The Rock Band song library continues to grow at an exponential rate. On a weekly basis new tunes are delivered to you digitally, so much that unless you are a dedicated Rock Band aficionado it is nigh impossible to keep up with them all. This is why I am such a fan of these smaller collections because it introduces me to some songs that I may have passed on initially, or even not had any interest in because I was not aware of the band. The latest collection includes twenty tracks deemed as the Classic Rock collection. While a couple of the songs are questionable, and maybe one or two of them downright confusing, the selection is hard to argue with. For just under thirty bucks this is one item that all Rock Band fans should definitely check out.
The biggest problem with these track packs is that you may or may not already own some of the songs included. For instance I myself already had purchased the Boston and Rush songs before this came out, so that was already four tracks I had already experienced. It is impossible to predict the best songs to include on the retail release, but even if you already own a couple of tunes, it is still cheaper to purchase this package and simply download all the songs into your library. Thankfully what is on this disc is certainly worth it granted you don’t already own a majority of them already. Packing bands like The Who alongside George Thorogood and Steve Miller are certainly a winning combination; even if you don’t like classic rock these tracks are fun to play.
Much like any previous iteration of the series you can opt to play this disc stand alone with up to three friends on guitar, bass, vocals and drums. Even if you don’t own the original game you can still play through a solo career or jump right into quickplay. For the Achievement junkies there are even 250 more points to be earned, but be warned they don’t come without some work. A few require you to master songs as a full band, while others require a mastery of each instrument. The standard modes from the full version of Rock Band are included as well as all of the multi-player modes like tug-of-war and duel, so there is quite a bit of game for anyone who has never experienced Rock Band.
Complete Track Listing
- Boston – “Peace of Mind”
- Boston – “Rock and Roll Band”
- Dead Kennedys – “California Uber Alles”
- Dead Kennedys – “Holiday in Cambodia”
- Free – “All Right Now”
- George Thorogood – “Bad to the Bone”
- James Gang – “Funk #49”
- Jethro Tull – “Hymn 43”
- Lenny Kravitz – “Let Love Rule”
- Pat Benatar – “Hit Me With Your Best Shot”
- Police – “Can’t Stand Losing You”
- Police – “Truth Hits Everybody”
- Rush – “Closer to the Heart”
- Rush – “Red Barchetta”
- Siouxie & the Banshees – “Kiss Them For Me”
- Steve Miller Band – “Take the Money & Run”
- Steve Miller Band – “The Joker”
- Stone Roses – “Love Spreads”
- The Who – “Baba O’Riley”
- The Who – “Behind Blue Eyes”
Of course the most important part of any Rock Band compilation is the songs. The twenty tracks included on Classic Rock are definitely fun to play, and many of them are recognizable so just about everyone should be able to join in on the fun. From the wicked bass lines found in “Closer to the Heart” and “Holiday in Cambodia” to the sing-a-long favorites such as “The Joker” and “Bad to the Bone” there is literally a little something for everyone. Granted there is always a chance that not every song will appeal to everyone, and there are some questionable tracks here as well. Titles like “Hit Me with Your Best Shot” and “Let Love Rule” fail to impress in most areas, but the sheer variety and big names more than make up for it.
As a standalone product it would be difficult to gauge just how much interest this disc would garner. For anyone who has yet to play a rhythm game there is certainly an ample amount of content here, twenty songs, lots of modes and some truly great songs. However, when you weigh in that in order to enjoy that you would need those plastic instruments it is highly unlikely that anyone would be purchasing this without already owning Rock Band itself. I love the idea of these track packs; it gives users without online service a chance to continue the experience of the game through the DLC packs. It is unfortunate that you cannot just install the songs to the game without having to go through Xbox Live or PSN, but this is a small gripe.
Rock Band: Classic Rock Track Pack is a worthy addition to the ever-increasing world of Harmonix’s infinitely enjoyable music experience. As long as they continue to offer content, this will truly be the only rhythm game you will ever need to own. For Wii and PS2 owners this is a blessing, but for 360 and PS3 owners it all comes down to whether they already own the songs on the disc, or if they are interested in what is on it to begin with. For thirty bucks though it is hard not to recommend this exceptional collection of tracks.