Finding Music Like Persona 5 for Streaming, Videos & Podcasts
Persona 5 is the latest chapter in the popular Japanese video game series. Its soundtrack lives up to the funkadelic legacy of previous Persona games, featuring over 110 tracks.
The sixth installment in Atlus’ RPG franchise boasts some of the grooviest tracks to date, composed by the company's long term in-house music wizard, Shoji Meguro.
If you want to add a bit of Persona character to your own projects, you will need to try making your own music, looking for public domain tracks in anime playlists on Spotify, or browsing our royalty-free premium music library Music Cellar for a flavour to suit your taste. Why? Because, like so much of commercial modern music today, the soundtrack is protected by copyright!
Let’s talk about what went into making the Persona 5 music, and why it is loved by so many across the world today.
The soundtrack contains a few different styles of music, and Meguro mixes many influences together to create a refreshing and unique musical aesthetic that complements the theme and pace of the game.
The music in Persona 5 contains stylistic elements of jazz, funk, disco, soul, hip-hop, and pop. There is also the occasional song that references more aggressive genres like rock, hard-rock and dubstep.
There is a Vaporwave-esque feel throughout, with a colourful, hyperactive, and almost cartoon-ish reimagining of traditional contemporary musical styles. The soundtrack is upbeat, exciting, and positive, with a sense of continual motion and action. It isn’t static or ambient, instead it has a driving sound with danceable rhythms and beats which keep the player immersed and entertained.
There are hints of tension, but more the kind of tension that is created by drinking five coffees, rather than anything overly dark and unsettling.
The instrumentation in the tracks points towards fairly traditional idioms of jazz and funk, using standard components like drums, bass, organs, guitars, horns, and vocals – but Persona 5 presents them with a modernised aesthetic.
The soundtrack takes the ideas of traditional jazz music from the 1950s onwards and augments them with layers of modern production techniques and sound design. All of the individual elements are mashed up to leave the soundtrack sounding like a cross between an 80s cop movie on VHS and a Saturday night in a jazz club.
The compositional techniques and theoretical approach revolve around fairly standard contemporary jazz, rock and pop frameworks. There are plenty of jazzy chord extensions, meaning ninths, elevenths and a lot of funky sevenths. This is typical of the jazz genre, with chord progressions regularly revolving around extensions and altered variants.
Rhythmically, the music is relatively simple. Most tracks are in a 4/4 meter, which lends itself well to the trance nature of video games, with medium to fast tempos to keep the pace. Some tracks are more swinging, taking inspiration from hip-hop and neo-soul grooves.
Acid jazz – also known as “club jazz” – is a mutated form of jazz music influenced by hip-hop, funk, soul, and disco. The term was first used by broadcaster and record label owner Gilles Peterson, who saw the effect of electronic genres like acid house and breakbeat on jazz influenced DJs and producers.
Songs were being released that took samples from old jazz records and mixed them with electronic elements like sequenced drums and synthesisers. The arrangements were also modified to be longer and more repetitive, borrowing from trance, techno, and house, for better dance-floor performance. Many acid jazz songs have soulful vocal sections too.
Here are a few examples of classic acid jazz artists and albums:
- ”Six Pack“ – The Apostles
- “The Ghetto” – Jestofunk Feat. Ce Ce Rogers & Fred Wesley
- St Germain
- “Pentatonic” – Soul Jazz Unit
The Persona 5 soundtrack certainly has acid jazz tracks in it, although not all of the music fits explicitly into the genre. The influence of traditional jazz music is obvious, but it is electrified by modern techniques and more contemporary arrangements.
You can find jazz, funk, pop, hip-hop and many more genres on Music Cellar, so start your subscription today – it’s free
Video game soundtracks have become a musical force in their own right, and game developers often spend large amounts of their budgets on creating them.
Aside from using soundtracks in the games themselves, they can also be sold or streamed as separate OST albums, both to please the fans and to bring in some extra revenue. Video game albums can be iconic to some people, and in some cases the quality of the music is good enough for it to be enjoyed separately from the game it belongs to.
The Persona 5 soundtrack is on Spotify. It is important to state again though that the music is copyrighted, meaning it can’t be redistributed or broadcast without a license. Uploading or streaming the tracks on YouTube or Twitch will count as a copyright violation, and can result in different penalties on each platform.
This is often the case with video game soundtracks on Spotify, so be careful, and check out our guide to finding royalty free music.
The game’s music was written by a varied group of composers and musicians.
As mentioned previously, the soundtrack was primarily composed by Shoji Meguro, who has written music for Atlus’ video games since 1995. Shoji was assisted by composers Toshiki Konishi, Kenichi Tsuchiya, Atsushi Kitajoh and Ryota Kozuka, who also wrote and contributed to songs for the project. Vocals were performed by jazz-soul singer Lyn Inaizumi, who is known professionally simply as Lyn.
The game is relatively open-ended, with different narratives and consequences that depend on the player’s choices, and this required the writers to come up with a large selection of different tracks to cover all the potential feelings and moods of the story.
The translated liner notes of the album give a glimpse into the process and thoughts of the composers as they worked through the project.
It’s ultimately a matter of personal taste, but there are a few arguments to be made for which Persona game has the best soundtrack.
Going by all the measurables, Persona 5’s soundtrack is undoubtedly Atlus’ biggest hit, possessing the most plays and likes on Spotify. Mainstream popularity is not the only yardstick for quality however, and Persona 4 has recently been re-released on digital distribution service Steam, making it a good place to start if you want to find out for yourself!
If Persona’s eclectic mix of sounds has left you feeling inspired, why not have a browse through our range of music production software to find new ways of channeling your creativity. With our award-winning audio repair bundle ERA 5, recording pristine vocals like Lyn is within your reach too, as tools like De-Esser, Plosive Remover and De-Clipper are at hand to help optimise all your audio.
Or, if you want to skip making the music altogether and are looking for free tracks to use in your content, check out Music Cellar, our library of high quality royalty-free music. As always, remember to subscribe to our blog for more articles like this!