THTFHQ Awards 2020 results

THTFHQ Awards 2020

Your favorite male seiyuu, your favorite music releases at THTFHQ AWARDS 2020! The results are here!

A big thank you to everyone that took some time to participate in this year’s edition of the THTFHQ AWARDS!

As per usual, THTFHQ AWARDS are the annual awards conducted by THTFHQ in which popularity is not a driving factor and all male seiyuu that were active in the music industry in that year’s edition have their right to the spotlight, no rankings made!

THTFHQ AWARDS are quite the nostalgic and fun celebration of male seiyuu’s efforts / work in the music industry without anime or games behind them. Just male seiyuu unfiltered, doing the music they love as solo acts, bands and seiyuu units.

And THTFHQ AWARDS 2020 were no different.

From December 24 to December 30, 2020, you got your chance to cast votes in your favorite CDs of the year by your favorite male seiyuu.

And in this edition, you got to not only vote but you were also an active voice about your favorite male seiyuu.

Some of your comments are featured in this article and also in the SEIYUU LOUNGE episode dropping on Friday (January 8, 2021).

The video version will be more complete – with my commentary on the releases and the comments themselves – so make sure to check the video when it drops. I invite you to subscribe to THTFHQ’s YouTube channel to not miss it when it drops.

If your comment isn’t mentioned in any of the 2 features, have into attention that hundreds of fans left their comments and I couldn’t feature all in this article. At the same time, there may be some commenters quoted more than once in this feature as they were among the few that voted + commented about all voice actors and bands up for voting.

Additionally, comments not necessarily referring to the CDs in question weren’t considered + there were plenty of people that commented without leaving their nickname so, those weren’t also taken into account. And yes, there was someone that wrote their name as “Anonymous”.

Without further ado, these are your favorite releases.

Solo artists

Showtaro Morikubo “WAY OUT”

Showtaro Morikubo WAY OUT

Showtaro Morikubo‘s 2020 wasn’t the best – if you look at his sales numbers – but the quality of his music? Off the charts in my opinion.

WAY OUT” is the most voted release of his with 76,9% of the votes, a resounding “YES” to a single that was intricate, incisive and with a clear message on top of all those cool shredding guitar riffs and growly, passionate vocals.

Just like you, “WAY OUT” is my favorite CD released by Showtaro Morikubo in 2020. On heavy rotation on my side yet I still wonder how it didn’t fare well on Oricon’s charts (sold below 1000 copies in Japan).

What do Showtaro Morikubo’s fans say about this release?

Comment by Reiko

Showtaro Morikubo debuted as a solo artist in 2001 with Zui.

He is well known for his shredding brand of hardrock and dark vibe with some rap-rock touches on top.

Never changing yet ever evolving, Showtaro Morikubo is an ear-catching singer-songwriter. The definition of a cool and edgy rocker.

Soma Saito “in bloom”

Soma Saito "in bloom"

Soma Saito took 2020 by storm with his sophomore album “in bloom“. And this is your choice with 53,8% of the votes.

Emotionally stripped, refreshing and tasteful in its music compositions, powerful, intricate lyrics, flawless production + mixing and passionate performances making use of a big chunk of his vocal range turned “in bloom” into one of the best, if not the best album released by a male seiyuu to date.

Many fans found themselves with their emotions all over the place with this album. Its darkness and melancholy pull at your heart strings even with the album counting with carefree songs, ballads and sexy loungy tunes to ease a bit that pain.

The full range of emotions and how well the songs were put together – mastering included – make for each listen of “in bloom” to be an emotional rollercoaster, unfortunately, without a happy ending.

This is THTFHQ’s Album of the Year as well as your 2020 ALBUM OF THE YEAR. An absolutely flawless album. An album levels above the quality that music released by seiyuu usually has.

But I’ve already talked and wrote plenty about this album.

What do Soma Saito’s fans say about this release?

