Two months ago, I wrote a post about the portrayal of Snow White in anime and manga. I had decided to follow it up with a music post like I did with Alice in Wonderland before I got caught up with year-end recaps and other posts. Now that I’ve got time on my hands again, I can now present my list, the rankings for which are based on both the music and the fairy tale’s influence.
Hibari’s Hi 8 – Snow White Songs
8. “Heigh-ho” by Cascade – V-rock Disney gives us a manic J-rocker dwarves who are rushing to get to work (at least that’s what I imagine). The song sounds like it’s on fast-forward, but that’s part of the fun.
7. “Wana” by THE BACK HORN – The band weaves fairy tale and steampunk imagery, which includes a poison apple metaphor, into an address to a cold lover. Though dark at first, the song builds to a pleading chorus that Yamada Masashi belts so passionately and ending with a hopeful message.
6. “Blood Red Snow White” by Penicillin – If one of the dark Snow White manga ever became an anime, this would be the perfect theme. The lyrics are violent (or shall I say, bloody), and the guitars are loud and chaotic. The scratching in the middle and the almost rap-like vocals take me back to a time when nu-metal was all over the radio.
5. “Snow White” by D
Although the lyrics don’t have anything do with the fairy tale (unless this Snow White was never revived), the story has inspired the visuals of the PV, which is as gorgeous as the ballad itself. Asagi shines through the entire piece with heart-wrenching vocals that are backed by soft piano and strings.
4. “Garasu no Hitsugi de Nemuru Himegimi” by Sound Horizon – More mini-opera than song, this dramatic retelling (complete with dialogue) follows the original story pretty closely until the end. We get a glimpse of a possible not-so-happily ever after and Snow White who may not be all that unlike her stepmother.
3. “Shiroi Yuki no Princess wa” by Piko – Although Miku Hatsune originally sang this, Piko is better at sounding more like a sweet princess and more suited for the rock instrumentals. His voice rings with the bells and are a testament to his ability to hit notes that some female singers can’t reach.
2. “Little Mary to Utsukushiki Nikushimi no Danube” by exist†trace
The influence of “Snow White” is evident in exist†trace’s fairy tale, in which an angry mother poisons her teenage daughter (the Grimms originally had the evil queen as Snow White’s mother). With guitarist Miko as Mary and Jyou as the queen, a conversation takes place as the string-filled waltz descends into a hard rock nightmare.
1. “Kagami” by Kanon Wakeshima – Kanon Wakeshima makes a coy evil queen, as her voice starts off as a near whisper. The melody is also playful, but the tempo picks up as her vocals become stronger and stronger. Both are a reflection of the queen’s desperation for an answer that suffices and her punishment of dancing to her death.
Listening to: “Macabre” by Dir en Grey