The third wave of artists to perform at this year’s ROCK IN JAPAN FESTIVAL has just been announced. Among them is B’z, who will perform on August 5th. For the band, this marks the second festival appearance of the year, followed by the appearance at the RISING SUN ROCK FESTIVAL in EZO on August 11th. B’z is making an appearance at both festivals for the first time—possibly with the goal to expand their fanbase.
In the past, B’z has performed at festivals like SUMMER SONIC in 2007 and 2009. These two festivals gave fans a first glimpse at “SUPER LOVE SONG” and “MY LONELY TOWN” respectively, before they got its physical release. In more recent years, the band has performed at the TV Asahi Dream Festival in 2011 and 2015. A special festival was conducted together with American rock band Aerosmith in 2013, called AEROSONIC.
This long-overdue redux of the site was built from the ground up as a central hub of B’z information. We wanted to re-purpose the site to more resemble what we felt would be the ultimate B’z resource, and in combination with our continued efforts on the B’z Wiki, we hope you will agree! The all-new OFF THE LOCK intends to bring you more features, more videos, more translations, and more up-to-date, original B’z content than ever before. To begin, we would like to introduce you to a core feature on this new version of the site: Daily B’z.
Introducing Daily B’z
Daily B’z utilizes our repository of B’z information, photographs, translations, and more in order to provide new curated content every day from here on—in fact, you can see the first entry for May 24th, 2017, live on the sidebar right now! You may also rest assured that no combination of content will ever be repeated for Daily B’z. Not only will we be constantly adding new Daily Photos, Lyrics of the Day, Today’s Featured B’z Wiki Articles, and of course any releases and happenings in the B’z world to This Day in B’z History, we have already arranged thousands of entries that will cycle through independently each and every day from here on. That means, of course, that May 24th this year won’t in any way resemble May 24th of 2018, and never again will any of the current Daily Photo, Lyrics of the Day, This Day in B’z History, or Today’s Featured B’z Wiki Article share the same space again.
Daily B’z will automatically update every day at 12:00 noon CET for Europeans and 6 AM EST for the Eastern U.S. so be sure to check what all we have in store!
Navigation & Features
Foremost, you will see that we have greatly streamlined the general navigation of the site. The top-bar will now direct you to relevant pages on the B’z Wiki and we have plans to offer various media in a dedicated section in the future. Additionally, we have now added a specially-chosen Featured Article that will change roughly every week.
We have also overhauled our categorization and tagging systems. The entire past decade of reporting, articles, videos, and translations have all been re-organized to make navigating the archive of B’z news simpler and more efficient. You will see on the home page’s News Archive section that these are all now navigable by year and topic, which we hope is an improvement over past efforts. Likewise, you will see that we have added External Links to outside B’z sources and a Where To Buy section for the common question as to where B’z items may be purchased. This also includes an up-to-date listing of all the B’z and solo output available digitally worldwide on iTunes with direct links to each.
You will see that we have specially-designed icons for our different categories as well to help differentiate each:
Mobile Version & Optimization
One feature we have often neglected in the past is a mobile version of OFF THE LOCK. Mobile browsing has become increasingly important in the near-decade since the site was launched, and we have decided to make it a focus to create a mobile-centric version in the near future. You can view a preview to the right of its current state. We expect OTL Mobile to be available in the near future and will be sure to post an update when you it is nearing completion. Similarly, we are still working on optimizing the current design for multiple browsers and setups. Naturally, we welcome any feedback you may have already!
In addition to the many other changes and us migrating to a newer, faster server, we have also revitalized our back catalogue of uploaded content. Virtually every video we have translated for the site over the years has been restored in its original quality and for those few that are missing, we are aiming to have them back where they belong in a matter of days. Similarly, we likewise will be enabling comments on all articles from 2008 to now as we once did, instead of closing them after a set time. This policy was originally adopted as an anti-spam measure, but if you now have thoughts on older posts or videos that you come across whilst exploring the archive, feel free to chime in as you see fit.
We are hopeful that this new version of OFF THE LOCK will be a valuable resource for B’z fans and one that you believe best exemplifies what you want from B’z coverage as a fellow fan. If you have any comments, suggestions, or questions, let us know in the comments! Stay tuned for further updates!