Comment sent by Reimi
Comment sent by Belle about “Palette”, song featured in “in bloom”
Comment sent by abbi.gitsune about “Palette”, song featured in “in bloom”

Soma Saito is active as a singer and songwriter. He made his solo debut under SACRA MUSIC (a division of Sony Music Entertainment Japan) in 2017 with the single, Fish Story.

Since then he released a total of 3 singles – Fish Story, Yoake wa Mada / Hikari Tatsu Ame, Date – , 2 full-length albums – quantum stranger and in bloom – and an EP – my blue vacation – , all of these ranking within Oricon Weekly’s top 10, making him the most consistent seiyuu when physical sales and charts are involved.

In 2020, Saito released a trilogy of digital singles (the first trilogy by male seiyuu), “in bloom”.

Tasuku Hatanaka “DYING WISH”

Tasuku Hatanaka DYING WISH

Tasuku Hatanaka had quite the odd year. He was pretty active in starting from the Summer season. He released 3 singles – HISTORY, DYING WISH and Promise for the Future.

Out of these 3 singles, your pick, with 65,2% of the votes is “DYING WISH“.

The single’s title track was featured as the opening theme for the crime / mystery / psychological anime, Moriarty the Patriot (awesome yet underappreciated anime series, if you can, please give it a look).

The song turned into a fan favorite, with many overseas fans finding about Hatanaka in the process.

On my side, I didn’t consider DYING WISH as a well accomplished single (HISTORY is my favorite single of his released in 2020).

DYING WISH has plenty of flaws in its mixing and mastering that make the title track’s chorus take a really weird and untasteful turn.

Still, good to see that more people found Hatanaka because of this song. He’s got plenty of good songs in his repertoire and has an amazing voice and technique well worth supporting.

What do Tasuku Hatanaka’s fans say about this release?

Comment sent by Meegeemee26

Tasuku Hatanaka debuted as a solo artist in 2018 under Lantis. He has been keen on an electro-pop sound but when needed, he puts his singing skills to test and impresses with his falsetto in cool ballads.

According to Lantis he is, alongside labelmates Makoto Furukawa and Shugo Nakamura, part of the new generation of talents that will define this decade.

Mamoru Miyano “ZERO to INFINITY”

Mamoru Miyano ZERO to INFINITY

Mamoru Miyano was quite active in 2020. He released 2 singles – Hikari Sasu Hou e and ZERO to INFINITY – and held his first ever live streaming show in December 2020.

Out of both releases, you picked ZERO to INFINITY with 59,3% of the votes.

ZERO to INFINITY was Mamo’s return to his top form.

After a couple of inconsistent releases, this was his peak in 2020, a single that perfectly captured his trademark sound yet incorporating the heavy K-pop and western pop inspirations that have been present in the past couple of years.

What do Mamoru Miyano’s fans say about this release?

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Mamoru Miyano made his debut in 2007 with Kuon and since then has established himself as the most successful solo act among seiyuu.

Sold out arenas, best selling albums and a continuous momentum have made him an unavoidable and respectful figure in the industry.

Daisuke Ono “STARGAZER”

Daisuke Ono STARGAZER regular edition

Daisuke Ono wasn’t the most active in the music industry in 2020 however, STARGAZER alone was more than enough to impress his fans.

Rock, funk, disco made their way into this album and lit up the dancefloor for OnoD’s fans. Entertaining and overflowing with energy, STARGAZER was a pretty good entry in OnoD’s repertoire.

What do Daisuke Ono’s fans say about this release?

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Daisuke Ono debuted as a solo artist in 2007 with hinemosu. Since then he has established himself as the most popular solo act – of seiyuu background – under Lantis. Jazz, Funk and disco are the music genres that fuel his music.

Koutaro Nishiyama “CITY”

Koutaro Nishiyama CITY regular edition cover

In 2020, Koutaro Nishiyama‘s fans got to experience a new side of his. His solo debut came as a surprise and, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, he had a pretty delayed debut.

