The Spring 2021 anime season is turning out to be much more stacked than expected. Although it seemed like Winter would leave a big hole, I actually have more shows on my watchlist now, and that makes it easy to look over a good show in the middle of it. “Mashiro no Oto” (Those Snow White Notes) anime is one that I almost missed, and it’s now one of my favorites of this season (along with Vivy -Fluorite Eye’s Song- and 86 -EIGHTY SIX-). Here’s a quick summary of why I think Mashiro no Oto, or Those Snow White Notes, is a hidden gem anime:
It follows Sawamura Setsu, a samisen player who moves to Tokyo after his grandfather passes away. His grandfather taught him to play the traditional Japanese musical instrument, but his death also meant the loss of his sound. He moves on a whim, and has a lucky encounter with Tachiki Yuna, who gives him a place to stay. She has a boyfriend, though it’s not a healthy relationship and it gets complicated within the first two episodes. The highlight is definitely Setsu’s samisen playing, as he touches the audience every time he does it, and it’s what we always look forward to. He doesn’t care about competition, and is trying to reach his grandfather’s sound, but it took the veteran around 30 years just to perfect his impromptu piece.
Not to say this is just a slice of life. Although the MC is talented and doesn’t care about competing, there’s many of characters that want to beat him and will likely confront him later. It includes the genius Kamiki Seiryuu, who made an appearance in the 3rd episode and got disappointed with Setsu.
This is also pretty subjective, but the cast has some really cool names. Sawamaru Setsu is voiced by Nobunaga Shimazaki. His other roles include Satoru Furuya from Diamond no Ace (another Winter boy who travels to the city), Yuno from Black Clover, Itsuka Shidou from Date a Live, Nanase Haruka from Free!, among others.
His brother Wakana is voiced by Yoshimasa Hosoya. That’s the recognizable voice of Reiner Braun from Attack on Titan, Daryun from Arslan Senki, Kunikida Doppo from Bungou Stray Dogs, and many others.
Kamiki Seiryuu is voiced by the cool Umehara Yuuichirou, who also voiced Seiyaa from Cautious Hero, Jail Murdock from Plunderer, Courier from Akudama Drive.
Setsu’s mom Umeko is voiced by Honda Takako, who previously voiced Mitarashi Anko in Naruto, Aozaki Touko in Kara no Kyokai, Irene in Fairy Tail, and others. those are just 4, and the rest of the cast is great as well.
I never knew what a samisen was, but I got really interested while watching this anime! It’s obviously an old traditional instrument, but it feels really hype every time someone plays it in the anime. Umeko’s singing is also impressive. It’s a really cool way to learn about that style of music, and we can look forward to Setsu improving and mastering his own style. Studio Shin-Ei Animation is delivering a quality adaptation to this manga, and we have a lot to look forward to in the following weeks.
“Mashiro no Oto” (Those Snow White Notes) anime currently has 3 episodes available, and you can watch it on Crunchyroll. It’s definitely not an anime you should sleep on, more so if you enjoy sports anime and/or music ones! In addition, if you agree it’s one of the best shows, you can vote for it to rank higher this week on our weekly poll!
All images via Crunchyroll