more downbeat piece that builds in intensity. I have to admit that this isn’t one of the score pieces that’s instantly recognizable to me. It’s a good piece, but I just can’t place it off the top of my head. “Legs Can’t Move” is a haunting piece, and from the title, it’s used when a rider is having problems while riding their bike (such as not being able to move their legs because they’re worn out).

This is followed by “Monologue,” and it has a strong emphasis on flutes and woodwind instruments, which is a bit more unusual for this soundtrack. It’s another great piece of music, but I just can’t place where it comes from off the top of my head. “Close Game” has a strong emphasis on strings, piano, and electronics. This is a piece of music I instantly recognize, and it shows up when a race is getting close and a rider is thinking about what’s going on.

“Pulling Over” is a track that is more intense, and I recognize it from the races in the series. It’s a piece that shows up when a race is getting intense. Next is “Rising Feelings,” and this is one of those pieces that’s instantly recognizable to viewers of the series. It shows up during a race when it appears that things may be turning around in a race for one of the characters.

The next track on the disc is “Turnabout,” which is another instantly recognizable piece. It shows up as a situation turns around during a race, hence the title of the track. “Top Sprinter” has an interesting sound to it, and some of this sounds like a variation of “Turnabout.” It’s a little slower in tempo, but some of the instrumentation is a little more intense.

This is followed by “Game Of Tag,” which has a very electronic sound to it. The best way to describe this track is that it’s “thumpy.” This is another piece I recognize, between the fact that it’s used a bit in the series, plus it has a very unique sound when compared to many of the other score pieces that are used in the series. “A Heavy Body” sounds like a variation of “Close Game,” although it seems to have a little more in the way of instruments in its arrangement.

“Patience” starts out slow, but then suddenly becomes a very upbeat and guitar-oriented piece. This is another piece that I recognize from the soundtrack. I find it kind of amusing that this is labeled as “Patience,” because this is not what I would imagine a piece with this title sounding like. Next is “Two-Click Shift Up,” which is another very memorable piece of the score that’s heard on a regular basis in the races. I like the mixture of guitar, keyboards, and electronics on this one.

The next track on the disc is “Promise,” which is another piece I recognize instantly. It usually shows up when Sakamichi makes a promise to one of his team members. It’s more of a midtempo track and it kind of makes me think of a military march for some reason. “Bond” is a midtempo track, but it has an “airy” sound to its musical arrangement. It’s not a piece that’s instantly recognizable to me, though. But as I listen to it, it seems to incorporate a little bit of a variation of “Sakamichi” near the end of the track.

“View Of The Peak” is yet another variation of “Sakamichi,” although this one is much slower. It’s also a little shorter than “Sakamichi.” I guess it shouldn’t be too surprising how many variations there are on Sakamichi’s theme, since he is the protagonist, after all. The final track on the disc is “Heart Full Of Expectation,” which is a more midtempo piece that I kind of recognize from the series.

Overall, I really enjoyed Yowamushi Pedal O.S.T. 1. This disc contains quite a few of the recognizable score pieces from Yowamushi Pedal, which helps to make this a great listening experience because of how much I enjoy the anime. Even though a small handful of pieces weren’t recognizable to me, I still enjoyed them. Kan Sawada has done such a great job composing the score for Yowamushi Pedal, and the talent on display in these pieces is incredible.

I would highly recommend Yowamushi Pedal O.S.T. 1 to fans of the Yowamushi Pedal anime. Unfortunately, as of this writing, it seems like the only place you can find and get a brand new copy of this directly from a retailer is at CDJapan.

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