OFF THE LOCK

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B'z
Studio album by B'z
Released May 21, 1989
Recorded Fall 1988 - Spring 1989
Genre Rock
Length 41:57
Label BMG Victor
Producer Masao Nakajima
B'z chronology
1st Album
01a.jpg

B'z
(1988)
2nd Album
02a.jpg

OFF THE LOCK
(1989)
3rd Album
03a.jpg

BREAK THROUGH
(1990)
Singles from B'z
  1. 02s.jpg
    Kimi no Naka de Odoritai

    Released: May 21, 1989

OFF THE LOCK is the second studio album by B'z, released on May 21, 1989. The release of the album was timed simultaneously with their second single "Kimi no Naka de Odoritai", with both of its tracks also found here. Immediately after the release of their first album, the self-titled B'z, the band returned to the studio with the goal of crafting an album in which every song would be single-worthy. The production lasted roughly 1,000 hours, which was unusual for such new artists. This was seen as a necessity by the band as there was still a great deal of growing for them to do as a unit, both in the studio and as musicians. Emerging from the sessions was the perennial live hit "OH! GIRL" which would see more performances than any other song on the album and would later be reversioned in hard rock form for B'z The "Mixture" in 2000.

The album saw the band make their first live appearances and the birth of the LIVE-GYM. The band made no live appearances prior to or following their debut, as Tak Matsumoto felt strongly that they should not hold live events until they had enough material to fill a setlist on their own. After the album was completed, the band premiered live in a special event as support for affiliated act TM Network for which Tak was a session guitarist previously. This was followed by a spate of gigs under numerous banners, including B'z LIVE-GYM #00 "OFF THE LOCK" BAD-CLUB GYM, CAMPUS-GYM "OFF THE LOCK", and LIVE-GYM #001 "OFF THE LOCK".

Almost no tracks on the album have been collected on future compilations due to a legal entanglement stemming from the band leaving their original record label BMG, who retained the master recording rights to the band's first three albums and first mini album. However, every track but the title track was collected on the unofficial 1997 compilation Flash Back -B'z Early Special Titles- without the band's express consent. Additionally, "Kimi no Naka de Odoritai" would finally be collected within the official catalogue with the 2013 release B'z The Best XXV 1988-1998 after a deal between B'z and BMG was reached.

Although the lead and only single from the album did not chart, OFF THE LOCK debuted at 33 on the Weekly Oricon Albums chart upon its release with 4,590 physical copies sold. This would be an improvement on their preceding album in terms of both sales and chart placement. With the band's later successes in 1990 with RISKY and 1991's IN THE LIFE, the album re-entered the charts and outsold numerous new releases after being the 65th highest selling of 1991 and 90th for 1992. OFF THE LOCK has since been certified Double Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of Japan with physical sales in excess of 600,000 copies. Later, in 2018, the album was reissued as a two vinyl set made available to visitors of their thirtieth anniversary public exhibition entitled "SCENES" alongside all other studio albums to that point.

Production information

With the release of their first album, B'z had their first taste of building their own sound and developing their vision of what they wanted to accomplish in music. The band were not especially concerned with the sales, however, as they had already decided they would not tour in support of the album and had a very different plan to most other new artists of the era. For their second outing, the aim was to create an album with songs that would be single-worthy.

However, this was also the most trying time for Koshi as a lyricist. In subsequent interviews, Koshi mentioned feeling like giving up at several points, but was encouraged by Tak who said his lyrics were getting better and better. Though a stressful recording process, one of which consumed nearly 1,000 total hours in and around the studio by some accounts, Koshi's resilience with the follow-up's lyrics paid off. Through the album, he was able to explore lyrical themes dealing with daily life, as well as romantic relationships and endeavors as well as its place in friendships. From the sessions, the unexpected live hit "OH! GIRL" emerged: an upbeat and optimistic pop-rock number that still frequents their live setlists to this day and is arguably their most successful of their older album tracks.

Tak drew on his previous work to create the power ballad "ROSY" that appears as the ninth track. Its melody was sourced from one of his more notable compositions from solo album Thousand Wave released the previous year. The original song, "99", was revisited and revised yet again for his sequel solo effort Wanna Go Home in 1992 after B'z had become a household name. In fact, many of the albums tracks have been reversioned within the B'z catalogue as well, including when "GUITAR KIDS RHAPSODY" was retouched as a B-side for "Itoshii Hito yo Good Night...". Two songs were recorded over entirely in English with "Kimi no Naka de Odoritai" on WICKED BEAT and "LOVING ALL NIGHT" on MARS.