Announcing the release of his debut single early in 2020 but only releasing the mini-album late in the year.

Still, “CITY” was well received by his fans and it counts with songs penned by Koutaro Nishiyama – yet another different side to his talented self.

What do Koutaro Nishiyama’s fans say about this release?

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Koutaro Nishiyama made his solo debut in 2020 with CITY. He’s best known as a member of Ryuseitai and ZOOL.

Toshiki Masuda “Diver”

toshiki masuda diver regular

Toshiki Masuda is yet another male seiyuu that had a pretty big yet, at the same time, pretty quiet year in the music industry.

The talented voice actor, model, stage actor and singer released his 1st full-length album, diver, early on in 2020 and was well received by his fans.

What do Toshiki Masuda’s fans say about this release?

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Toshiki Masuda made his solo debut in 2019 with This One. His sound is heavily influenced by Japanese rock bands such as BUMP OF CHICKEN and Asian Kung-Fu Generation.

Shugo Nakamura “Colorful”

Shugo Nakamura colorful regular

Shugo Nakamura had quite the busy year. He released his 2nd single, Colorful and the digital single, Oh No!!.

He continues to feed his fans with sweet lyrics and warm performances time and time again yet, the single you fell in love with the most in 2020 was “Colorful” counting with 60% of the votes.

What do Shugo Nakamura’s fans say about this release?

Comment sent by Raina

Shugo Nakamura made his solo debut in 2019 with the single, Here comes The SUN. He’s a singer and lyricist best known for his warm acoustic sound and playful guitar riffs on top of his versatile and powerful vocals.

Miyu Irino “Life is…”

Miyu Irino Life is... regular edition

Miyu Irino‘s 3rd full-length album went almost under the radar. “Life is…” was released in November 2020 and had a pretty lukewarm reception by Irino’s fans in Japan.

However, those overseas were over the moon about this album and how much it depicted Irino’s kind and gentle personality and music sense.

What do Miyu Irino’s fans say about this release?

Comment sent by Shinoa

Miyu Irino was the first solo act to join Kiramune. He made his debut in 2009 with the single, Soleil.

Since then he’s changed a lot with his sound maturing and the messages passed in his lyrics and composition exuding it. Rock and jazz have been, as of late, his playground.

Toshiyuki Toyonaga “Oyozuregoto”

Toshiyuki Toyonaga Yogen

The OG singer/songwriter among male seiyuu – and undisputed best singer among male seiyuu – had quite the calm year in the music industry.

Toshiyuki Toyonaga released in 2020 the single “Oyozuregoto” and once again impressed with his music sense and outstanding quality on the vocal end.

What do Toshiyuki Toyonaga’s fans say about this release?

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Toyonaga made his solo debut in 2014 with the full-length self-produced and composed album “MUSIC OF THE ENTERTAINMENT”.

He started his solo career as an indie artist however, in 2015, he signed a contract with Aniplex+ and made his major debut under the label.

The partnership didn’t last long and, by 2017, Toyonaga was back as an indie artist, this time under his own music label, T’s music.

Toyonaga is considered by both fellow voice actors and fans as the best singer among male seiyuu.

Daisuke Namikawa “wonderful days”

Daisuke Namikawa wonderful days regular

Daisuke Namikawa released a new single in 2020. “wonderful days” had quite the lukewarm reception by his fans.

As expected, the single counted with bright, upbeat pop songs at its core, made to warm up the hearts of his fans.

Namikawa’s fans were too shy to give feedback on this CD and, since it was a release I didn’t review it, I won’t leave an in-depth comment about this release.

Daisuke Namikawa made his solo debut in 2009 with the single “ID”, since then he has changed style and music genres explored, putting rock behind and embracing a bubbly, playful pop sound.

Tetsuya Kakihara “Live in ToKyo”

Tetsuya Kakihara "Live in ToKyo"

Tetsuya Kakihara released his 3rd full-length album “Live in ToKyo“.

