An anime opening about Singapore Trains?

You may have recently seen a post about someone combining clips of the North South and East West MRT Lines (NSEWL) synced to the opening music of Girls und Panzer.

This person is none other than one of our SGTrains team member, Brian Ngauw. Brian has been a train enthusiast for almost 9 years now, and his other hobby involves watching and discussing about Japanese anime. We had a short question and answer to learn more about him in person!

What is the video all about, and what inspired you to make that video?
This PV features trains from the NSEWL moving to the beat of the song Dreamriser. Now more famously known to most people as the SMRT anime, this video tries to bring out our trains daily operations in views which people generally don’t tend to look at our trains from. The inspiration of the video came after watching various 鉄道PVs on Youtube, mostly featuring a particular line or railway company in Japan, and I thought, why not try doing something equivalent for Singapore’s network? This led to the long journey of the initial song selection, the recce of locations where scenes can be shot, and the “storyboard” for the video project. I did create a “TV size” version, a 1 minute 30 seconds long version typically used in the actual anime opening, to test the water before deciding on creating the full 4-minute version. One of the few popular 鉄道PVs uploaded onto YouTube.

What is it about trains that inspired you to become a train enthusiast?
One of the things that got me interested was the sounds produced during the trains’ acceleration and deceleration, known affectionately as motor sounds, which range from low pitched hums to musical tones and vary with different models of trains. This curiosity led me to read more about the different systems used in trains, and it progressively built up into the love that I have now for this hobby!

What are some of the places in the video that you feel is the best angle to snap the NSEWL?
The scenes and angles in this video are pretty limited and feature mostly Ang Mo Kio and Tanah Merah stations. My next upcoming PV will feature more locations, and it does include my personal favourite spot near Bukit Gombak! If I do have to make a choice though, it would be at Tanah Merah!

Is there something about Girls und Panzer that captures your attention, and to use that anime’s opening instead of other anime?
While my choice to Girls und Panzer may have been biased since it was a favourite of mine, I had compared other songs to Dreamriser during the selection process, and those were STRAIGHT JET (Infinite Stratos), LEVEL 5 -judgelight- (A Certain Scientific Railgun), and GO! GO! MANIAC (K-On!!). Ultimately I chose Dreamriser as it had an easier tempo to work with, and was much easier to fit scenes in as compared to the other 3 songs.

Out of all the animes that you have watched, which are your favourite one, and another that you would recommend?
While Girls und Panzer still lives as one of my favourite anime to date, I would say my favourite would be Sound! Euphonium, an anime about a group of girls and their journey in the school’s concert band club to bring them to qualify in the national concert band competition. The show brought me to explore Uji City in Kyoto personally twice, as well as to catch a concept train made specially for a collaboration with the anime!


If you’ve missed one of our videos last year, we did something similar to a railway PV too! Technically, it’s a PV for the launch of the Circle Line route and train add-ons for the openBVE train simulator a year ago. Check it out below!

 

Matthew Ng

An avid train enthusiast since 2009, he designs graphics and infographics to promote the little known facts about Singapore's train network.