Now that The Beatles: Rock Band game has taken the world by storm, I’m sure other bands are going to follow suit given the opportunity to do so. Although most bands that would be a great choice for the game will probably never get the chance due to the taste of mainstream audiences. Bands like Led Zeppelin and U2 are sure to get their own edition of Rock Band, but what about some love for the band we know will never get the nod but should? That’s where we step in.
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10. Hall and Oates
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For those about to hate, you must realize that this could be the greatest party game ever created. Hall and Oates’ music offers enough jams to satisfy fans as well newcomers to the stupendous Philadelphia duo. Their songs are also a tad more technical than they come off. From the classy three-part harmonies that could utilize the new tech in Beatles Rock Band to G. E. Smith’s snazzy guitar chops, a Hall and Oates Rock Band game would be super f***ing fun as well as a legitimate challenge. Dressing up as the band would be a must. Come on, who wants to come over and jam out “Portable Radio” on the PS3 with me?!
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The chances of a James Brown Rock Band could maybe happen at some point down the road due to his iconic status in the mainstream, but a Parliament/Funkadelic-inspired game most certainly will never come to life. This is quite sad because it would be epic on levels that I can’t describe with the written word. Even though you would probably need an obscene amount of instrument controllers, you would hopefully have no problems finding an extra man-sized diaper to toss on for a go at “One Nation under a Groove.” Having a horn section and synthesizers brought into the mix would be such a great addition to the layout of the game. Being able to unlock Bootsy Collins and his Space Bass with slapping functionality would be a necessity for diehards as well. Lets jam some Maggot Brain!
8. Frank Zappa
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A Rock Band game dedicated to the works of Frank Zappa will never ever, ever happen in this lifetime. All I know is that it would be pretty rad if I could rip the "Muffin Man" solo at my leisure. I also know that I’m not alone here. Music games would be better if they attempted to venture out of the pop rock bubble and allowed players to experiment a bit. Imagine being able to do a freeform jam at certain points in a song. If it had anything to do with Frank, screwing up would probably get you more points than hitting the notes correctly. Being a conductor like Frank would be another interesting addition to the game. I have no freaking idea of how this would work, but it could be absolutely awesome. The only question left is if we want Steve Vai in the game. Well? That David Lee Roth crap was pre-tty lame.
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Pavement is one of my favorite bands of all time and they are easily one of the best groups of the ‘90s. If it wasn’t for the internet and amazing reissues gracing acclaimed music blogs in recent years, most new indie-rock/alternative listeners may have forgotten about the Stephen Malkmus-fronted outfit. This is why having a Pavement-themed Rock Band game would be so perfect. It would introduce their work to younger audiences while also gratifying old school alternative heads. I’m sure most alternative rock fans from the early ‘90s haven’t retired their flannel and spam T-shirts just yet. Wowee Zowee in its entirety anyone?
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Have you ever seen those black T-shirts with a huge, eerie skull face on them? That's the Misfits. These guys wrote dozens of catchy punk songs with irresistable hooks and a slasher film bent. If this game included the Evilive version of "All Hell Breaks Loose" s*** is getting smashed. Toss in Danzig's solo metal work and you've got a catalog of dozens of songs that would take almost 20 minutes to play through. It would be the greatest thing since Glenn got knocked out backstage. I wouldn’t even go out on Halloween if this existed. I would just grab a few of my best fiend friends, slick up our devilocks, and play all f***ing night long. Toss a few Samhain cuts in there while we’re at it to give it a darker edge. One! Two! Three! Go!
5. Velvet Underground/Lou Reed
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We all know that The Velvet Underground and Nico LP is one of the most influential records ever made and their music inspired some of the greatest artist of all time. So, why wouldn’t there be a game dedicated to their work as well as Lou Reed’s solo efforts? Even though a lot of the VU’s tracks are filled with drony grooves that may not seem like they would be fun to play in a video game, I truly believe fans don’t give a funk. It doesn’t matter if it’s a simple song to perform in the game, fans care more about playing their favorite songs than the technical skill it takes to execute it. That’s why “Maps” by the Yeah Yeah Yeahs is still one of the most popular songs on the Rock Band track list at parties. But if Velvet’s experimental jams don’t cut it for you in this arena, there could be countless Lou Reed jams waiting in the wings.
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To me, this could be one of the best Rock Band games ever made. I guess it might have a sliver of a chance of being created at some point down the line, but it will likely never happen. Playing Pantera’s entire body of work with a band of homies would be so f***ing ultimate it makes my d*ck hurt. Just the idea of the Rock Band peeps creating Dime’s classic Dime O' Flame or Dime O Flage as a controller is enough to get my money. I mean the guy is one of the greatest guitar players to ever walk the planet earth. Having a game like this would also be a grand tribute to his legacy. You could also allow players to do the songs without Phil’s vocals if you still have a serious beef with the dude. I know I still do. RIP Dime.
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Hear me out before you use clever Thom Yorke comments to destroy my day. First off, I highly doubt the band would ever allow Capitol records to release their entire catalogue for use in a video game. There are already a few songs out there in the games, but it’s very unlikely that a band like Radiohead would ever be considered for something like this in the first place.
As far as playing their music in a video game goes, the UK group has such a diverse range of tunes it would be extremely hard to know where to start. The band has evolved leaps and bounds musically over the years so it would be pretty fun to just work your way up form Pablo through In Rainbows. Things might get a bit tricky in the controller department when you start getting into the more electronic material, but I’m sure the Rock Banders could pull something outta their sleeve. Trying to sing like Thom Yorke is a whole different can of worms though.
2. The Kinks
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Do I really have to explain The Kinks here? The band has been getting the short end of the stick on a mainstream level for quite some time and really deserve a hell of a lot more love. Including The Beatles, The Kinks may be one of the greatest studio bands ever to record music. From “Lola” to “You Really Got Me,” The Kinks have numerous classics that would be amazing to play. Ray Davies and his band have far too many incredible records to count and I’m sure fans worldwide would have no problem shelling out some cash to jam out “Sunny Afternoon” on a Saturday night. A Rock Band acoustic guitar controller will be a necessity.
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Due to his extremely anal hold on every single element of his material/work, there is no way on planet earth that Prince would ever allow his music to be involved with a game like Rock Band. The man considers himself ’music’ and I’m sure he hates the idea of a game that recreates the act of playing music through a video console. He doesn’t even have a single song on any music game for craps sake. So with that said, it kinda makes me sad that a Purple Rock Band game will never be created. Prince Rogers Nelson has written some of the greats pop songs of all time and has an endless catalogue of legendary compositions that could keep players/fans busy for weeks. It also doesn’t hurt that he’s one of the most underrated guitar players ever and his music is much more complicated than it may seem. It would make a perfect addition to the franchise.