Like many of Kiramune’s artists, his album had a pretty weak reception in comparison with his usual performance on the Oricon Charts.

The album follows up the awesome funk-rock single, “GET OVER HERE“.

Kakihara’s fans were too shy to give feedback on this CD and, since it was a release I didn’t review, I won’t leave an in-depth comment about this release.

Tetsuya Kakihara made his solo debut under Kiramune in 2010 with the single, Still on Journey.

Although initially a pop artist with a heavy focus on electronica, Kakihara changed his sound and image in 2015 with the release of Saichaina.

Since then he has been on a consecutive run of solid releases, showing that he has found his colors and has matured as a performer.

Makoto Furukawa “from fairytale”

Makoto Furukawa "from fairytale"

One of the best and most expressive singers among male seiyuu, Makoto Furukawa went all in and released his 1st full-length album, from fairytale.

Jazz in full swing, awesome passionate vocals, witty lyrics and a vast emotional range are just some of Furukawa’s greeting cards. Yet, it is pretty weird how he is still incredibly underrated as a singer + lyricist.

“from fairytale” is your pick with 75% of the votes.

What do Makoto Furukawa’s fans say about this release?

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Makoto Furukawa is active as a singer and lyricist. He made his debut in 2018 under Lantis with Miserable Masquerade.

In 2019, he released the sophomore single, Chizu ga nakute mo modoru kara, furher solidifying his stance as one of the most exciting solo artists among male seiyuu seiyuu.

Jazz is his element, going for those flamboyant rhythms and compositions and flashy, vibrato-filled performances.

Jun Fukuyama “P.o.P – PERS of Persons”

fukuyama P.o.P -PERS of Persons- regular

Jun Fukuyama’s upbeat EDM-pop sound was in full force in 2020 with the release of “P.o.P – PERS of Persons“.

Fukuyama’s fans were too shy to give feedback on this CD and, since it was a release I didn’t review, I won’t leave an in-depth comment about this release.

Jun Fukuyama has had an interesting career as a solo act.

Before making his major debut with PONY CANYON in 2017, he had been releasing his own song + reading indie albums since 2009 up until 2013.

Shunichi Toki “True Gazer”

Shunichi Toki True Gazer regular edition

Shunichi Toki revisited the 60s and 70s for his 1st mini-album, “True Gazer“. Fans were excited about this new direction in Toki’s solo career, tackling a sound and style that he’d never tried before.

The mini-album was well received by his fans and added another layer of versatility to his career.

What do Shunichi Toki’s fans say about this release?

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Shunichi Toki made his debut under PONY CANYON in 2019 with Yakusoku no Overture. In 2020, he released his first concept album, PARTY JACKER.

His sound is more on the pop side but there are some hints of jazz in it that flow pretty well with Toki’s smooth, hearty vocals.

Masatomo Nakazawa “Tales of World’s End / Seisei Dodo”

masatomo nakazawa tales of world's end regular

Masatomo Nakazawa took a big step in 2020 by making his solo debut under Marine Entertainment.

His fans were pretty excited about the release of his 1st single “Tales of World’s End / Seisei Dodo” yet, when it came to physical sales, the single didn’t sell more than 1000 copies, which is worrying, especially for a debut.

What do Masatomo Nakazawa’s fans say about this release?

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Shouta Aoi “BAD END”

Shouta Aoi BAD END cover

Shouta Aoi may have had a pretty quiet year in terms of music releases but BAD END made quite the massive impression.

I still recall listening to “Existence” – when I was reviewing it – and kept staring at my PC’s screen, completely in awe with how refreshing and unique that song was in Aoi’s repertoire.

Most fans, however, are bigger fans of the title track – BAD END – that was featured as the ending theme of the comedy / isekai anime, My Next Life as a Villainess: All Routes Lead to Doom!.

What do Shouta Aoi’s fans say about this release?

