Go go Power Rangers!
You just heard the guitar riff, didn't you? I am pretty sure everyone, no matter who they are or what their taste is in entertainment, gets a rush of pure unadulterated AWESOME when the original Power Rangers theme plays. It is one of the greatest theme songs of all time. Theme songs do a lot for a show. Ducktales, Rescue Rangers, Talespin, Disney has it figured out. Lots of shows did, I mean come on, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles!
But today, I'm going to talk about another show. A show that has lasted for 39 years, with the newest 39th Super Sentai series starting THIS YEAR! It is about ninjas, the third Sentai about ninjas in fact, and my excitement over watching ToQger currently and watching Gokaiger with my wife that has gotten me all atizzy about the other Super Sentai themes. Why? Because they are flipping awesome, that's why! But how can I share that with you? Well, with an arbitrary list that counts down all my favorites I wanna talk about! I am going to countdown my favorites sentai themes, and even better, link them to you, then create a playlist so you can listen to my favorites ... or just listen to all of them, because they are all on youtube! I have them running on my computer as I write articles, as I begin my new exercise regime, and even on CDs I made for the car!
There are 39 main themes because I'm not going to include the additional themes, mostly because then ToQ #6 awesome harmonica theme would win downright; and while I could rank all 39 of them, that would take forever, and that's not really a list ... I mean, it IS a list by the strict definition of what a list is, but it isn't an internet list, which is about giving you a smattering of information so that you are titillated enough to check the stuff out yourself. So here is my criteria for how a song gets on my list:
- Catchiness, or as I like to call it Get-Stuck-In-Your-Head-itude
- AWESOMENESS, or pure power and sheer musical might
- a lack of lameness; or the "no little kids singing"
- Great on its own, or the "you don't have to like Sentai or this series to like this song"
Ok, here we go, my ...
TOP 9 SUPER SENTAI THEME SONGS
The song starts out with this crazy old school theremin sound until it gets into its groove and the "whoa whoa whoa whoa." This song isn't one that's going to murder you with awesome, no, and that is why it is on the bottom of my favorites list, but it is absolutely a catchy piece with this fantastic groove, silly drumkit beat. It is a nice lead-in and gets stuck in my head every now and again. I'll just be wandering around Wal Mart or Kroger or wherever, doing mundane nothing like grocery shopping and I'll just start going "whoa whoa whoa whoa." That's how I knew it had to be represented on this list.
You never forget your first. This song is bright, happy, and fully orchestrated, which I always love. It is simple and catchy and fun. Watching the show I wanted it to be more pirate-y sounding, and that is probably my biggest critique of the song, that it fits as a great Sentai theme, but not as a great Sentai theme for the only pirate Sentai there has been. This is the kind of thing you can expect from most Sentai, just a bright and happy song. Until we get into the more awesome and the catchier ones!
I would be remiss to not put a theme song from the early years, and Denjiman is absolutely the one! With its trumpets and real cool bass beat. It is also another great one to sing a long with. It reminds me of "Where There's a Whip, There's a Way" which is a fabulous song in its own rights. It has this wonderful 70s feel to it, and while that is dated, as I almost always saying, dated =/= bad. This is a time capsule of a cool groovin' song. Denji-, denjiman, denji-, denjiman!
I love feeling like a hero! In fact, stay tuned, because next week there will be a new playlist review just like the Saddest and Happiest songs I did not too long ago, based on Triumphant songs! And I would be shocked if some of these didn't make the list, because this one and one a few steps higher absolutely take the cake for feeling like a HERO! The swell of the music, the orchestra moving at a fever pitch, the lead singer belting out his heroic intentions!
One of the things that makes me happiest is a nice epic build. And GoGoV has an incredible build up to the second chorus: SAVE THE EARTH! SAVE THE LIVES! I sing that at the top of my lungs and it makes me feel just absolutely epic. Not as epic as other songs, but it does the job for me. I considered starting the list here, but the other songs kept getting stuck in my head, so I had to include them. And I wasn't going to not mention this one.
SAVE THE EARTH! SAVE THE LIVES!
I talked about Power Rangers RPM not too terribly long ago, and how much I hated how ashamed the show felt of its silliness, trying to hide the inherent silly nature of the Sentai they used with its "dark and mature" story, which I ultimately felt failed. Go-Onger
If you need more proof, a friend walked in as I wrote this article, and she immediately started dancing. Immediately. Because of just the song. She doesn't know anything about the source material or the style of show, but she does know she liked this song. Boom boom bom bom, Go-Onger!
Remember how I talked about epicness with GoGoV? Timeranger is on this list because it is supremely epic. It murders epic, buries its corpse, and yet a bigger more awesome Groot tree rises where the seeds of epicness were buried, alive and well, bring awesomeness and epic brilliance to everyone around him as his epicness saves the entire galaxy!
Timeranger's theme is also the only song with a female lead, and it starts in English, which helps me get into it as an American. It isn't a requirement, as the next three will show you, but it really does help. I love the swell of the music, the amazing choir, the squealing electric guitar, the amazing organ music ... it is just a smorgasbord of great music!
We have now entered the super fricking fun and catchy section! The top 3 are all the most ridiculous energetic and catchy songs I've heard as themes. They are right up there with Ducktales and Rescue Rangers. These are themes that transcend language and show. They are songs we should be listening to all the time for fun, to work out, to cook, to clean, to sleep, to do everything!
Hurricanger is an inherently more hilarious song, with its silly beat and sound effects, sounding like the scoring was created in Mario Paint, and just an incredibly bubbly song and lyrics that are super singable, it is a great song. I really cannot get enough of it. The reason it does reach the top is it doesn't get me as pumped as the next to, and is nowhere near as serious with its ridiculous apprentice DJ soundboard music.
RAINBOW TRAINS POWERED BY IMAGINATION, WITH A BASICALLY SKA SONG AS THEIR THEME SONG! It doesn't fail like Gokaiger did, not sound like its theme, as you can always here the train track-styled rhythm all throughout. It has some seriously great music going on, too, like a really great second verse that is actually different sounding than the first. I know they are different words in most of these themes, but musically they all tend to be V-C-V-C-B-C, and that's all. But the second verse for ToQger has this amazingly cool kinda punky-ska drum breakdown before it gets back into the chorus. I really truly love this song. There is only one reason that it isn't number 1, and that's because of a language barrier that I'll eventually conquer. But what if there was a song just as hype and rocking, but I actually get the schtick of the Japanese without it having to slip into English for me to understand it? Hmmm .....
A cool traditional Japanese sound evolves into the most blood pumping, sweat inducing rock song, just ... ever! With its background chorus of "chan-bara-chan-bara" I can always sing along even when I don't quite know the words, I can sing every word of the chorus because it is simple enough and catchy enough and even better clear enough that I learned it no problem. This is the song I leave on repeat over and over as I do my new workout regime. I feel like a rocking hero all the time and just work and work and never grow tired as this song blasts along! It is a dense song musically, with a lot of melodies, counter melodies, and really tight harmonies all throughout, some of it modern rock, some of it updated traditional sounding Japanese musical. It keeps its themes of the show, reinforces them, and is fantastically musical in nature. I love the song. I loved the song before I started caring about Sentai at all. And that absolutely means something to me!
There we are! All nine. I could talk about so many more, like Go-Busters or Kakuranger, but these are the ones I'm limiting this article to. And like I promised, here is a fantastic playlist, in order, or my nine favorites! Give it a listen, and enjoy these songs, which truly are for everyone, Sentai lover or not.
TOP # Super Sentai Theme Songs Playlist