If you didn’t make it out to Fiend Fest to see Balzac on their first US tour, you missed out. Let me tell you, they were fuckin’ incredible. I saw kids seeing and hearing them for the first time get blown away by their set. I even got to hang with them for a bit each night that I went. Here is a little history for you. The band originated in 1992 and are from Osaka, Japan. The band is a Misfits-influenced band that has taken everything that is to be loved of the band and improved on it. They play original songs that are catchy and can compete against the Misfits catalog. This release is a collection of songs from their past catalog that they re-recorded for their North American introduction. Some of the songs on this recording were released earlier this year in Japan as the Beware of Darkness EP. On that EP, the song “The Pain (Is All Around)” and three live tracks did not end up on the American release. But the American release is chock full’o songs. Seventeen studio and three live tracks fill the disc. In addition, you get a bonus DVD of videos that were only available in Japan. The differences I hear in this recording session, compared to the past versions, are the vocals are a little up front in the mix, the guitar is a little pushed back, and the tempo is a hair slower, I believe. The songs are still great though! I look at it as just a different version of a great thing. Fans of the Misfits, Samhain, AFI or Danzig, here is your next favorite band!