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Shouta Aoi has a unique story as a solo artist. He made his debut as SHOWTA, in 2006 and was a solo act until 2009. He then signed with Broccoli in 2013 and changed his stage name to Shouta Aoi.

In 2016 he moved up to the big league and joined KING RECORDS. Aoi’s trademark is his unique singing tone and range. Bubbly pop, rock and ballads are just some of the music genres he has performed over the years.

Takuma Terashima “Assemble”

Takuma Terashima Assemble

Takuma Terashima released his 4th full-length album “Assemble” in 2020. Rock, EDM and pop met once again to create this album.

Assemble” got a lukewarm response by Terashima’s fans despite all the excitement that there was initially about it.

Terashima’s fans were too shy to give feedback on this CD and, since it was a release I didn’t review, I won’t leave an in-depth comment about this release.

Takuma Terashima debuted as a solo artist in 2012 with the single, “magic words”. He is known for being a pop-rock artist but, over the years, he has experimented with pop and electronica.

Wataru Hatano “Never End! Summer!” (single)

Hatano Never End! Summer! regular

Wataru Hatano went under the radar for many fans with both his digital and physical singles.

Never End! Summer!” was firstly released as a digital single in the summer and later was released as a physical release, counting with the awesome “Vivid Junction“.

And this is your pick with 53,3% of the votes.

What do Wataru Hatano’s fans say about this release?

Comment sent by abbi.gitsune

Wataru Hatano made his solo debut under Avex Records in 2011 with the single, Hajimari no Hi.

He has consistently released pop-rock music and has, over the years, featured some of his song in anime series. He’s best known however for being the leader of TRIGGER (as Gaku Yaotome).

Hiroshi Kamiya “TP”

TP Hiroshi Kamiya regular

Hiroshi Kamiya graced his fans with new, bright pop music in 2020.

The mini-album, TP hit stores in April, being well received by his fans.

Kamiya’s fans were too shy to give feedback on this CD and, since it was a release I didn’t review, I won’t leave an in-depth comment about this release.

Hiroshi Kamiya made his debut in 2009 under Kiramune with the single, Hare no Hi. Since then he has released multiple singles, albums and mini-albums, all met with some success.

Yuma Uchida “Over”

Yuma uchida over cover

Yuma Uchida was quite active in 2020, releasing 2 singles – “Over” and “Image” – and an English version of his debut single, NEW WORLD.

While still an R&B-pop artist, Yuma Uchida experimented with rock, hip-hop, giving away for awesome, refreshing results. “Over” stood out as the best single of his in 2020 for me as well as your favorite counting with 40% of the votes.

What do Yuma Uchida’s fans say about this release?

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Yuma Uchida made his solo debut in 2018 under KING RECORDS with the single NEW WORLD.

Since then he has released 6 singles and a full-length album, exploring R&B pop but with some traces of rock, EDM and hip-hop in his sound.

Insane skill as a singer and a lot of flair as a performer make him one of the most exciting talents of his generation.

Gakuto Kajiwara “A Walk”

Gakuto Kajiwara "A Walk"

Gakuto Kajiwara made his solo debut in 2020 under Avex (Wataru Hatano, Paradox Live), with only 3 years of career as a voice actor under his belt (turning into the youngest voice actor to make a solo debut).

A Walk” was quite the surprising single, exploring rock and ballads with awesome results.

What do Gakuto Kajiwara’s fans say about this release?

Comment sent by Anonymous

Hiro Shimono “We GO!”

Hiro Shimono WE GO Regular edition

Hiro Shimono released an ambitious full-length album with WE GO!. Rock and pop were a big presence in this release.

For those that took the time to check it out, the music video for the title track was recorded in London before the worldwide lockdown due to Covid-19.

What do Hiro Shimono’s fans say about this release?

Comment sent by Reiko

Shimono made his major debut with PONY CANYON in 2016 with the single, REAL. He collaborated with Shinya, LUNA SEA’s legendary drummer, for Running High in 2017.

