Written by: Alejandro Rodriguez, Special to CC2K
With the announcement of some new tracks for Rock Band 3 and the new instrument, the keyboard (keytar?), there is a plethora of new songs that can fully take advantage of Harmonix’s new enhancements of the game. But here at CC2K, we're more concerned about the music. The 83-song list has been unveiled for Rock Band 3. Read on to learn more.
While we're considering what songs to play with that new keytar, let's also consider what songs will make it into future expansion packs. They have a robust amount of downloadable content (DLC), so it’s likely that more and more songs will eventually get into the game. And with the Rock Band Network the artists can now take the initiative and put their own songs in the game, so now we have no one to blame but the lazy bands themselves. (They’re not lazy, they just don’t know any better.) Here are some recommendations for songs that would make great additions to Rock Band 3's library:
Michael Jackson-Rock With You
With a nice slow beat and a great sound this song would go over well at any party. It takes advantage of harmonies and with a nice synth solo in the middle of the game it will only help get more people into the Rock Band gaming experience. Plus it’s Michael Jackson, this song is so good you’ll probably have people dancing during the song. (A good sign that you are having an awesome Rock Band party.)
Prince-Let’s Go Crazy
Now it’s a known fact that Prince doesn’t want any of his songs in any kind of music video game. But with Rock Band’s new Pro Mode, which will help people learn how to actually play guitar, he might cool off a little bit. Let’s Go Crazy is also another fun party song that will get everyone involved. Plus, it has a really bad ass guitar solo at the very end of it.
The Beach Boys-Wouldn’t It Be Nice
Young love, is there nothing better in the world? The opening of this song will get new players into keyboard and it’s short enough where no one will be afraid to take on the song. All in all it should be easy enough for a lot of new players, so don’t be afraid to let mom take a chance at the song.
The Aquabats-Pool Party
The Aquabats rule. That’s really the extent of knowledge you need to know about them. If you want more though, the keyboard is used very well in this particular song and it’s really fun and energetic. Plus Rock Band doesn’t have many Ska bands, it wouldn’t hurt getting some more in the game.
Parliament-Give Up The Funk (Tear The Roof Off the Sucker)
Remember what I said about there being very little Ska in Rock Band? Funk has almost just as little. For a genre that lends so much fun and soul to music it is really under appreciated in Rock Band. (Currently there are only three tracks in the game that can claim the funk!) Anyway, Parliament is the perfect way to turn this all around. You get to work with all instruments and harmonies get a nice work out too. Who is trying to stop the flow of funk getting into Rock Band? And what is their true agenda?
Funkadelic-Hit It And Quit It
Just so that all of you know that I am very serious about getting more Funk into the game, I wanted to take extra precaution. Funkadelic also adds all the elements that I talked about with Parliament, but fans of the guitar will be pleased to know that Funkadelic goes the extra mile with the six-string. Eddie Hazel finishes the song with an amazing solo that will leave many in awe.
Deep Purple-Smoke On The Water
Smoke On The Water had already been in the first Guitar Hero game and for the most part it is Deep Purple’s most well known song. That’s not a bad thing, but some people get sick of the bigger hits quick. I wanted to put Lazy, but there aren’t any vocals in that song until four minutes into the song. Music snobbery aside, Smoke On The Water does a good job of keeping the Hard Rock aesthetic alive, but also adding a distorted organ to the mix. It will help introduce keyboard to any Hard Rock fan who might not like the idea of keyboard in the game.
There is an emphasis on the keyboard in this song, especially in the beginning. It’s not too fast where it will be too hard for players, but it’s not so easy that it will constantly be looked over after fans start learning how to use the keyboard to the fullest effect. Plus by the end of the song the entire band is having a jam session, so no one should be complaining.
I won’t lie, I haven’t added a lot of recent songs from this generation, but I really admire The xx’s music. There are no drums, rather there are beats generously put in their music that take the place of drums, enough so that they can be tracked in the game. Along with keyboards and a gentle Indie Pop sound, it becomes a very soothing. You won’t be head banging until you get whiplash to this song, but sometimes you just need to chill out. Right?
Bob Marley & The Wailers-Could You Be Loved
Bob Marley has many classic songs to his name, so much so that I could have picked any number of his songs and would have got just as good a result as some others. Could You Be Loved is simply one of my favorites of his though. Rock Band needs Reggae any way, any song that Harmonix picks would be a step in the right direction. Could You Be Loved would be awesome though.
Chances are that more songs will be announced by the time that E3 2010 comes around (June 15-17) and we should get to see the keyboard in action at about the same time. It seems like Harmonix is once again setting the standard for all music video games.
Songs announced so far…
Combat Baby — Metric
Dead End Friends — Them Crooked Vultures
Get Free — The Vines
Lasso — Phoenix
Me Enamora — Juanes
Oh My God — Ida Maria
Portions of Foxes — Rilo Kiley
The Hardest Button to Button — The White Stripes
Been Caught Stealing — Jane's Addiction
In the Meantime — Spacehog
Plush — Stone Temple Pilots
Walkin' on the Sun — Smash Mouth
Crazy Train — Ozzy Osbourne
Here I Go Again — Whitesnake
I Love Rock and Roll — Joan Jett
Just Like Heaven — The Cure
Rainbow in the Dark — Dio
The Power of Love — Huey Lewis and the News
Sister Christian — Night Ranger
Bohemian Rhapsody — Queen
Break On Through — The Doors
Crosstown Traffic — Jimi Hendrix