Credits

I would like to give credit where credit is due. Videos are from YouTube and other sources such as NicoNico while Oricon rankings and other information are translated from the Japanese Wikipedia unless noted.

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

B'z -- Alone



Amazing the things that one can learn. All these years that I've still been listening to my old 80s songs from both sides of the Pacific, and I hadn't known that there was an actual term to describe one of the biggest sound cliches in the music from that decade. You can listen to it above.


Yes, I didn't know about the term "orchestra hit". But I certainly heard it all the time in various songs, and I think the go-to tune for me was Yes' "Owner of a Lonely Heart".


When I was reading the J-Wiki article for B'z's "Alone", I read that the intro for the recorded version utilized the orchestra hit, which is how I learned of the term.

As for "Alone", B'z could make solitude or loneliness sound really cool. This was the duo's 9th single released in October 1990 with vocalist Koshi Inaba(稲葉浩志)behind the lyrics and guitarist Takahiro Matsumoto(松本孝弘)taking care of the music. According to the J-Wiki article, Matsumoto had long wanted to make a major ballad for a rock band and Inaba said that "...he had always wanted to make this type of song".


There is something very Queen and classical and maybe even regal about "Alone" as Inaba sings about a person who is alone again after the end of a relationship. I think the person is still hurting to an extent but he/she is also saying that better days are around the corner. Perhaps "Alone" has been the ideal tonic for folks at karaoke to get over heartbreak.

"Alone" is quite the fine title in terms of B'z's success at that time and right now since Inaba and Matsumoto were always at the top alone. The song was yet another No. 1 hit (for 2 weeks) as it became a Triple Platinum million seller, and found itself the 10th-ranked single of the year. A year later at the end of 1992, it would still rank at No. 56. "Alone" was also a track on B'z's 5th original album, "In The Life", which came out in November 1991. Not surprisingly, it was also a No. 1 hit, the 2nd-biggest selling album for 1992 and the 77th-ranked album for 1993, and sold over 2 million copies.

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