His music is a blend of pop and rock, with his latest releases leaning more towards bubbly, upbeat rock.

Bands / Seiyuu Units

OLDCODEX “Core Fade”

OLDCODEX Core Fade regular

OLDCODEX had quite the uneventful year. The band was getting ready for an exciting nationwide tour and, unfortunately, had to cancel it altogether.

When it came to music releases, the band released 1 single, Core Fade. And it such an awesome entry in their repertoire.

For long time fans of the band, it winked at OLDCODEX’s old-school electronica-meets-rock sound they had going when R.O.N was a member but also with a matured flair, something the band has been adamant about exploring and polishing for them (you can also find this matured version of the band’s rock with some accents of electronica in their massive album, LADDERLESS).

For many, Core Fade was a simpler single, making the band’s sound more accessible to casual listeners that aren’t that big on heavy, fast paced rock music but still want to listen to Ta_2’s vocals.

One thing is for certain, Core Fade was one of the best rock singles of the year, definitely worth checking out if you haven’t already.

What do OLDCODEX’s fans say about this release?

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OLDCODEX made their debut in 2009 with a self-titled mini-album.

Since then the band has released multiple singles, mini-albums and full-length albums that, more than often, chart high on Oricon’s charts.

OLDCODEX have experimented with hardrock, punk rock, pop-punk, hardcore and, as of late, don an alternative rock sound with bits of electronica in the mix.

GRANRODEO “Jonetsu wa Oboeteiru

GRANRODEO jounetsu regular

The big birthday boys were GRANRODEO. The band celebrated its 15th anniversary and there were plenty of awesome plans for 2020, from the band’s new live tour to e-ZUKA’s 30th anniversary as a musician live show.

But those went down the drain due to we know what.

The band still managed to release a single, Jonetsu wa Oboeteiru, and their massive GRANRODEO Singles Collection “RODEO BEAT SHAKE”.

Out of both releases, you chose with 60% of the votes, Jonetsu wa Oboeteiru.

Man, this single is so, so good. But, once again, when was the last time that GRANRODEO weren’t on top of their game?

e-ZUKA’s guitar work is off the charts, always impressing with a nod or 2 to classic rock guitarists, KISHOW is an absolute beast of a frontman, charismatic, insanely skilled and also a really solid lyricist.

GRANRODEO are also you band of 2020!

What do GRANRODEO’s fans say about this release?

Comment made by V

GRANRODEO made their debut in 2005 under Lantis with the single, Go For It!.

With over 35 releases under their belt, the band is as iconic as it is unique.

With seiyuu Kisho Taniyama – under the moniker KISHOW -, and with the insane guitar skills of e-ZUKA, GRANRODEO have established themselves as the best and most influential anisong band in the industry.

UMake “TRIPPER!!”

UMake tripper regular

UMake were the seiyuu unit that was the most active in 2020.

The talented self-producing duo consisting of fellow 81 Produce talents, Kento Ito and Yoshiki Nakajima released a full-length album – TRIPPER!! – and 2 singles – Darling! and Merry. -, wrapping up the year on a really good note.

Out of all these releases, your favorite, with 66,7% of the votes, is TRIPPER!!.

What do UMake’s fans say about this release?

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UMake, self-producing seiyuu unit consisting of 81 Produce’s talents Kento Ito and Yoshiki Nakajima, debuted under indie label, artsonic, in 2018 with SUMMER☆MONSTER.

Since then they have been making jaws dropping with their creativity and top tier vocals.

M4!!!! “Advance”

M4!!!! Advance regular

In 2020, fans of M4!!!! got to listen to the more fancy, upbeat electronica and powerful vocals + rap in “Advance“.

M4!!!!’s fans were too shy to give feedback on this CD so, here’s my take on this mini-album.

“Advance” went under the radar for many fans but it packed quite the interesting punch, sounding different from what you’d expect from a unit stemming from a radio show and housed by Marine Entertainment.

