Before I get into the rest of the my set list, something occurred to me about the Unison Bonus mechanics of the game, and I'm wondering how it's handled in RB3.
Unison Bonuses are the original Band Moments, for those of you who have never touched Rock Band and swear by Guitar Hero. When you play a Unison Bonus, if all the instruments involved manage to nail that particular section, everybody gets an extra 25% added to their energy bar on top of the standard 25% they get(meaning all the instruments have the ability to deploy Overdrive). Miss it, and the instruments that manage that section only get the normal 25% they would.
The problem is, as originally mapped in the game, all instruments that are playing must have at least one note per Unison Bonus section to get it, and you cannot have Energy-collecting phrases on multiple instruments without it being marked as Unison Bonus.
Most of the songs already listed in Rock Band, when they have keyboards, have keys that are pretty evident throughout. But what happens when you have keys that are mapped as sparingly as, say, "Polly"'s drums? On Polly, that was fine, as it was a pretty minimalistic song anyway, and relatively short. Keys can be used a lot more sparingly, however, and I don't think it makes too much sense for Unison Bonuses to be assigned to nothing but all instruments. Either that, or allow overlapping Energy-collecting phrases on multiple instruments. I'm not THAT picky.
Now, for the next leg of my wishlist, I have to thank one of my friends for asking to burn a couple of party mixes for her birthday party. It gave me the chance to run down my entire library at home, allowing me to review songs that aren't on my laptop or iPhone, but probably should be. Also, probably because of the way Destructoid works, I published Part 2, but because I waited a day after the initial draft to publish it (I wanted to post it the day after my whole RB3-DLC-backwards-compatibility discussion
), it may have gotten lost amongst other day-old blog posts.
For your reference, Part 1 is available here
, and Part 2 here
. All the songs I've suggested to date have their own playlist at the bottom of this post. Now, onwards!
31. "The Inevitable Return of the Great White Dope" by The Bloodhound Gang (Hooray for Boobies, 2000)
First things first: This is conditional on "Like a scrotum, here it is in a nutshell" making it past the censors.
Beyond that, I have to concede that the majority of this song is about the rapping than it is the instrumentation. There's a lot here that could potentially be used for the different instruments, but a lot of them are pretty obviously synthesized. The bassline is actualy a sawtooth, the guitar would switch between a synth guitar and another keyboard, and the keys would be the organ that seems to permeate throughout the entire song.
"Fire Water Burn" would be fun, but I don't remember a keys line.
32. "It's My Life" by Bon Jovi (Crush, 2000)
Continuing the tradition of having one Bon Jovi song per non-band-specific Rock Band title, this seems to be the logical next-choice, except that it doesn't come from Slippery When Wet
. There's tons of harmonizing and vocalizing, a piano/synth loop, and it's another one of his ridiculously huge hits. Another Ritchie Sambora guitar solo (significantly shorter and less technically impressive than the SWW ones, admittedly) and my former status as a 908er compel me to demand this song. I also have to have to say, this is the one I would want of all Bon Jovi's other songs.
Except, maybe, "Never Say Goodbye." That'd also be awesome.
33. "Me Plus One" by Annie (Anniemal, 2004)
Synthpop isn't poorly represented in Rock Band, to be sure, but I could do with more of it. There's a synth bass to be represented, a light guitar line reminiscent of INXS's "Need You Tonight," and vocal ooh line that could be represented by either harmonies or keys.
If there were a reasonable way to get "Chewing Gum" in there, I'd be cool with that, too.
34. "You Know It's Hard (Murder)" by The Crystal Method (Tweekend, 2001)
I've heard this song referred to both ways. An awesome breakbeat drum line, a constantly-changing guitar line, synth loops, and an actual vocals track makes this a TCM track that would be a great on-disc track on RB3.
The only other TCM song I'd put on-disc is their Filter collaboration with "Trip Like I Do," but Harmonix's "83 songs, 83 artists" line makes this more or less an unlikely choice (I suppose this could be a loophole). Also, I like this song better.
35. "The Audience is Rural" by Cut Chemist (The Audience Is Listening Theme Song, 2006)
This would make good use of harmonies with singing AND talkies at the same time, not to mention have a ridiculously awesome drum line, a chorded bassline that changes up pretty frequently, and a synth-sax line. Plus, bonus "Hey, it's that song!" points for being the lyricized version of the song people remember from the iPod commercials.
He did a collaboration with Ozomatli, if I remember correctly, that could probably work. Not quite as well, but it'd cover the ill-covered hip-hop-Latin genre. Actually, the more I listen to it, the more I'm convinced it'd make awesome DLC. But it's still actually an Ozomatli track that CC contributed to, so...
36. "Digital Love" by Daft Punk (Discovery, 2001)
Because I want Daft Punk, dammit. Not the greatest-known song, but definitely off their best-known disc and a single to boot. This song covers all instruments, has a small synth solo, an awesome guitar solo, and the singer autotunes his way through a melody.
I could get behind "Robot Rock," though.