We now have the official cover to “Seimei/Still Alive” a few weeks ahead of its release, which is available for pre-order on CD Japan, YesAsia, and Amazon.co.jp in any of its three editions. The sleek black and purple cover plays up the motif of the second A-side:
Additionally, the logo for B’z SHOWCASE 2017 -B’z In Your Town- has been made available on the official website ahead of its July start:
Long-term fans may recognize that the logo shares elements with the 2009 SHOWCASE of the same moniker. This year’s SHOWCASE is the first of its kind not associated with an album or Pleasure tour in eight whole years. In the past, such SHOWCASES have led to the inclusion of numerous long-requested B-sides and fan-favorites in their setlists. The only full show of its kind released on home video is B’z SHOWCASE 2007 -19- which included performances of: “HOT FASHION -Ryuukoukata-“, “Naite Naite Nakiyandara“, “Gin no Tsubasa de Tobe“, “Haru“, “Nagai Ai“, “Out Of Control“, “ARIGATO” in its only live showing, and “Odekake Shimasho“.
The same year’s SHOWCASE 2007 -B’z In Your Town- tour that sadly was not similarly released also included “The Loose“, “ROCK man“, “HOME“, “Aikawarazu na Bokura“, “Magnolia“, and “GO★FIGHT★WIN“. The 2009 B’z In Your Town SHOWCASE even included “Crazy Rendezvous“, “VAMPIRE WOMAN“, “MY SAD LOVE“, “THE GAMBLER“, and “Kirei na Ai Jyanakutemo“.
With only a few weeks until the launch of the 52nd B’z single, promotions for “Seimei/Still Alive” are now underway. Foremost, Music Station aired our first glimpse at the music video to “Still Alive” that will be included in the CD & DVD packages of the release. According to the segment, the band’s concept for the video was “Beginnings”. We’ve preserved the brief clip below:
Next, the commercial for the single hit television Saturday evening with even more footage:
The two year wait for the return of B’z will soon be over: Today, with the third countdown ending on the official website, the band have announced the first of their new releases and it’s a big one! The single will be a double A-side (their third and first since 2009’s mega hit “Ichibu to Zenbu/DIVE“) coupling an all-new song entitled “Seimei” with the previously sampled “Still Alive” from the hit TBS Drama A LIFE that aired from January to March. “Seimei” (声明, Declaration) will serve as a tie-in to a promotional campaign for UCC Black’s line of canned coffees beginning with a commercial set to air starting June 12th: just two days prior to the single’s release on the 14th.
What’s more, the single contains four-tracks, making it the band’s biggest standard single to date! The third beat is last year’s digital single “Sekai wa Anata no Iro ni Naru” (世界はあなたの色になる) that served as the theme song to Detective Conan: The Darkest Nightmare for its theatrical run and later appeared as the opening theme to the corresponding anime series. The release is rounded out by the physical debut of “Fukiarenasai” (フキアレナサイ) which was previously made available for digital purchase last November to correspond with it serving as the theme song to the film Shippu Rondo.
The single will be available in three editions: CD, CD+DVD with all-new music video for “Still Alive“, and a “B’z x UCC Black” CD package including a decorative coaster set and a lottery card that offers the chance to be one of 10,000 to win a set of B’z-themed cans of UCC Black. More can be seen on the special campaign site simultaneously opened to commemorate the announcement.
You can expect all four songs to be performed during B’z SHOWCASE 2017 -B’z In Your Town- when it kicks off in Kumamoto on July 13th. A fourth countdown is currently ticking on the official website with no determinate end date as of yet, so stay tuned for the next big update and our first glimpse of “Seimei“!
B’z New Single
2. Still Alive
3. Sekai wa Anata no Iro ni Naru
Bonus DVD: 「Still Alive」 Music Video
Price: 1,620 Yen (CD Only), 1,998 Yen (CD+DVD), 2,160 Yen (“B’z x UCC Black” Edition, CD+Goods)
Pre-order CD-Only Edition:
Pre-order CD+DVD Edition:
Pre-order “B’z x UCC” CD Package Edition:
B’z have recently posted confirmation on their social media channels that they are currently underway recording their next release. This is further evidenced by the latest issue of the Be With! fanclub magazine in which Tak revealed that he will get together with Koshi to start pre-production in April. As has been the case in the past, the duo are working at their studio in Hawaii for the time being. If the past is any indication, further recording at their studios in Los Angeles and Tokyo should be imminent. There are currently no details on their upcoming releases other than they will presumably be performing some of their new output at B’z SHOWCASE 2017 -B’z In Your Town- which is scheduled to begin in July.
