The new Pokémon series may have the same original Japanese name, but it’s scored by a brand new composer.

What’s your favorite track from the Pokémon anime? As an English-speaking millennial, it’s hard to go wrong with the original series’ earnest belting vocals and soaring electric guitar riffs.

▼ You teach me and I’ll teach you! Pokémoooooooon!

The original Pokémon series was broadcast in 1997 in its native Japan and came with its own library of smash hits, not least its incredible orchestral score arranged by Shinji Mizaki. Mizaki translated background music from the original GameBoy games into swooping, epic compositions that got viewers’ hearts racing week after week; in fact, he continued to handle the anime series’ music until the start of the most recent series, simply titled Pocket Monsters, like the original. This series, known as Pokémon: New Journeys in English, is scored by Yuki Hayashi, famous for his music work on the My Hero Academia and PreCure series.

▼ Series newcomer, Yuki Hayashi.

The change in music supervision isn’t the only exciting thing. For the first time in ten years, since the release of Shinji Miyazaki’s Pocket Monsters Original Soundtrack Best 1997-2010 Vol.1 and Vol.2, the anime’s soundtrack will be printed to physical CD and sold in stores. The new series has shaken up the formula in a number of ways, not least allowing protagonist Satoshi to share the spotlight with deuteragonist Gou, but many efforts have been made to retain what made the original Pokémon series so special while forging a new path.

Hayashi commented on the release himself:

“I never would have imagined that I would get to handle the music for a Pokémon series. However, since I was given the opportunity, I wanted to make the most of it. I really wanted to make a soundtrack that felt like an upended toybox packed full of exciting toys, so that’s the vibe I went with when putting the score together!”

“On a personal note, there’s this one track titled “Aratanaru Hajimari” (New Beginnings) that contains a lot of my hopes. Of course I want all the people who grew up with Pokémon to enjoy it, but while making this track I wished especially hard that the newcomers to the franchise, the kids first coming into contact with the Pokémon world, would enjoy it to the fullest.”

“Whether you play alone or bring a lot of friends, I hope you come to love this world a lot!”

The soundtrack, TV Anime Pocket Monsters Original Soundtrack, hits shelves on November 4 and retails for 2,500 yen (US$23.77) plus tax. Until then, we’ll keep playing the Bump of Chicken song made in honor of the series!

Source, images: PR Times
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