The band as seen during B'z BAD-CLUB GYM, their only tour of the type in which they toured clubs for three dates.

The ten-track resulting album entitled OFF THE LOCK was released only nine months after the first on May 21, 1989. The band's second single "Kimi no Naka de Odoritai" was, as was the case with their original releases, released simultaneously. The album's title came from the idea that the work would be "removing the lock" for the band, to allow them to explore their potential as a full rock band on the live stage with nothing left holding them back. Upon release, the album debuted at number 33 on the Weekly Oricon Albums chart, ranking fifteen slots ahead of their earlier debut album. While the releases did not lead to especially great mainstream success, it did lay the foundation for their forthcoming live shows that would bring B'z to the attention of the music industry and music fans alike. It would only be a matter of months before B'z had their first major hit.

Notably, no song from the album would later be collected on a B'z compilation other than the second single due to rights issues with the band's previous label BMG. However, standouts "OH! GIRL" and "NEVER LET YOU GO" were re-recorded for B'z The "Mixture" in 2000.

Birth of the LIVE-GYM

Once recording had been completed, B'z made their debut on the live stage when they appeared at the Nemu no Sato Resort for the SF Rock Station finale event entitled "Thank You TM Network". Tak had previously served as the guitarist for TM Network prior to departing for his solo career and thus he and Koshi made their first live appearance in support. Their brief setlist of five songs included their debut single "Dakara Sono Te wo Hanashite" and its B-side "Heart mo Nureru Number ~stay tonight~" as well as debut album songs "It's not a dream" and "Half Tone Lady". Most notably, their next single was debuted as their final performance of the evening and would later become known as "Kimi no Naka de Odoritai". The song was a high-energy rock-dance song that showed the versatility they had been honing in the studio over their original efforts.

With two complete albums in the bag, the band finally felt they would be able to confidently hit the live stage and play a full show of their own material. As such, their first live tour was scheduled: B'z LIVE-GYM 00 "OFF THE LOCK", a three-date engagement at three well-known music venues from June 1 to June 5, 1988. The brief tour was to serve to test the waters but came up with very unexpectedly positive results. The three shows, in Nagoya, Osaka, and lastly Tokyo, sold out completely on the very first day tickets were made available, despite them being for a relatively new band that had not played on tour before. The regional tour was a massive success for the newly-established band, and established many of the core components that would remain intact for B'z shows decades later, including Tak playing a solo midway through the setlist. The setlist remained the same for all three shows, with "Dakara Sono Te wo Hanashite" being reserved for the one and only song played during the encore.

When its late October 1989 release arrived, "BAD COMMUNICATION" took the Japanese music world by storm. Debuting at number 12 on the Weekly Oricon Albums chart, the ranking was a twenty-one spot improvement over OFF THE LOCK. Heavy radio play brought much attention to the band, and from there their success was cemented. At the time of release, a second tour, B'z BAD-CLUB GYM, was organized as a tour of club venues that lasted three dates from mid-to-late October. The setlist was unusual in that it began with three English songs: "Bad Communication E.Style", "DA・KA・RA・SO・NO・TE・O・HA・NA・SHI・TE -OFF THE LOCK STYLE-", and "OUT OF THE RAIN -OFF THE LOCK STYLE-". Afterward, the setlist was a mix of songs from their first two albums prior to culminating in a one-song encore of the original Japanese version of "BAD COMMUNICATION".

Afterward, B'z immediately embarked on their first nationwide tour, due to increasing public demand. The tour, B'z LIVE-GYM #001 "OFF THE LOCK", saw the band performing their biggest shows to date, with a full 17-song setlist. Concurrently, a short tour entitled B'z CAMPUS-GYM "OFF THE LOCK" took place—a two-date run of college campuses and the only one of its kind in the band's history. The unexpected explosion in attention led the band to a great many more promotional opportunities than they had planned, including their first television appearance performing "BAD COMMUNICATION" on November 24, 1989 for Hit Studio Night R&N. This would be the first of several early television appearances by B'z on the program, including an encore appearance just one month later on December 15 again performing the same song.

Their work in 1989 propelled B'z to the national spotlight, with hits on all fronts, from albums to television to the live stage. While impressive on its own merits, it would not be until the following year that the band truly found their break through, when they began an unprecedented record, released their first home video, and undoubtedly changed the way that music in Japan was seen by the general public.

