Monday, May 12, 2008

Rock Band Rocks Bloggers All Night Long

Is Rock Band the Video Game an authentic rock n' roll experience? Hell No. Contemporary technology simply has not evolved to the point where a video game cartridge will emit the smell of cigarettes, beer, desperation, dirty dollar bills, and vomit.

And yet! Is Rock Band super fun to play, and does it make you feel like you're flying when you play it well? Yes.

For her part, Betty has not had this much fun with a video game since "Ken Griffey Jr. Baseball" rocked Koko's SNES. Besides it always being fun to punch buttons into agreement with fast-moving colored lights, the game makes you think about how rock and pop music is made. On one level, this music is really dumb. It's just riffs played over and over again, and then a pause that makes you miss the riff, and then the return of the riff! But on the other hand, the game makes you respect Rock musicians all the more. The parts are always more intricate and harder to play and to play well than they sound. And could YOU think of the riff to, say, "Enter Sandman"?

Betty and Bimbo (who play in a touring band called "The Beans") are improving their Rock Band chops a lot these days, hitting over 95% on most songs on "Hard" mode, and even beginning to explore the intimidating realm of "Expert" plastic toy guitar gods. Bimbo's signature track is baroque anthem "Welcome Home" by unknown legends Coheed and Cambria. Betty rocks her butt out to "Celebrity Skin" by the much-missed Hole. Conclusion: The seventies and the nineties really shine if you throw an Xbox around them.

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