“ Artist: Balzac / Genre: Hard Rock & Metal / Label: Disc Union / Release Date: 2007 „
Balzac are essentially a Japanese rip-off of the Misfits, and for this reason alone it's difficult not to view them with slight contempt and disdain. Imitating the more famous band's sound, horror theme and image to a disappointingly commercial extent that has even seen the release of action figures, this is a band that threatens to be more about gimmick than musical quality, and that just about sums them up.
The Misfits have always been my favourite punk rock band, primarily in their original, turbulent incarnation with Glenn Danzig but even in the more recent and even more turbulent reunion works with new singer Michale Graves, but their clichéd, campy horror appearance and horror film obsessed lyrics were bound to attract hordes of imitators, most notably AFI in the early years before they moved onto their own sound and became much worse. Although later albums would show a small amount of competence in living up to the ideal of a nineties/zero-zeroes punk band, 'The Last Men on Earth' stinks of below-par Misfits tribute that fails to capture anything that was great about their heroes.
Hirosuke Nishiyama's singing occasionally imitates Glenn Danzig, most noticeably in 'Diabolos,' before he develops his own irritating style that will see him through the rest of the band's releases, with only a very slight influence of the Japanese rock style. The backing vocals replicate the famous "woah" choruses of the Misfits but destroy its effect through over-use in every single song, and the only really enjoyable thing about this album is the dirty tone of the guitar, something that was presumably only a flaw due to the low production values at this point before the band became inexplicably big.
Unlike later albums that tend to follow a specific internal style, this one carelessly moves between imitations of different Misfits phases, from the minimalist, 'Static Age' style of '13 Ghosts' to the darker, bass-led, 'Halloween'-style 'God of Mercy III,' with most songs landing squarely in the more upbeat style of 'Walk Among Us' and missing out the band's heavy metal phase of 'Earth A.D.' Only a couple, such as 'Vanishes in Oblivion,' manage to imitate the Misfits sound without directly ripping off a specific song, and there are no stand-out songs in this rather weak excuse for an album. An album of straightforward Misfits covers would have been more honest and more enjoyable.
1. Night of the Blood Beast
3. 13 Ghosts
4. Day the Earth Caught Fire
5. Long Way - Before the Day Goes Over the Night
6. God of Mercy III
7. Fiendish Ghouls
8. Night Tide
9. Vanishes in Oblivion
10. From Hell It Came
11. Psycho in 308
12. Monster III
13. Girl from Horrorwood
1.Night of the Blood Beast / 2. Diabolos / 3.13 Ghosts / 4.Day the Earth Caught Fire / 5.Long Way - Before the Day goes over the Night / 6.God of Mercy III / 7. Fiendish Ghouls / 8.Night Tide / 9. Vanishes in Oblivion / 10.From Hell it Came / 11.Psycho in 308 / 12.Monster III / 13.Girl from Horrorwood