Track listing

All music and guitar by Tak Matsumoto. All lyrics and lead vocals by Koshi Inaba.

  1. Kimi no Naka de OdoritaiI Wanna Dance Inside You, 君の中で踊りたい
    A dance-themed song both in terms of composition and lyrics, "Kimi no Naka de Odoritai" is one of the lesser known B'z singles due to its lack of inclusion on B'z compilations in the years since their break through. An alternate version exists when it was remade in English as "I Wanna Dance Wicked Beat Style" on the band's 1990 mini album WICKED BEAT. Once a regular fixture in the band's earlier tour setlists, it is no longer routinely performed live, with the last performance coming in 2008 as part of B'z LIVE-GYM 2008 "ACTION".
  2. HURRY UP!
    As the song with the fastest tempo in the B'z catalogue, "HURRY UP!" found a natural home on the live stage and was an early live staple, having racked up over 100 performances in their first few years on the stage. Unusually for a B'z song's lyrics, the protagonist is cheering on a friend's love instead of engaging in their own. Notably, it was also performed as part of YAMAHA EXPLOSION '89, a band-centric contest at which B'z appeared. It would be revived after sixteen years for a single performance on the otherwise 53-date tour B'z LIVE-GYM 2008 "ACTION".
  3. NEVER LET YOU GO
    As one of the band's first proper ballads, "NEVER LET YOU GO" earned a special place in the B'z catalogue. Tak described it much later as "the ultimate B'z love song" while Koshi sourced the lyrics from personal relationships he had endured. This led to him noting he was "about to cry while singing" it in the studio. A hard rock reversion was prepared as a complete overhaul of the track for B'z The "Mixture" eleven years later in 2000. This version has a great deal of changes, with numerous guitar parts added and a differing arrangement. The song proved an early live staple and was heard on every date of B'z LIVE-GYM "BREAK THROUGH", B'z LIVE-GYM '90~'91 "RISKY", and B'z LIVE-GYM '91~'92 "IN THE LIFE". In later years, it has been supplanted by numerous other ballads but its influence was felt for a long while to come in shaping songs that followed.
  4. SAFETY LOVE
    Collected at the time of release as a B-side to the album's associated single, "SAFETY LOVE" was a major step forward for the band's digital sound. It offers a better blend of guitar music with the digital arrangements the band were attempting at the time and is one of the better-remembered songs from the work. The song went unplayed for two and a half decades after being included for all 41 shows of B'z LIVE-GYM "Pleasure'91". It was with the band's SHOWCASE shows of B'z SHOWCASE 2017 -B'z In Your Town- that the song was finally revived.
  5. GUITAR KIDS RHAPSODY
    One of the band's earliest rock grooves, "GUITAR KIDS RHAPSODY" is an ode to titular young people that take up guitar. Legend Jimmy Hendrix is mentioned by name in the lyrics alongside his song "Purple Haze", as is a Fender Stratocaster guitar. Later, as a B-side to single "Itoshii Hito yo Good Night..." in 1990, "GUITAR KIDS RHAPSODY CAMDEN LOCK STYLE" was featured as an extended update that was also found in music video form on FILM RISKY. In the film, the song is performed on a rooftop in London and features segments with locals performing the English backing vocals. The "CAMDEN LOCK" referred to in the title is a market area in London that the band visited in the course of filming. With a runtime of 5 minutes and 25 seconds, it became the longest B-side in their catalogue.
  6. Yoru ni FuraretemoEven If You Break Up With Me Tonight, 夜にふられても
    With its relentless uptempo, "Yoru ni Furaretemo" seemed a natural fit for the live stage. The lyrics of the song are centered around a night drive and the potential looming end of a relationship. The song was performed on the three dates of their first LIVE-GYM titled B'z LIVE-GYM 00 "OFF THE LOCK" but never again, and has never been released on home video as a result.
  7. LOVING ALL NIGHT
    A guitar-centric spin on the disco genre that was still popular at the time, "LOVING ALL NIGHT" uses guitar as its driving instrument. The song was later completely remade in English with the same lyrical theme as the original for mini album MARS, with both versions having featured rap sections. The latter version is more of a hard rock centric rendition. The original version has not been played live since B'z LIVE-GYM "BREAK THROUGH" in 1990.
  8. OH! GIRL
    Undoubtedly the most resonant of their earlier works, "OH! GIRL" proved a hit with fans in both recorded and live forms. It has been performed on nearly every Pleasure tour and occasionally appears on album tours as well, such as B'z LIVE-GYM 2008 "ACTION". The song ranked sixteenth in the fanclub polling for B'z The Best "Treasure" and was not included on the album. However, it would return to a B'z album in the form of a full hard-rock re-recording to be found on B'z The "Mixture" in 2000.
  9. ROSY
    An early attempt at a digital rhythmic groove blended with a power ballad, the melody to "ROSY" was sourced from one of Tak's earlier solo efforts. One year earlier, on his debut solo album Thousand Wave, he had released a song titled "99" that served as the basis for the track found here. The song was performed numerous times after its original release but has not been performed since being included on all 41 dates of B'z LIVE-GYM "Pleasure'91".
  10. OFF THE LOCK
    Running nearly a minute and a half, "OFF THE LOCK" at first appears an instrumental but it also has lyrics wrapping up the theme of the album. As only their second album, this would also be the first occasion in which a song was named after the album itself and is the only time such a song was used to close a B'z album. It has never been collected elsewhere, though it was performed as the opening number for the three shows that comprised "B'z LIVE-GYM #00 "OFF THE LOCK". It was then used as an Ending SE for B'z LIVE-GYM 001 "OFF THE LOCK".

