Too much rock for just one hand \mm/

typed for your pleasure on 17 February 2008, at 6.52 pm

Sdtrk: ‘Jacqueline’ by Franz Ferdinand

As my friend goshou has been a rabid fanatic of the Guitar hero series ever since its inception, it naturally stood to reason that he would pick up the rhythm game phenomenon known as Rock Band up for his XSLAB 360 upon its release. Shortly after he did so, Zip Gun grabbed a copy as well for his PS3. So usually, our Saturday get-togethers are finished off with a hearty hour or two of banding rocks together.
Our group’s name is ‘AH SALOPE GET OFF ME!!’, the name stemming from a long-standing in-joke within our group of mates*, but usually we rock out on Free Mode, as neither SafeT or I have the game, so we can’t practise our chops at home. We’re prone to switch up instruments, but usually ZG plays guitar or sings, goshou mans guitar or drums, SafeT can be found either singing, drumming, or ah, guitarring, and I usually pick drums or bass, or vocals if it’s one of the songs by the Ramones. Like most of the other bands on the rock server, we’re pretty average; however, it must be said that we’re shockingly good at Bon Jovi’s ‘Wanted Dead or Alive’. We can’t explain it.

The game’s opened my ears to a bunch of songs that I’ve always heard of, but never actually heard, like Foreigner’s ‘Juke box hero’, or ‘Paranoid’ by Black sabbath, or Deep purple’s ‘Highway star’, which for some bizarre reason I actually like. Maybe it’s due to its association with the ‘Diamond is unbreakable‘ story arc of the manga series JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure.

So I was just thinking recently: you know what song is begging to be added to the already-lengthy Rock Band playlist? ‘Sister Ray’, by the Velvet underground.

There would be a big brawl over which take to use. Of course everybody would opt for the takes where they sounded best. It was a tremendous hassle, so on ‘Sister Ray’ which we knew was going to be a major effort we stared at each other and said, ‘This is going to be one take. So whatever you want to do, you better do it now.’
And that explains what is going on in the mix. There is a musical struggle — everyone’s trying to do what he wants to do every second, and nobody’s backing off. I think it’s great the way the organ comes in [John] Cale starts to try and play a solo. He’s totally buried and there’s a sort of surge and then he’s pulling out all the stops until he just rises out of the pack. He was able to get louder than Lou [Reed] and I were. The drums are almost totally drowned out.

— Sterling Morrison, from ‘Up-tight: the Velvet Underground story’

Yeaaah, all seventeen sarky chaotic seedy whirlwind minutes of Sister Ray. And here you thought ‘…and Justice for All’ was an endurance test. Pfft, lightweight

*Do you want to know? Do you really want to know? Click on the comments for additional unneccesary exposition

Random similar posts, for more timewasting:

Less convenient, yet much more alluring, than a Walkman on November 26th, 2013

A subset of what, exactly? on May 23rd, 2009

12 have spoken to “Too much rock for just one hand \mm/”

  1. Davecat writes:

    Our pal Mike claims the Resident evil series of videogames as among his favourites, and many an evening would be spent round at his old apartment, Utica Base, listening to him play while the rest of us were engaged in other things (mucking about with Poser 3 on the computer, reading issues of various anime magazines, petting Mike’s cat Toonces, napping, etc). Every time a zombie would attack Mike, as they do, 90% of the time he’d respond with a frantic ‘AH BITCH GET OFF ME!’ while emptying a couple of clips into his new best friend. It became a catchphrase, and naturally sprang to mind when we came up with the name for our group. Since the servers for Rock Band frown upon blue language, Zip Gun simply changed ‘bitch’ to ‘salope’, which is French for ‘bitch’, so now we’re only offending/amusing Francophones.

    The end!

  2. Miss Hyde writes:

    geetar hero is love! Even tho i totally suck at it 🙂

  3. linnea writes:

    I love the Rock Band game. I’ve suggested about a million songs to the developers through the website, which I doubt will get read, but it makes me hopeful for the new catalogue of downloadable songs! I sing because it’s my favorite and none of my friends seem to be able to learn how to control their pitch. That, and my friend K. would have a conniption fit if I touched his drum kit! So it works out well. =^..^= Glad to hear you’re having fun with the game.

