supercell (written without capitalization as often as with) is a Japanese pop/rock band that formed in 2007 which owes much of its popularity to Vocaloid, and to which we owe the existence of Black★Rock Shooter as the franchise is known today. The band's leader, Ryo, is both the songwriter and producer; the ten other members of the band are illustrators and graphic artists who produce PVs, art, and booklets. supercell has no official vocalist; its songs have thus far all been sung by Hatsune Miku or freelance singers: most notably Yanagi Nagi (who made her debut on Nico Nico Douga under the pseudonym "Gazelle"), Koeda, and Chelly (as EGOIST).
Ryo and supercell's debut was the Vocaloid smash hit "Melt", a simple love song about a shy girl walking together with the boy she has a crush on. It was first released over Nico Nico Douga in 2007, and has since become considered one of the songs which has established Miku's commonly perceived personality. It was followed up by several more releases, and as supercell gained more attention, they signed a record deal with Sony Music Entertainment. Since their self-titled Vocaloid album, most of their releases have been performed by Nagi, and she is set to be the vocalist for their second album.
supercell and Nagi have provided theme music for several extremely popular anime and games since their debut, among them Bakemonogatari, Cencoroll, and Nasuverse visual novel Mahoutsukai No Yoru. Their Vocaloid song "Kocchi Muite Baby" was used as the opening for the second Project Diva Vocaloid rhythm game. Ryo also composed "Braveheart", the theme of the Black★Rock Shooter OVA, although it is performed by a different band.
Nico Nico Douga broadcasts
- "Melt" (December 2007), a song about a shy girl trying to gather the courage to confess her feelings.
- "Koi wa Sensou", or Eager Love (February 2008), which addresses the need to never give up on love. The kanji title means "love is War", but "Eager Love" is the official English title.
- "World Is Mine" (May 2008), a song from the perspective of an extremely selfish and spoiled girl trying to appeal to a boy she likes by considering him her prince and demanding that she be treated as a princess in return. The singer is infamously considered to be from the perspective of a Tsundere.
- "Black★Rock Shooter" (June 2008), which Ryo wrote after being inspired by fellow member huke's illustrations of the eponymous lead character of his original story. Its popularity exploded, to say the least.
- "Hajimete no Koi ga Owaru Toki (When My First Love Ends)" (December 2008), a melancholy song that is Exactly What It Says on the Tin. The band's last song uploaded to Nico Nico Douga, until 2016.
- "Tsumi no Namae (Name of the Sin)" (June 2016), uploaded after a long hiatus from the band on NND, is about a girl cursed by the Goddess of Fate to have a monstrous appearance, but eventually finding solace in a friendship with a blind boy. Currently the last song supercell has uploaded to Nico Nico Douga.
- "Kimi no Shiranai Monogatari" (August 2009). The first collaboration between supercell and Nagi, after which it was decided that Nagi would provide vocals for their second album. The title track is the ending theme for Bakemonogatari, in which the singer reminisces over and regrets not pursuing an old love. The b-side, "LOVE&ROLL", is used in Cencoroll, and depicts an adventurous girl and her shy boyfriend embarking on Their First Time.
- "Sayonara Memories" (February 2010). The second single featuring Nagi. The title track shares themes with "Kimi no Shiranai Monogatari".
- "Utakata Hanabi / Hoshi ga Matataku Konna Yoru ni" (2010). A double a-side single. "Utakata Hanabi" was used as one of the ending themes for Naruto: Shippuden, "Hoshi ga Matataku Konna Yoru ni" was used as the main theme of Mahou Tsukai no Yoru.
- "Kocchi Muite Baby / yellow" (July 2010). A collaboration single between supercell and livetune, and the first single to feature Hatsune Miku. "Kocchi Muite Baby" is used in Project DIVA 2nd, and fans have noted its similarities to "World Is Mine". The single contains a remix of "Black Rock Shooter" using the beta version of Miku Append's soft voicebank.
- "Sekiranun Graffiti / Fallin' Fallin' Fallin'" (August 2011). A collaboration single between supercell and Dixie Flatline. Features Miku. "Sekiranun Graffiti" was used as the theme song of Project DIVA Extend. An animated short PV of Sekiraun Graffiti is available to watch on NicoNico Douga.