Reversion history

Original Song Reversion History
Kimi no Naka de Odoritai
SINGLE & ALBUM SONG (1989)

02s.jpg 02a.jpg

ENGLISH: I Wanna Dance Wicked Beat Style (1990)
KARAOKE: Kimi no Naka de Odoritai (1992)
Karaoke version found only on B'z TV Style SONGLESS VERSION.

NEVER LET YOU GO
ALBUM SONG (1989)

02a.jpg

RE-RECORDING: NEVER LET YOU GO -Mixture style- (2000)
Hard rock reversion of the original track found only on B'z The "Mixture".

GUITAR KIDS RHAPSODY
ALBUM SONG (1989)

02a.jpg

RE-RECORDING: GUITAR KIDS RHAPSODY CAMDEN LOCK STYLE (1990)
Reversion of the song featuring elements inspired by their music video film FILM RISKY and released only as a B-side to "Itoshii Hito yo Good Night...".

LOVING ALL NIGHT
ALBUM SONG (1989)

02a.jpg

ENGLISH: Loving All Night ~Octopus Style~ (1991)
Fully English version found only on mini album MARS in 1991.

OH! GIRL
ALBUM SONG (1989)

02a.jpg

KARAOKE: OH! GIRL [Karaoke Version] (1992)
Karaoke version found only on B'z TV Style SONGLESS VERSION.
RE-RECORDING: OH! GIRL -Mixture style- (2000)
Hard rock reversion of the original track found only on B'z The "Mixture".

ROSY
ALBUM SONG (1989)

02a.jpg

KARAOKE: ROSY [Karaoke Version] (1992)
Karaoke version found only on B'z TV Style SONGLESS VERSION.