  4. Mahtek writes:

    Ah, it warms my old heart to hear a youngster show an appreciation for the classics! Perhaps you would like to peruse my collection of ancient vinyl? I have been meaning to get a USB turntable so that I could transfer some gems to current media.

    I’m suprized that you didn’t mention Bowie? Of any of the classic artists I’d figured you to be a Bowie fan. I have many, oft played albums of his.

  5. SafeTinspector writes:

    I only wish the guitar was more durable. Its almost like taffee when you bite into the damn thing.

  6. Davecat writes:

    Miss Hyde –
    It’s weird; I suck shite at Guitar hero as well. In fact, I’m rubbish at most bemani games (Dance dance revolution, Para para paradise, and that one with the turntable — but I’m okay at Taiko Drum master, and near-ecstatic on the rare occasions when goshou breaks out the Dreamcast and fires up Samba de amigo), so when he first started frothing about Rock Band, I was like, ehhh… But strangely, I don’t do too badly! Of course, playing Bass on Easy certainly helps. 🙂

    There’s an oft-mentioned correlation between gamers’ ability to play Rock Band and genuine musicians who try to play Rock Band, and are crap at it. I can’t remember who it was — maybe Slash of G’n’R? — but they said that it’s completely different, as when you’re playing, it’s less of knowing the notes and the music and just barreling through, versus when you play the game, it’s more of hitting the appropriate buttons at the right time, and for a ‘trained’ musician, it’s odd to have to wait until such-and-such light hits the bar to play your note. It’s a different mindset…

    linnea –
    Good to see you back! 🙂
    O, if I had the game, I’d just be suggesting various songs by the Cure, the Jesus and Mary Chain, and pretty much the entire ‘Unknown pleasures’ album by Joy division. And no ‘New rose’ by the Damned? For shame. 😐

    It’s weird; our circle of degenerates also enjoys the Karaoke revolution series (yes, we’re nerds — this is history, not news), and to me, it seems like it’s easier to maintain pitch and whatnot in those games than it is for Rock Band — it doesn’t seem as forgiving. Maybe it’s just me…

    Does your band have a name? We’ll look you up!

    Mahtek –
    mmm, lovely lovely vinyl. LPs never went away, they just take up more space! Errm…

    I know what you mean — I’d like to get a USB turntable as well. I’ve got a mini-collection of records — most of ’em are those stereo demonstration records from the Sixties made to help audiophiles calibrate their brand-new hi-fis — but there’s some other entries in the catalogue that have yet to be re-released on Cd… They’re dropping in price, though; $100 USD isn’t that bad, and I’m sure some places might have them even cheaper.

    And of course Bowie! Bowie is a god! A GOD! But to date, there’s only like three of his songs on the game: Moonage daydream, Queen Bitch, and “Heroes”. Where is Suffragette city? Or Life on Mars? So where were the Spiders??

    Those guitars seem susceptible to too much rock, it seems. I’m tellin’ you, though, all I do is upstrokes on that thing, and it plays alright for me!
    Well, it plays okay.

  7. PBShelley writes:

    Ah, I love seeing “Sister Ray” references 🙂 This song WILL kick your ass, still to this day! I remember well the first time I played it; it was the first song that made me go WTF???? It kind of scared me, in fact. This was March 4th, 1968, so I was a youngster :O

    Yes, that dates me but so what? I’m not into Time, man. It’s all Now LOL

    I have an elpee collection of 2,172 albums but only 26 of them bought since 1993. (Damn CDs! *shakes fist at CDs*) Yes, I’m just anal enough to have recorded the dates when I bought them; I’m a music junkie LOL -Erm, actually a junkie over anything I’m into. Except actual junk, of course.

    Speaking of, I recall playing VU’s “Heroin” for my mom for some kid-like reason when that album came out (on April 17, 1967 since the Log is open), and she looked concerned for some adult-like reason LOL Glad I never got into that shite. Music is bad (good) enough!

    As prone to computer gaming addiction AND music-purchasing as I am it’s probably a good thing that I haven’t yet braved the worlds of Guitar Hero and Rock Band; I’d be in deep doo-doo LOL

    Bowie *is* a god! I especially liked his “Berlin” period (I guess) with “Low” Heroes” and “Station to Station” as my favorites. Brian Eno (his collaborator then) is a co-god, to be sure 😉 The early Roxy Music albums are classics, and even include a doll-reference, though of the blow-up variety *shudder* (“In Every Dream Home a Heartache”).

