Tech News on G4

The Beatles: Rock Band is Beatlemania 2009

Sept 9, 2009

By Greg Gazin - Apple Gazin’ - G4 Canada

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The Beatles RockBandOn February 7th, 1964, The Beatles made history by arriving in North America and playing on the Ed Sullivan Show. Over 45 years later, September 9, 2009 will mark yet another historic first for the Beatles – The Beatles Rock Band. It would be the first time ever the Fab Four would have been presented in an interactive format. For those who’ve lived long enough to remember, we’ve seen them perform live as well as on TV, Beta, VHS, DVD, Laserdisc and now BluRay; We’ve also heard them live and on the radio as well as in mono stereo and Dolby surround sound; They’ve been represented on 33 and 45RPM vinyl, 4-track tape, 8-track cartridge cassette, and CD, (but still not yet on iTunes). So the release of The Beatles Rock Band is yet another indication we’re seeing yet another British Invasion that it’s “Beatlemania” all over again.

Beatlemania Lives!

As a Beatles fan, this has to be an exciting time another way to experience the sights, sounds an memories of the Beatles. And for those who have never experienced the phenomenon get a chance to really Twist & Shout 2009 multi-sensory style and learn about one the greatest band in the world that forever changed the world almost half a century ago.

45 Tracks

It’s designed in a Guitar Hero style, but with a few differences. You get a whopping 45 tracks from the over 200 sings form The Beatles catalog – a nice cross section ranging from their early to their final days. Surprises include: Tomorrow Never Knows and Boys and I Want You, but absent are: She Loves You, Hey Jude and Let it Be. While either Lennon and / or McCartney sing most songs, there are 9 “George” tracks and 5 by Ringo.

The Beatles RockBandClassic Footage-Animated

The background animation has come a long way since Yellow Submarine. You’ll see footage of the Cavern Club in Liverpool, the Ed Sullivan Theatre in New York, where the Beatles first played in America (and now where the David Letterman Show is now filmed). You see them playing at Shea Stadium, where in 1965 they played one of the first outdoor concerts to 55,000+ screaming fans. You cross the ocean to witness the Fab Four playing at The Budokan in Japan circa in 1966- their last touring year and of course any historical recollection would not be complete without crossing the famous Abbey Road crosswalk in London and experiencing their impromptu Apple Headquarters rooftop concert January 30, 1969, cut short by police intervention and featured in the film Let it Be.

Harmonies & Hidden Features

What’s also unique is that this is the first game to offer harmonies – something so signature to The Beatles sound. And as an incentive mastering the songs unlock hidden features like rare footage and never seen photos – Yeah!

The Beatles RockBandThe game will be available on 3 platforms: XBOX360, PlayStation 3 & Wii and will retail for about $60. The game should work will current Rock Band equipment and most Guitar Hero gear.  There is also a special limited edition set that contains hardware: John Lennon’s Rickenbacker 325 guitar; Paul McCartney’s trademark Höfner bass (it’s right-handed folks-although Paul was a lefty); George Harrison’s Gretsch Duo Jet guitar and the easily identifiable Ringo Starr’s classic black oyster pearl finish Ludwig Drums.

This alone may be one reason to get a new gaming system.

As John Lennon once said  “A splendid time is guaranteed for all”!


Greg Gazin can be reached at  gadgetguy “at” telus “dot” net Or

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