Live appearances

Live Performances

Kimi no Naka de Odoritai [105 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png SF Rock Station Final Event "Thank You TM Network" [1/1 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM #00 "OFF THE LOCK" [3/3 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z BAD-CLUB GYM [3/3 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z CAMPUS-GYM "OFF THE LOCK" [2/2 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM #001 "OFF THE LOCK" [14/14 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM "BREAK THROUGH" [22/22 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM "Pleasure'91" [41/41 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z SHOWCASE 2008 -Kiyotake ACTION- [1/1 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM 2008 "ACTION" [18/53 SHOWS]
HURRY UP! [106 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM #00 "OFF THE LOCK" [3/3 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z BAD-CLUB GYM [3/3 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z CAMPUS-GYM "OFF THE LOCK" [2/2 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM #001 "OFF THE LOCK" [14/14 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM "BREAK THROUGH" [22/22 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM '90~'91 "RISKY" [49/49 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM Pleasure'92 "TIME" [12/12 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM 2008 "ACTION" [1/53 SHOWS]
NEVER LET YOU GO [156 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM #00 "OFF THE LOCK" [3/3 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z CAMPUS-GYM "OFF THE LOCK" [2/2 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM #001 "OFF THE LOCK" [14/14 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM "BREAK THROUGH" [22/22 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM '90~'91 "RISKY" [49/49 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM '91~'92 "IN THE LIFE" [66/66 SHOWS]
SAFETY LOVE [97 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM #00 "OFF THE LOCK" [3/3 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z BAD-CLUB GYM [3/3 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z CAMPUS-GYM "OFF THE LOCK" [2/2 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM #001 "OFF THE LOCK" [14/14 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM "BREAK THROUGH" [22/22 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM "Pleasure'91" [41/41 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z SHOWCASE 2017 -Hissatsu Hiokinin- [1/1 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z SHOWCASE 2017 -B'z In Your Town- [11/11 SHOWS]
GUITAR KIDS RHAPSODY [102 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM #00 "OFF THE LOCK" [3/3 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z CAMPUS-GYM "OFF THE LOCK" [2/2 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM #001 "OFF THE LOCK" [14/14 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM "BREAK THROUGH" [22/22 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM '90~'91 "RISKY" [49/49 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM Pleasure'92 "TIME" [12/12 SHOWS]
Yoru ni Furaretemo [3 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM #00 "OFF THE LOCK" [3/3 SHOWS]
LOVING ALL NIGHT [41 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z BAD-CLUB GYM [3/3 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z CAMPUS-GYM "OFF THE LOCK" [2/2 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM #001 "OFF THE LOCK" [14/14 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM "BREAK THROUGH" [22/22 SHOWS]
OH! GIRL [187 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM #00 "OFF THE LOCK" [3/3 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z BAD-CLUB GYM [3/3 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z CAMPUS-GYM "OFF THE LOCK" [2/2 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM #001 "OFF THE LOCK" [14/14 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM "Pleasure'91" [41/41 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM Pleasure'92 "TIME" [12/12 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM Pleasure'93 "JAP THE RIPPER" [2/2 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM Pleasure'95 "BUZZ!!" [12/12 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM Pleasure 2000 "juice" [21/21 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM The Final Pleasure "IT'S SHOWTIME!!" [8/23 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM 2008 "ACTION" [23/53 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z SHOWCASE 2013 -Pleasure75- [1/1 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM Pleasure 2013 -ENDLESS SUMMER- [19/30 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z Special LIVE at EX THEATER ROPPONGI [1/1 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z SHOWCASE 2018 -The Wall Of Rock- [1/1 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM Pleasure 2018 -HINOTORI- [23/23 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z PARTY Presents B’z Pleasure in Hawaii [1/1 SHOWS]
ROSY [85 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM #00 "OFF THE LOCK" [3/3 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z BAD-CLUB GYM [3/3 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z CAMPUS-GYM "OFF THE LOCK" [2/2 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM #001 "OFF THE LOCK" [14/14 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM "BREAK THROUGH" [22/22 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM "Pleasure'91" [41/41 SHOWS]
OFF THE LOCK [3 SHOWS]
crossbracket.png B'z LIVE-GYM #00 "OFF THE LOCK" [3/3 SHOWS]

Home Videos

Kimi no Naka de Odoritai
crossbracket.png COMPLETE SINGLE BOX: LIVE-GYM "Pleasure'91"
HURRY UP! novid.png
NEVER LET YOU GO novid.png
SAFETY LOVE
crossbracket.png JUST ANOTHER LIFE: LIVE-GYM "Pleasure'91"
GUITAR KIDS RHAPSODY novid.png
Yoru ni Furaretemo novid.png
LOVING ALL NIGHT novid.png
OH! GIRL
crossbracket.png JUST ANOTHER LIFE: LIVE-GYM "Pleasure'91"
crossbracket.png "BUZZ!!" THE MOVIE
crossbracket.png LIVE-GYM Final Pleasure "IT'S SHOWTIME!!"
crossbracket.png Hidden Pleasure: LIVE-GYM Pleasure'92 "TIME"
crossbracket.png LIVE-GYM 2008 -ACTION-
crossbracket.png LIVE-GYM Pleasure 2013 -ENDLESS SUMMER- (Hall Tour)
ROSY novid.png
OFF THE LOCK novid.png

Sales data

No. Cover Album Physical Copies Sold Chart Positions Certification
FIRST WEEK LIFETIME WEEK MONTH YEAR
2 02a.jpg

OFF THE LOCK
1989.05.21

4,590+

604,700+

33

65 (1991)
90 (1992)

2x Platinum

Personnel

B'z

Support Members