M4!!!! consist on Daiki HamanoKouhei AmasakiTakuma Nagatsuka and Taichi Ichikawa, hosts of RADIO M4!!!!.

Kashicomi “Dusk”

Kashicomi Dusk
Regular

Another seiyuu unit that has been going under the radar is Kashicomi.

The talented and versatile duo released their 2nd mini-album in 2020 and made quite the good impression with it.

M4!!!!’s fans were too shy to give feedback on this CD so, here’s my quick take on this mini-album (as the review will drop in a couple of days and I don’t want to spoil it for you).

Dusk” is a vast improvement on their original sound, revisiting old songs while bringing a lot of flair with new compositions.

The vocals are entertaining and certainly much different from what you are used to from both voice actors in the respective 2D idol/band projects they are a part of.

Kashicomi consist on Showhuku Showrai’s radio hosts, Sho Nogami and Shoya Chiba. The duo debuted in 2018 with an acoustic, bright pop-rock sound.

Amadeus “CREAM SODA”

AMADEUS CREAM SODA

For many fans, Amadeus gave them strength in 2020.

The talented duo has been quite the interesting listen since their debut, always pulling off something refreshing, catering to a wide variety of fans of good, fun music.

With 47,4% of the votes, your pick of best release in 2020 goes to CREAM SODA, summer song made to uplift the spirits of Amadeus fans as last year’s summer was nothing alike what you’d expect with the lockdowns issued a little bit throughout the world.

What do Amadeus’ fans say about this release?

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AMADEUS – Jack Westwood (voice actor Shunsuke Takeuchi) and Lotus Juice – debuted in 2018 with the digital single O.M.C.. They perform R&B, hip-hop, electronica and pop music.

M.O.E “MUSIC OTAKU ENTERTAINMENT CD”

M.O.E MUSIC OTAKU ENTERTAINMENT CD regular

M.O.E (Wataru Hatano and Takuma Terashima) released a new covers mini-album, MUSIC OTAKU ENTERTAINMENT CD.

In this release, the talented duo covered each other’s solo songs.

M.O.E’s fans were too shy to give feedback on this CD and, since it was a release I didn’t review, I won’t leave an in-depth comment about this release.

M.O.E made their debut under Marine Entertainment in 2011. They specialize in performing covers of popular anisong releases.

Masochistic Ono Band “6.9”

MASOCHISTIC ONO BAND 6.9

Masochistic Ono Band – Daisuke Ono and Hiroshi Kamiya – celebrated their 6.9 anniversary with “6.9“, mini-album with a cheeky pun title and a lot of rock to deliver to longtime fans.

MOB’s fans were too shy to give feedback on this CD and, since it was a release I didn’t review, I won’t leave an in-depth comment about this release.

Masochistic Ono Band debuted in 2013 with “Ace of Asia”. The air band – the members pretend to play the instruments on a live setting – stems from Hiroshi Kamiya and Daisuke Ono’s wildly popular radio show, Dear Girl Stories.

Sir Vanity “Vanity / Haruka”

Sir Vanity Vanity / Haruka

2020 was a year of surprises as well and Sir Vanity provided one of the most exciting yet weirdest of surprises.

Announcing a debut on April Fools is never a good idea, as most people will quickly tell themselves “it’s just for fun”.

However, Sir Vanity appear to have quite the quirky sense of humor and yeah, they were really making their debut, although not initially with music.

They kicked off their activities with an online radio show but then, out of nowhere again, the band announced the release of their debut single, “Vanity / Haruka“.

And what a single this one was! Yoshiki Nakajima and Yuichiro Umehara penned lyrics for the songs in it and it had an unfiltered rock sound with some hints of electronica that was refreshing to hear.

What do Sir Vanity’s fans say about this release?

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Sir Vanity made their debut on April Fools in 2020. The band is comprised from longtime friends – part of the famous Nikukai group – and fellow male seiyuu, Yoshiki Nakajima and Yuichiro Umehara.

