Haha, where yo classics at, guys? Some of this newer stuff is hot though, for sure, particularly both of the Railgun OPs (and Be My Friend was a great ED), Angel Beats OP (best OP this year, from what I have seen), both of Durarara's OPs (second one grew on me quite a bit), and obviously the Bakemonogatari ED.
My list woop woop, with descriptions/explanations/etc:
- Yoko Kanno and the Seatbelts - Cowboy Bebop - Undeniably the best anime OP of all time. Every bit of it kicks ass. The avant-garde silhouette animation style fits the slick, hard-hitting feel of the show to a tee, and it's just plain fun. The composition in some of the shots is just amazing, too. The song? Do I really need to say anything?
- Origa - Ghost in the Shell: 2nd Gig - Amazing, pumped tune that just fits the cyberpunk energy of the series perfectly. Origa's vocals are top notch as ever, and Yoko Kanno's composition is unsurprisingly stellar. The fast-paced animation is synchronized very well with the tune. The animation itself is superb, too. Inner Universe is also exceptional, but I'd put Rise over it any day.
Spoiler: Ghost in the Shell: 2nd Gig
3. "Cruel Angel's Thesis"
- Yoko Takahashi - Neon Genesis Evangelion - A classic, and a truly unique one at that. Eurobeat-esque synths work well enough here, even if they feel dated haha. The vocals are great. Much like the series itself, still shots are used powerfully throughout the OP(the text stills get me to this day). As the 1:30ish cut of the tune climaxes, the stills get more and more frenetic, albeit synchronized perfectly with the tune. Unique, awesome OP to a unique, awesome series.
Spoiler: Neon Genesis Evangelion
4. "Tori no Uta"
- Lia - Air TV - Song is soo good and has been for a long time haha. Shockingly beautiful vocals. The animation is alright here, the character-introduction-esque intro undeniably fits the galge feel here.
5. "Love (Loyalty)"
- The Excel Girls - Excel Saga - Such a classic, hilarious OP. It really goes without saying that this song fits the show marvelously lmao. The song is really awesome, from Hyatt's coughing to banana related crooning. The call/response stuff works so well. Such a classic, goddamn.
6. "Back Alley Space Boy"
- The Cobra Twisters - Dai-Guard - Possibly the catchiest song in the history of catchy songs.
7. "Yuusha-oh Tanjou"
- Masaaki Endoh - King of Braves Gao Gai Gar - Amazing, epic opening. Endoh kills it here. You talk about OPs that get you pumped, this is what you talk about. The animations is admittedly a little dated, your classic mecha fare, but man, shit is so hype.
- bôa - Serial Experiments Lain - Given the cyberpunk/technobabble essence of this series, you might expect something a little more, uh, electronic? But this tune, alt-rock/English vocals, turns that idea on its head and really delivers. It's definitely a unique song for an anime OP. It's a very emotional tune, and I really like the vocals. The animation fits the detached, oft-creepy feel of the show, and the opening static is equally appropriate.
Spoiler: Serial Experiments Lain
9. "Bouken Desho Desho?"
- Aya Hirano - The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya - Nice song here, Aya's vocals are great. The animation is really exceptional; extremely detailed stuff. The colorful rectangle stuff is fun and pop-arty and really nice from a composition standpoint. Memorable OP.
Spoiler: The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya
10. "Kimi no Shiranai Monogatari"
- supercell - Bakemonogatari - grooving supercell, man, grooving supercell. Everything about this song is catchy and awesome as tits: the vocals, the guitar riffs, the piano, the climaxes/crescendos, everything. The animation is also really cool.
11. "Gun's & Roses"
- Paradise Lunch - Baccano! - Really cool jazzy opening. It's probably a little demeaning to call this "the Poor Man's Tank!" but in a way it kinda fits that description haha. The animation is awesome, probably some of my favorite from an OP ever. The character introduction style is well done here. The tune fits the energy of the series to a T.
12. "My Soul, Your Beats!"
- Lia - Angel Beats! - More Lia gold. Such a beautiful song, my god. The piano work is amazing. Stunning animation/style that fits the eroge feel perfectly. grooving Tenshi is too kawaiiiiiiii.
13. "The Sore Feet Song"
- Ally Kerr - Mushishi - Really chill tune (another one in English, interestingly enough) that fits the traveler's feel of the show awesomely. The acoustic guitar stuff is so chill. Animation-wise: really really simple, but fitting.
14. "Modokashii Sekai no Ue de"
- Makino Yui - Welcome to the NHK - Yeyeye another ED on the list. I'd compare this song to Kimi no Shiranai Monogatari, actually: a lot of the same instruments, really good female vocals, brings manly (or womanly) tears to your eyes, etc. The animation itself is far from mind-blowing, but it works enough. This is mostly for the song.
- Kumiko Noma - Elfen Lied - Legendary OP right here. You talk about originality, this is what you talk about. The tune is definitely something you rarely hear in anime, and it works so well here. Hauntingly beautiful song. Gustav Klimt's "Kiss" as the motif for the animation is grooving amazing. Great stuff.
16. "Musou Ota"
- Suara - Utawarerumono - Beautiful song, amazing vocals. The full version is better (yeyeye guitar solo) but this still rocks. Nice, rich animation that instills the spirit of the original eroge.
17. "Let Me Be with You"
- ROUND TABLE ft. Nino - Chobits - Such a fun, feel-good song. The animation is cutesy and really fits the show (obviously).
18. "Uragiri no Yuuyake"
- Theatre Brook - Durarara!! - Kickass OP that gets you mega pumped. Very comparable to "Guns 'n Roses" regarding animation and character intro style. I was sad to see it go, but the second OP definitely grew on me. Good stuff all around.
- Nujabes feat. Shing02 - Samurai Champloo - I haven't even seen this series and I love this OP. Nujabes and Shing02 kick ass once again in this extremely chill tune. The animation style is really cool.
20. "Don't Say Lazy"
- Yoko Hikasa - K-ON! - Aaaand another ED on the list. Whether you like K-ON! or not, this is undeniably an amazing ED. This is a really cool song; the guitarz and the vocals are really awesome. The animation kinda steals the show here though. It helps that I have a soft-spot for rock 'n roll themed series, haha. Great stuff.
This list may change or something. I've meant to put one together for a while now, so that felt really good.