We know how it is. Get to the midpoint of the day and it feels like an endless struggle; you have a brief taste of freedom over lunch, and you want more. But it’s back to the grindstone for you before you’re released from your torment — what’s a drone of modern capitalist society to do?
Throw on your headphones and listen to some uplifting music, of course. And music doesn’t come more uplifting than the output of various VTubers from around the world, so here’s a few pick-me-ups to get you through the afternoon ahead of you.
Foolish Heart (Nyanners)
The most recent release on this list, VShojo VTuber Nyanners’ first solo song — as opposed to songs where she’s appeared as a featured artist — is a thoroughly enjoyable ’90s-style pop number developed in collaboration with Japanese producer and DJ kissmenerdygirl.
It’s got a great beat, a catchy melody and some breathy, sensual vocals from everyone’s favourite ancient evil who wants nothing more than for you to have a nice day (and to show her your toilets).
Nyanners first revealed the song on a livestream several hours ahead of her appearing on the virtual stage alongside VTuber legend Kizuna Ai, and appears to have been delighted with the response to it so far. If you’re yet to listen, crank up the volume and enjoy.
AIAIAI – Kizuna Ai (feat. Yasutaka Nakata)
Speaking of the aforementioned VTuber legend Kizuna Ai, AIAIAI is probably the most well-known of the several songs she’s released to date — it even appears in the base game of Groove Coaster Wai Wai Party!!!! on Nintendo Switch.
It’s a delightfully catchy, infectious little pop song with a distinctly Japanese feel to it thanks to its heavy use of the pentatonic scales and instrumentation associated with traditional music from out east. Plus it’s yet another use of the “AI” pun that Kizuna Ai is so fond of — “AI” can be short for “artificial intelligence”, which she’s always positioned herself as, but it’s also the Japanese word for “love”.
Red – Calliope Mori
Most of the VTubers in Hololive EN have tried their hand as music at one point or another — even if some of them are rather better at it than others! While they’re all entertaining, Our Boi Calli is clearly the one who is most serious about making music “work” for her, and since her debut has put out a variety of absolute bangers that cover a range of different musical styles.
What’s great about Calli’s music is that she doesn’t constrain herself to a single musical genre or even a single gimmick, and Red, her latest release from her Your Mori. EP, is a great example of this. Eschewing the witty but self-deprecating rap for which she is perhaps best known in favour of some rather sweet vocals, Red is an energetic but dark song that fits Calli’s persona perfectly.
At least, the persona she likes to put across through her work, anyway; but if you’ve watched one of her non-music VTuber livestreams you’ll know she’s actually a massive, adorable dork, making for one of the most formidable cases of “gap moe” you’ll ever see.
Ai no Chiisana Uta – Moona Hoshinova
Okay, I said I was going to share uplifting tracks, but this tearjerker from Hololive ID’s VTuber Moona Hoshinova is too good not to put on this list. Blending emotional lyrics with a simple but dramatic musical accompaniment, this is the perfect song to whack on if you need a good cry. It happens to the best of us.
If you’ve enjoyed the work of Hololive EN, Hololive ID is worth checking out; as many longstanding fans will point out, they were actually some of the first agency VTubers out there who spoke primarily English in their streams, well before HoloEN arrived. Moona seems to be a particular favourite VTuber of many viewers — and her vocal talents on display in this stream are just one of many reasons why.
PEKORANDOMBRAIN! – Usada Pekora
If Moona gave you a bad case of the feels, then Pekora should pick you right up with her first original song, released early this year. Carrying with it the distinct vibe of a ’90s anime opening — helped along by the fabulous art in the accompanying video — PEKORANDOMBRAIN! is, as the name suggests, a pretty chaotic affair, but you can’t help but love it.
After this song released, a lot of fans found themselves wondering when the official Pekora anime would be getting underway. And with the mysterious “Hololive Alternative” project still waiting in the wings, it’s not beyond the realm of possibility!
What are your favourite VTuber songs? Let’s hear ’em in the comments and via the usual social channels.
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