In their ranks and playing bass is Arte Refact’s Satoru Kuwabara who, if you’re not aware of, is the composer behind Makoto Furukawa’s stellar album, “from fairytale”.

SparQlew “evergreen”

SparQlew evergreen regular

SparQlew were caught in the middle of the lockdown in Japan, something that completely disrupted the talented quintet’s schedule of releases for 2020.

They ended up releasing “evergreen” in July, album that topped the iTunes charts and was extremely well received as far as physical sales went. The group then went and released, a couple of months later, their single “Helvetica”, also well received by their fans.

However, in your books, your favorite release was “evergreen” getting a resounding 100% of the votes.

SparQlew’s fans were too shy to give feedback on this CD and, since it was a release I didn’t review, I won’t leave an in-depth comment about this release.

SparQlew consist on Yuto UemuraShun HorieShoya Chiba, Yuuya Hozumi and Takuto Yoshinaga. They are signed to Kiramune and are well known for their bubblegum pop music.

Tetsuya Kakihara & Nobuhiko Okamoto “trust and play”

trust and play

One of the best surprises of the year came through the voices and lyrics of Tetsuya Kakihara and Nobuhiko Okamoto. They teamed up as a duo for a special release, “trust and play“.

It was a mini-album that went off the radar of many fans but what a gem it truly is. Filled with great, funky songs but keeping a really mature aura about it, “trust and play” turned into one of my favorite releases of the year. Same for you.

What do Tetsuya Kakihara & Nobuhiko Okamoto’s fans say about this release?

Comment sent by V

Tetsuya Kakihara & Nobuhiko Okamoto are a special unit created by Kiramune in 2020.

As solo artists, Kakihara and Okamoto have taken different routes, with Kakihara venturing towards a mature mix of rock with ballads (and the occasional peppy dance song) whereas Okamoto went the theatrical route but with a big focus on easy-listening, bubblegum pop music.

Uncle Bomb “Five Leaves”

uncle bomb five leaves regular

Uncle Bomb – Daisuke Namikawa and Hiroyuki Yoshino – made their comeback in 2020 with “Five Leaves“. The mini-album had a lukewarm reception, going off the radar for many people.

Uncle Bomb’s fans were too shy to give feedback on this CD and, since it was a release I didn’t review, I won’t leave an in-depth comment about this release.

Uncle Bomb debuted in 2016 and since then have been an entertaining outfit within the Kiramune roster. Pop, rock and even acoustic and electronica are all fair game for their playful brand of music.


Final considerations

Thanks to everyone that voted and left their comments! Like I said above, these awards are all by you to you.

No popularity contests, no rankings and see what we got! A lot of awesome music getting their deserved spotlight!

Indeed your favorite male seiyuu, your favorite music releases.

2020 was a really good year for fans of male seiyuu / bands / 2D music projects. There were awesome CDs from a wide variety of artists, catering to a wide variety of music tastes out there.

Exciting debuts and unexpected comebacks. It was a genuinely good year for fans of seiyuu music.

Hope you’ve arrived from 2020 in 2021 with a backpack filled of awesome, memorable music that keeps on being the fuel to your life.

Here’s to 2021 delivering even more quality and variety (with a pinch of surprises on top)!

See you all in December 2021 for THTFHQ AWARDS 2021!

Vanessa Silvahttps://www.handthatfeedshq.com
The Hand That Feeds HQ founder and music reviewer writing about Japanese music since 2010. Also, the only person managing everything The Hand That Feeds HQ related. In 2011, I stumbled upon Mamoru Miyano's "Orpheus". Since then I have been writing about male seiyuu music. You may find me writing almost essays whenever music is really good (not limited to, but it happens a lot with Soma Saito's music). I also host the male seiyuu-centric podcast, SEIYUU LOUNGE (see Spotify link in this profile).

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