Raja Farouk 18 Piece Orchestra Reimagines Our Favourite Anime Soundtracks

Music has always been a core part of every anime and cosplay convention in Malaysia. Yet, anime concerts are few and far in between, and even fewer are as unique as the one we attended last Sunday.

The Anime Soundtracks Concert was hosted in JAO TIM, a café and cocktail bar located in the cultural heart of Kuala Lumpur. Even though details were only announced slightly over a week before the event, the venue was completely packed with anime and music fans alike.

The anticipation in the air was palpable as audiences filled the room an hour before the concert began — a Malaysian miracle! — and managed to catch the band in the middle of their soundcheck. However, that was only a short prelude to an exciting show ahead.

Presented by the Raja Farouk Band featuring musicians from the Sunway University Ensemble, we found ourselves swept into the past as classic anime soundtracks were reimagined in fresh and even surprising genres. This was inspired in part by Farouk’s late introduction to Japanese pop, as he explained during the show, leading to a fusion of Eastern and Western genres from disco to electro.

The setlist was nostalgic to the core, curated from a mixture of anime and film across the decades, and even some personal selections from the accompanying vocalists: Jei Suzukii, Rakuta, Rina-Hime, Fate Feather, and Khor Bin Yun. New to the RFB line-up, Jei Suzukii and Rakuta presented especially strong performances with Jei’s high-energy vocals and Rakuta’s soulful renditions.

Our favourites of the night were “1/2 (Han Bun)” from Samurai X, a dreamy rendition of “I Am A Dreamer” from Cardcaptor Sakura, and a heartfelt performance of “Romantic Agerou” from Dragon Ball; which felt even more bittersweet after creator Akira Toriyama’s passing earlier this month. But the one that took us by surprise was “Kaibutsu” from BEASTARS which they remixed with their own RFB flavour.

Right before they wrapped up for the night, the band also performed a handful of non-anime songs including “Wo Men De Ai” by F.I.R. and a Japanese version of “Golden Hour” by JVKE. The night closed with a surprise song that wasn’t included in the released setlist, and a personal favourite of mine, “You & I” by IU.

Even to the untrained ear, it is crystal clear that RFB are great at what they do; infusing their signature flair into each and every orchestral arrangement. At the heart of it, Farouk makes it all possible with an impeccable ear for talent, making RFB one of the best platforms for elevating the next generation of ACG vocal and musical talents.

In fact, this was their entire idea behind Voices, an anime singing competition hosted for the first time at Noizucon 2023 where finalists engaged in a battle of the voices, backed with orchestrated pieces performed live by RFB.

Needless to say, we had a great time at the Anime Soundtracks Concert and we already can’t wait for what RFB has up their sleeves next. Make sure you don’t miss their next performance by following them on Instagram!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

A Guide To Strategic Mastery In Card Games: The Art of Reading Your Opponent

A Guide To Strategic Mastery In Card Games: The Art of Reading Your Opponent

In the world of trading card games, victory often hinges on more than just the

Re:ZERO x Goddess of Victory: Nikke Collaboration Arrives March 21st

Re:ZERO x Goddess of Victory: Nikke Collaboration Arrives March 21st

Goddess of Victory: Nikke has announced on Twitter that a collaboration event

You May Also Like