Interestingly, the year has thus far resembled their activities in 2007. In May, B’z released “Eien no Tsubasa” with notable B-side “Lonely Stars“. Just prior, they announced SHOWCASE 2007 -19- which began in late June. This was followed immediately thereafter by SHOWCASE 2007 -B’z In Your Town- which ran from July to August, just as its 2017 counterpart will. Both tracks from the single were performed during the pair of summer SHOWCASES. The band also made a festival appearance at SUMMER SONIC 07 in mid August, just as they will with the RISING SUN ROCK FESTIVAL this year. In October, “SUPER LOVE SONG” was released with ACTION following in December as their 16th studio album. This led to the year-long tour of LIVE-GYM 2008 “ACTION” that began in January and culminated in the unforgettable twentieth anniversary stand LIVE-GYM Pleasure 2008 -GLORY DAYS-.
Other than the early start for SHOWCASE -19- in 2007, the years appear at least somewhat similar thus far. It would make sense for B’z to hold their new album until fall and release a comeback single here in the spring that can be included in their summer showings. Time will tell, keep checking back for the latest updates!
B’z has today announced their first “B’z in Your Town” SHOWCASE in eight years. Their last one dates back to 2009, in which they performed at eight venues as part of B’z SHOWCASE 2009 -B’z In Your Town-. The 2017 SHOWCASE is not meant as a warmup gig for an upcoming tour, but is rather meant to bring B’z to remote locations to perform in small hall venues. As such, tickets are highly limited.
For the first time, there will be two rounds of ticket lotteries: Fanclub exclusive and CLUB-GYM exclusive. The fanclub exclusive ticket lottery will accept entries from May 1st to May 15th, while CLUB-GYM members can enter the CLUB-GYM exclusive ticket lottery from June 1 to June 11. Results of the ticket lottery are to be announced on May 23rd for fanclub members and June 17th for CLUB-GYM members.
B’z SHOWCASE 2017 -B’z In Your Town-
SS Ticket (Fanclub only): 14,000 Yen
S Ticket: 10,000 Yen
Standing (CLUB-GYM only): 10,000 Yen
July 13 — Kumamoto Prefectural Theater
July 18 — Shunanshi Bunka Hall
July 20 — Fukuyama Hall of Arts and Culture Reed & Rose (Big Hall)
July 22 — Tsuyama Cultural Center
July 23 — Toyonaka Performing Arts Center (Big Hall)
July 26 — Biwako Concert Hall (Big Hall)
July 28 — Honda no Mori Hall
August 1 — Hachinohe City Public Hall (Big Hall)
August 3 — Sakura Hall
August 7 — Tomakomai City Hall
August 9 — Wakannai Cultural Center
Two weeks following the initial reveal of B’z making an appearance at the RISING SUN ROCK FESTIVAL 2017 for the first time, the second countdown has finally been given an exact date to count down to: April 25th, 2017 at noon. The date seems to coincide with the announcement of the first wave of artists performing at the WILD BUNCH FEST 2017. WILD BUNCH FEST takes place on August 19 and 20 at the Yamaguchi Kirara Memorial Park — one week after their appearance at the RISING SUN ROCK FESTIVAL 2017.
Two further random countdowns have been added to the website’s splash page, teasing two upcoming announcements.
Just this moment, more information on the alleged “CLUB-GYM” was released. It is, in fact, not a tour of some sort, but rather a website, which dedicates itself to bring information to people who would like to know more about B’z, or haven’t been able to go to a show because tickets were sold out.
This includes information such as where and how to obtain tickets as well as information on upcoming performances, releases and live tours. The website will provide an e-mail newsletter containing said information.
The start date of the “Club-Gym” website is to be announced soon.
The “Club-Gym” is different from the official fanclub B’z PARTY, which is meant for people who want to support B’z. Perks such as fanclub-exclusive events, ticket lotteries and a chance to meet&greet with the band are exclusive to members of B’z PARTY.
It has just been revealed that B’z will appear at the RISING SUN ROCK FESTIVAL 2017 to be held in Hokkaido at a special outdoor site of the Tarukawa Wharf in Otaru city near Sapporo. The festival is to be held on August 11th and August 12th, 2017. The day B’z is going to be performing will be announced in the near future.
Fans have expected more of the first announcement, but it clearly shows that B’z is gearing up for a couple of live shows this year! As for the CLUB-GYM, dates are probably going to be announced with the B’z PARTY website renewal, which has now been pushed back. The renewed website is now set to go live sometime between mid and end of April. Further information is expected to come with the new Be With! issue coming in the next weeks.