Songs that soundtracked the 2020 Tokyo Olympics – from video game soundtracks to anime themes to K-pop hits

Songs that soundtracked the 2020 Tokyo Olympics – from video game soundtracks to anime themes to K-pop hits

The 2020 Tokyo Olympics pushed through with a powerful comeback after being delayed last year due to the coronavirus pandemic over the weekend.

Despite seeing a bumpy start of mishaps and controversies, the 2020 Tokyo Olympics returned with its tourneys, games, and races with a breath of hope through this year's theme 'Colorful', co-produced by Ryosuke Imai and performed by the likes of AI, Motohiro Hata, Little Glee Monster, Daichi Miura, Perfume, SHINee's Taemin, MIYAVI, Nasty C, Sabrina Carpenter, Ayumu Imazu, Blue Vintage, Mizki, Sanari, and Sing Like Talking's Chikuzen Sato.

As the Olympics welcomed four new sports in its categories of games (skateboarding included, with Japanese teenager Momiji Nishiya winning the women's street skateboarding), the event also uplifted spirits when Filipina weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz scored the Philippines' first-ever gold medal, making sports history.

All kinds of fantastic tunes helped set the mood – from video game soundtracks to anime theme songs, to K-Pop hits, here are the songs that soundtracked this year's edition of the Olympics:


VIDEO GAME SOUNDTRACKS

Music has a way of making players feel all sorts of emotions while playing, so having video game soundtracks pump up the mood at the Tokyo Olympics was a great call for a lot of people. Iconic pieces from numerous video games such as Kingdom Hearts, Final Fantasy, Sonic the Hedgehog, and the Nier series wonderfully surprised spectators from across the globe.


ANIME THEMES

What could be more fitting to soundtrack a sporting event than with anime music? This year, fans got a kick out of hearing the Slam Dunk opening theme during the opening of a basketball 3x3 event, the Haikyuu theme song filling the stadium for a volleyball match, the Attack on Titan theme releasing endorphins for archery, and the Demon Slayer to score a gymnastics competition's floor routine.


K-POP HITS

K-Pop continues its stride for world domination at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Numerous BTS tracks, including 'Dream Glow' with Charli XCX from BTS World for US Open reigning champion Naomi Osaka's tennis practice (known BTS fan and J-hope stan), 'Stay Gold,' the Japanese track co-composed by Jungkook for the synchronized 3-metre springboard final, and 'Butter' for a boxing match got fans off their seats to sing and dance in front of their screens.

EXO, who performed at the closing ceremony of the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympics, brought on 'Don't Fight The Feeling' and 'Power'.

NCT 127's 'Kick It' was aptly played during the football game, while SEVENTEEN's 'Very Nice' soundtracked the volleyball match.

A few volleyball matches this year were also soundtracked by BLACKPINK's 'Lovesick Girls', one of Bandwagon's picks for the music that shaped our 2020, and this year's K-Pop summer bop 'Alcohol-Free' by TWICE.

K-pop OGs BIGBANG were honoured at this year's Olympics as 'BANG BANG BANG' was played during the qualifying match between China’s and Turkey’s volleyball teams.

ATEEZ's Japanese single, 'Dreamers,' which also appears on anime series Digimon Adventure, and Taeyeon's 'Weekend' were played in volleyball matches.

TXT lent their first English song 'Magic' for a boxing match, while STAYC's 'ASAP' was played for a volleyball game, and ITZY's 'Don't Give A What' was played during gymnastics.

Stray Kids' 'Top,' EVERGLOW's 'DUN DUN,' and ENHYPEN's 'GIVEN-TAKEN' were also heard in volleyball matches.

The 2020 Tokyo Olympics runs from 23 July 2021 (Friday) to 8 Aug 2021 (Sunday). In the Philippines, it is broadcasted on television by TV5 and One Sports. Fans may also catch the games on Cignal Play, PLDT's Triple Play, and Smart's Gigafest website.