- "My Dearest" (November 2011). A song sung to a friend to reassure them that even if the entire world turns against them, the narrator will never waver. The single features a new lead singer—Koeda, and the title track is the opening for Guilty Crown.
- "Departures (Anata ni Okuru Ai no Uta)" (2011). Guilty Crown's ED single, featuring Chelly as "EGOIST", named after the fictional band in Guilty Crown.
- "ODDS&ENDS / Sky of Beginning" (2012). A collaboration between supercell and Jin. "ODDS&ENDS" was used as the theme song for Project DIVA F. ODDS&ENDS had a PV released by Sony Entertainment on youtube.
- "Namae no Nai Kaibutsu" (2012): Psycho-Pass' 1st ED single, again under the name EGOIST.
- "Gin'iro Hikousen" (2012): Used as the opening for the movie Nerawareta Gakuen.
- "The Bravery" (2013): Contains the ED for Magi: The Labyrinth of Magic, a song about never giving up and doing your best.
- "All Alone With You" (2013): Second ED for Psycho-Pass and sung by EGOIST as well.
- "hakushu kassai utaaawse" (2013): Used as the OP for Katanagatari's rerun.
- "Fallen" (2014): Ending for Psycho-Pass 2 and sung by EGOIST.
- RELOADED (2015): Contains the ending themes for the three Project ITOH movie adaptations, all sung by EGOIST:
- "Kabaneri Of The Iron Fortress" (2016). Opening song for Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress which is sung by EGOIST.
- "Eiyū: Unmei no Uta" (2017). Opening song for Fate/Apocrypha which is sung by EGOIST.
- "supercell feat. Hatsune Miku" (March 2009): This album contains all the Vocaloid songs that supercell released over Nico Nico Douga along with several new tracks.
- "Today Is A Beautiful Day" (March 2011): The band's first album with Nagi as their vocalist. Contains all the A-side songs from Nagi's singles, as well as eight new songs.
- "Extra terrestrial Biological Entities" (Sept 2012, as EGOIST): First album with Chelly as the vocalist. Features all the Guilty Crown A-sides' songs and some new tracks.
- "Zigaexperientia" (Nov 2013): First album with Koeda as the vocalist. Contains all the A-side songs from Koeda's singles, as well as a few original songs.
- "Greatest Hits 2011-2017 "Alter Ego"" (Dec 2017): Compilation album of EGOIST. Contains all the songs made from the band.
supercell's music provides examples of the following tropes:
- Anime Theme Song: They're a popular pick for original compositions for the Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA franchise. Four of the series' titles have featured their music as a theme, and many others make it into the games regardless.
- Blind and the Beast: In "Tsumi no Namae", the protagonist is cursed with having a monstrous appearance and is viciously bullied for it. However, a blind boy defends her from her bullies and eventually befriends her, seeing her for her personality instead. The Goddess of Fate gives the boy the ability to see again, but he still reciprocates the protagonist's love for him because he knows she's a good person at heart. This lifts the curse, allowing her to live with a normal appearance.
- Fake Band: EGOIST. First featured as an in-universe band in Guilty Crown, but eventually all singles and albums with chelly as the vocalist have been released under this name, most of them featuring Guilty Crown 's female protagonist Inori, even in singles not related to the anime.
- Genre Shift: "Tsumi no Namae" is very different from previous supercell's songs, possessing a more whimsical background track and relying heavily on a fairytale motif that tells a self-contained story rather than speaking to themselves/someone. However, it is still ultimately a love song.
- Jerkass Gods: In "Tsumi no Namae", the Goddess of Fate curses the song's protagonist for the sake of a cheap laugh. This is lampshaded later in the song, with the protagonist calling the Goddess cruel.
- Undying Loyalty: Miku displays this towards ryo in "ODDS&ENDS", sticking by him even as he starts to succumb to Creator Backlash toward her and refusing to let anyone hurt him again. It all pays off in the end when he overcomes his backlash and "reunites" with her.
- Unreliable Narrator: The singer of "Eager Love" spends the entire song talking about how frustrating her relationship is and how her beau barely notices how much effort she puts in, then in the last few lines she says she was kidding and that love is blind.