    And.. there’s a Taiko Drum Master game??? I love Taiko drumming; it stirs up the beast inside me LOL It’s awesome :O They had a scene with it in Air the Movie in the “flashback” scenes (the “Summer Arc” from the series that didn’t include this). Very cool (and stirring). Nothing like it!

    Gosh, I’ve blabbed for far too long, sorree!

    PBS & the Etcs (which will be my Band’s name LOL)

  8. Zip Gun writes:

    Actually DC, “Suffragette City” is in Rock Band, but I don’t think it’s unlocked yet on my game. It should be on goshou’s though. It’s rated in one of the very hard levels, I do know that.

    And to be honest, I think Rock Band is more forgiving than Karaoke Revolution in terms of pitch recognition. But I like them both! And yes, the initial run of guitars have been shite. They’re trying to fix that, apparently. In fact, I am going to get my replacement set up now! HURRAH

  9. Miss Hyde writes:

    I’m a huuge fan of Dance Dance Revolution 🙂

    I’ve been looking into this rock band game and I have decided I want NEED it! I’ll need an XBlox first but. . . . I need it!



  10. ray rentell writes:

    Whooppeeee a band I have heard of at last !

    This would be one of my “Desert Island Disc’s”

    And I am also quite partial to the little tale of Waldo, its my sort of humour …. and I still have the original Vinyl.

    And theres the eternal puzzle of how did Waldo manage to tape and staple carton closed?

    PBS and I are around the same age and I seem to remember another conversation like this comparing our youthful likes.

    And the band game sounds fun, do they have titles by Tom Petty, now that would be nice.

  11. PBShelley writes:

    Hi Ray,

    Ah yes, “White Light White Heat” … my dad actually destroyed my first copy LOL He was pissed about something I did (or didn’t) and came in and smashed his fist down on the record while it was playing; it flew off and when I recovered it found two bite-sized chunks broken out of it that obliterated the lead tracks (on both sides of course). I didn’t think of replacing it until it had gone out of print and it cost a pretty penny (but worth it natch)!

    I’d forgotten about dear Waldo LOL! I remember hearing that and following the voice telling the creepy story as it wafted between the two speakers (stereo!!! What a concept!). After I’d gotten used to the story I turned down one speaker so I could hear the VU playing in the background; some cool music back there! 🙂

    I dig Tom Petty too. In fact, I made his “Walls” (from “She’s the One” soundtrack I think) integral to an early chapter in Lily’s story 🙂 I even gave him a cameo in a latter scene where an un-named young man with a top hat encounters Lily in Washington Square (in San Francisco where it’s set).
    I like to give my musical heroes props 🙂

  12. Davecat writes:

    Despite its difficulty, we’re going to have to take the necessary steps to unlock ‘Suffragette city’. *cracks knuckles*

    And I think there need to be more third-party peripheral developers. Could you imagine being able to get a Rock Band guitar shaped like a Hofner bass? Or a Vox Phantom? Or a Hohner Steinberger, just like Mike used to have? That would be rather ace…

    Hyde-chan –
    Well, I was going to suggest you get the game now, like I did for Steel battalion — I picked that up before getting my XSLAB — but unlike Steel battalion, Rock Band probably won’t be in short supply…

    Rentell –
    ‘And theres the eternal puzzle of how did Waldo manage to tape and staple carton closed?’
    You know, I hadn’t thought of that. Poor old Waldo Jeffers…

    I’ve no idea if there’s any Tom Petty songs on the game; I don’t recall running across any. ZG? goshou?

    PBS –
    Your dad demolished an original vinyl copy of ‘White light / White heat’? YOU MUST GO BACK IN TIME AND STOP HIM.

    And I’d have to say ‘Low’ is my favourite Bowie album, followed by ‘Aladdin Sane’. Although I think it’s a shame Bowie didn’t go with the original choice for Low’s title, ‘New music night and day’. Ah well, perhaps in an alternate universe!

    And yes, Virginia (Plain), there is a Taiko Drum master game for the PS2. The wee SD taikos that run around during play are too cute to be believed. So I don’t believe them! 🙂

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