One OK Rock ties up with Ed Sheeran for Rurouni Kenshin movie theme song

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One OK Rock's lead vocalist Takahiro Moriuchi (left) co-writes Renegade with Ed Sheeran. (Photo: Instagram/oneokrockofficial)
One OK Rock's lead vocalist Takahiro Moriuchi (left) co-writes Renegade with Ed Sheeran. (Photo: Instagram/oneokrockofficial)

Japanese rock band One OK Rock recently dropped their new single Renegade, which is co-written by English singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran. The English language alternative rock song also serves as the official theme song for live-action Japanese film Rurouni Kenshin: The Final, which was released in Japan on 23 April.

Renegades marks the latest collaboration between One OK Rock and Ed Sheeran, and was written at Ed Sheeran’s hometown studio in England. The band had previously supported Ed Sheeran’s 2019 Asia Tour, while the British star had joined One OK Rock onstage in Yokohama during their Japan concert tour in the same year. One OK Rock even had a studio session with Sheeran in Thailand.

“It’s just as it is, rebels,” lead vocalist Takahiro Moriuchi said when asked about the interpretation of Renegades in an interview. “We need to be rebels, we need to have a rebellious spirit, because we need “anti” in rock music. That’s rock and roll for me. Those are the kind of intention and our resolution that we are encapsulating in this song.”

Released on 16 April, the music video of Renegades has since been watched more than 2.7 million times on YouTube. The Japanese version of the music video (the same song but with Japanese subtitles) has more than 6.6 million views.

Fans are generally thrilled by the song, commenting on the video:

“This should be the theme song at Olympics Japan!”

“One OK Rock will never disappoint you.”

“This is such a masterpiece! Go Ed Sheeran! Go One OK Rock! I can’t stop listening!”

“I’m in love with this song!”

For those interested to see how Renegades was created, One OK Rock has made two behind-the-scenes videos, each about six minutes long, available on their YouTube channel.

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