Rise Of The Northstar love anime, manga and Japanese culture – so much so that we took them to London Comic Con in 2015 to immerse themselves in it fully. Now, armed with new single Here Comes The Boom and new album The Legacy Of Shi on the horizon, we thought we'd put the French hip-hop/metal merchants to the test by choosing the ten best anime of all time. Guitarist Eva-B took took up the challenge and here are his anime choices.
1. Neon Genesis Evangelion
"It's my favourite anime. The line 'Life hurts but when it hurts, it means you're alive,' from our song Step By Step, could be a good summary of Evangelion. It's not just about the robots, it’s about digging deep into the psychology of the characters to the point where you can relate to them in many ways. The author invites us to question our own lives, to push ourselves to the limit. Evangelion changed all the rules of animation in the 90s. A classic!"
2. Saint Seiya
"Pure style. Saint Seiya is my childhood, period. Saint Seiya is about protecting the widow and the orphan, it's about sacred armours that will make you want to get rid of your fashion-wear. It's about transcending one’s self, it's about the beautiful values of friendship, of love, of sacrifice, of honour. All the codes for the best Shonen!"
3. Cowboy Bebop
"It's the crossover of different universes, space-opera, western, darkness – all marrying the rhythm of jazz. It’s about a trio of badass bounty hunters with fascinating personalities, bringing together grown-up themes like escaping from one’s past memories, artificial intelligence, and lost love. It has a breath-taking ending! See you in space, cowboy!"
4. Detroit Metal City
"Perfect for metalheads. A young pop singer wants to make a career in music, and ends up playing in a death metal band! It's hilarious from beginning to end, with lots of metal clichés that made me laugh so hard. Endearing and delirious characters with a killer soundtrack!"
5. Eureka Seven
"Characters with crazy charisma, that we relate to very quickly – that's what compelled me in Eureka Seven. Very neat animation with a catchy rhythm and music. We are witnessing the impossible love story between two teenagers, narrated with finesse and emotion, all sprinkled with epic mecha battles."
6. Dragon Ball Z
"Dragon Ball Z is the school of life. It has a recognisable style, a particular drawing line, plus epic shouts and screams. You spend hours in your bedroom trying to get to the Super Saiyan form in vain. Who doesn't know Dragon Ball? It's the most famous manga of all time."
7. Serial Experimental Lain
"This anime essentially talks about the issue of virtual reality and the danger it can represent for humans. It's a slow, deep descent into madness, to the point that the viewer doesn't know where there are anymore. It's a series with a slow rhythm but with a lot of background and ingenuity. A heavy atmosphere, filled with sincerity and poetry, but it’s not afraid to make you uncomfortable and anxious when necessary."
8. Samurai Champloo
"It's a tale of of three lovable but complex vagabonds, seeking hope in their wandering, caught in between a nostalgia and the necessity to escape from a past that inevitably pursues them. Samurai Champloo has an unbelievable original soundtrack, composed of old school hip hop beats by Nujabes. It's a big critique about the end of an era and the globalisation of a country with vacillating values."
9. Sayonara Zetsubo Sensei
"What is better than a depressive teacher for a high school class? This anime is completely crazy from beginning to end. The morality of each episode is explained with absurd situations, which makes Sayonara Zetsubo Sensei unique and hilarious."
"The quintessence of Zen. Nature is the main theme of Mushishi. A wandering doctor walks around the country, bringing his art to beings in conflict with the aid of nature and the supernatural. Each episode is a life lesson; a concentration of oriental philosophy. He will have to cure the strangest symptoms, and will have to bow down to the strength of nature that will take away many human lives. Mushishi is the acceptance of reality that life sometimes imposes."
Rise Of The Northstar's upcoming second album The Legacy Of Shi is due for release October 19 via Nuclear Blast.
Check out their new video for Here Comes The Boom below.