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Music / B'z

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B'z are a Japanese rock duo, consisting of guitarist, composer and producer Takahiro "Tak" Matsumoto and vocalist and lyricist Koshi Inaba, known for their energetic hard rock tracks and pop rock ballads. Born at the end of The '80s as a J-Pop band, B'z gradually became a proper Rock band during The '90s and got their recognition during this decade and the 2000s, being active until today. B'z is considered as one of the major rock bands in Japan along with Mr.Children, X Japan and Glay, as well one of the biggest rock bands in all Asia. Also, they're the first Asian band to be in Hollywood's RockWalk, induced on November 2007.

Even when they are very famous in USA, Western fans know them for their songs for various anime series (Case Closed, Hell Teacher Nube, Fist of the North Star, Black Jack), video games (Burnout, Dragon's Dogma, Yakuza and various rhythm games), TV Dorama series and even as ending songs for US series' Japanese dubs (The X-Files, The O.C.).

Their official website is this one. Not to mention they have their own wiki.

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  • Album Intro Track: Usually used as a Miniscule Rocking that starts with an epic Tak's guitar solo.
  • The Alliance: With Aerosmith, nothing less. Both bands are close friends (being Aerosmith one of Tak's influences) and often B'z makes as support band for Aerosmith's Asian tours. Recently Joe Perry has a guest appearance in the 2019's New Love album.
  • Alternative Foreign Theme Song: B'z made various themes as alternate Japanese ending songs for series and movies outside Japan, mostly from US. Some of the most known are "Love Phantom" for The X-Files (first ending), "Ore to Omae no Atarashii Kisetsu" for The O.C. and recently "Dinosaur" for Geostorm.
  • Cool Shades: Often Tak is seen with some sunglasses even in concerts.
  • Cover Version: In their concerts, they made some covers from referent bands like The Beatles, Guns N' Roses and Maroon 5. And of course, other artists made covers of B'z songs and fans made a lot too.
    • Also in Japan they have various cover/tribute bands dedicated to B'z, being some of them the bands ZERO, TOMOYURA, BROTHERHOOD, ALEPHGALD, Monster Garage and KO'z. Also, there's Z:RO, an American cover band.
  • Chromosome Casting: Apart of being a two-male band, all of the backup artists in their albums and concerts are male.
  • Female Gaze: Koshi, usually being with few (or almost nothing of) clothes in concerts and music videos.
  • Genre Roulette: B'z are a hard rock band, but also can vary into blues, rock ballads and pop songs, as well having a few orchested songs. Not to mention they started as a New Wave band in The '80s.
  • Greatest Hits Album: Since 1998 where they release the double album B'z The Best "Pleasure" and B'z The Best "Treasure" (both released with months of distance), B'z had made a lot of Greatest Hits albums, being these two and the 2004's B'z The Best "Pleasure II" the most successful compilations they made in their career.
  • Gratuitous English: Like the half of their songs have English titles and have various English lines in their lyrics. But also they made some songs completely in English without sounding in Engrish, as well some of their songs were translated into English for Western listeners.
  • Hair-Contrast Duo: Koshi has dark/black hair and Tak has blonde/light brown hair since their first appearances. And as the trope, their personalities are so different as their hair colors.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: Koshi and Tak. To be a band for more than 30 years, this is more than obvious.
  • Incredibly Long Note: Koshi is a master of this, especially live. In fact, it's pretty much a tradition for him to hold a note in the middle of their song "Juice" when played live. During their 20th anniversary, he manages to hold a note for 22 seconds.
  • Meaningful Name:
    • In an interview in 2012, they revealed the origin of the name: originally they wanted a name that encompassed since "A to Z", so the first name was A'z, but the name implication make them ditch this name and change it for B'z until today. Also, the name encompasses the names of their favourite bands and inspirations, being the B for The Beatles and the Z for Led Zeppelin.
    • Since the year one, their concerts are called as "Live-Gym", being a totally new experience of live concerts, having a frenetic Koshi moving and even running for the whole concert, being an energetic experience since the beginning to the end.
  • Mr. Fanservice: Koshi, without a doubt. Having a good-looking face, a good figure and well-marked muscles, Koshi usually appeared with skimpy clothes (or even with just a boxer short) in most of their concerts in The '90s. With the time he got more clothes, but still used stretched clothes in concerts. Even today in his 50s, Koshi still breaks hearts of the girls.
  • Older Than They Look: Koshi is in his 50s but still looks like he was 30s and is still a Mr. Fanservice even when had passed more than 30 years since he started with the band.
  • The Quiet One: Tak, who barely speaks, mostly on interviews only but in general contrasts with Koshi in that aspect.
  • Real Life Writes the Plot: The music video of "Yasei no Energy" shows Tak and Koshi in jobs they would be if they weren't a big band: Tak working in a music shop and Koshi being a school teacher, which probably were their jobs before they started with B'z.note 
  • Rearrange the Song:
    • The band's speciality. Various of their past hits usually have rearranged versions (since remixes to remake the song from scratch) in newer albums and even they translated some of them into English. The most known case is the song "Samayoeru Aoi Dangan", remade completely, sung in English, and renamed as "Into Free -Dangan-", used as part of the OST of Capcom's Dragon's Dogma.
    • Some of the singles released exclusively for the OST as "Shoudou" and "Friction" obtained reversions with more guitars in some of their albums. For example, this is the original version of Burnout Dominator/Paradise's "Friction" and this is the -LAP 2- version from 2007's Action album.
  • Self-Titled Album: Their debut was with the 1988's B'z. Also, in 2011 made a mini-album also titled as B'z for the American tour with five of their major past hits completely remade and all sung in English, which included "Into Free -Dangan-".
  • Supergroup:
    • As a side-project, Tak had his own band called "Tak Matsumoto Band" in 2004, made enterely with backup musicians for big bands and singers like Mr. Big, Whitesnake, Foreigner, Ozzy Osbourne and Billy Idol.
    • Koshi also made one in 2017 with Native American guitarist Stevie Salas making the duo Inaba/Salas and later made a tour with Miyavi and the Japanese band Made in Asia.
  • Those Two Guys: Of the Japanese rock scene.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: Koshi in the "Live-Gym" concerts, especially during The '90s and the Turn of the Millennium. See Mr. Fanservice.