37. "Come On Eileen" by Dexy's Midnight Runners (Too-Rye-Ay, 1982)
There is no good reason to not include this song outside of licensing. This hits the coveted 25-40 demographic of theirs by being a ridiculously popular one-hit-wonder of the 80s, has a memorable piano line, harmonies, and should be fun on most of the instruments. It also contains one of the few non-metal blast beats I can think of during the later accelerando. (Also barely audible in the original mix, a piano solo.)
38. "I Touch Myself" by Divinyls (Divinyls, 1991)
Also hits the same demo from my "Come On Eileen." Not the most exciting drum or keys line (there's an organ playing in the background), but harmonies, basslines and guitar lines that walk all over the place (plus a semi-guitar-solo), this would be an awesome addition to the library.
39. "Pato and Roger A Go Talk" by The (English) Beat (Special Beat Service, 1982)
None of you guys remember this group. I barely did, but for repeated viewings of Grosse Pointe Blank
("Mirror in the Bathroom") and Ferris Bueller's Day Off
("March of the Swivelheads" when Ferris is racing home towards the end of the movie), and a girl I dated being a fan of the group. Reggae/ska is under-represented, and this song with its toasting, syncopated keyboard and walky bass/guitar lines would be an excellent candidate for Rock Bandification.
40. "Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots, Part 1" by The Flaming Lips (Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots, 2002)
Because you can't get enough psychedelic rock, and this is my favorite representation of the genre. It also covers all the RB3 bases in terms of instrumentation and harmonies. Plus, anyone who hasn't already heard this song will have to try and sing lines like "You won't let those robots eat me" with a straight face. Should be a crowd-pleaser.
Alternatively, I guess "She Don't Use Jelly" would be the other demanded Flaming Lips track, being the one really big charter, while also including wacky lyrics that are difficult to sing without cracking up.
41. "40'" by Franz Ferdinand (Franz Ferdinand, 2004)
Let's get this out of the way: I'm a huge Franz Ferdinand fan. This is one of my favorite songs of theirs, and does a good job of covering all instrumental bases while being pretty well known (it's been used in a lot of dramedy trailers for movies for the past few years). It also has a memorable guitar riff (and a tremolo line) and a varied if not technically-complex bass line.
I'd be pretty much happy with more songs off of their debut album. "Auf Achse" would be another good one with a fairly memorable keyboard line.
42. "Low Rider" by War (Why Can't We Be Friends?, 1974)
All-out classic. The guitar line would be boring, but the bass line is memorable, and the song is filled with small drum fills here and there would keep it from getting too dull.
"Why Can't We Be Friends?" would be another obvious candidate, especially to remind people that it wasn't originally a Smash Mouth song.
43. "Worry About You" by Ivy (Long Distance, 2001)
Not quite shoegazer music but getting there, Dominique Durand's voice is hypnotic, and the cascading vocalizations during the bridge just take me away. The clock-tick guitar line works with the drifting keys (there are several layers of synths, and they could cover different synths over the different verses). The bassline is a very straightforward one, mostly meant to be practical here, but that's not a sin.
The other Ivy song I'd REALLY want in-game is "Feel So Free," but I figure I'd go with the one people may actualy have a chance of recognizing. Fewer people would recognize "Feel So Free" unless they were a big fan of Veronica Mars
, where that song got its pre-release debut.
44. "This Love" by Maroon 5 (Songs About Jane, 2002)
I can only assume this wasn't in the original Maroon 5 pack because...well, actually, it was probably because it wasn't part of the new album, but now that piano and harmonies are in RB3, I can't see any reason they WOULDN'T put this song in there. It's arguably their biggest hit, should be fun on every instrument, and basically the only reason anyone would protest it is if they're both complexity-driven metal fans AND haters.
I've always been partial to "The Sun." That song has a really nice bass and key line, and would also work beautifully in game.
45. "The Time Is Now" by Moloko (Things to Make and Do, 2000)
Roisin Murphy's voice is dead sexy. Your voice cannot beat hers in sexiness, unless you are k.d. lang, Shirley Manson, or Chrissie Hynde. I guess that's a count against this song, since your voice cannot possibly match hers.
However, fantastic acoustic guitar AND bass (yes, acoustic bass!) lines and a synth line that could switch between piano and strings at the drop of a hat make this a great candidate for on-disc-ness, or barring that, DLC.
46. "99 Luftballons" by Nena (Nena, 1983)
If I need to justify this song, I will HURT you. Also, it HAS to be the original German version.
47. "Absolutely (Story of a Girl)" by Nine Days (The Madding Crowd, 2000)
More power-pop, with both keyboard and guitar solos (the former following up the latter), a bass line that doesn't jump out at you, but actually kicks a lot of ass, harmonies that jump out at you, and a chorus whose infectiousness is almost on par with "Alex Chilton" (no chorus can be as infectious as "Alex Chilton"'s). I really don't know any of their other songs, but this one is a clear winner in my book for on-disc-ness.
48. "Spit on a Stranger" by Pavement (Terror Twilight, 1999)
Because I wouldn't be able to claim indie-pop pretender status without listing these guys at all. This song has a very light key part, a beautiful guitar riff, a subtle if walky bassline, some choice drum fills, and low-to-the-point-of subliminal harmonies. This song is beautiful and you can't convince me otherwise. I want this song, now more than ever.
49. "Dirty Mind" by The Pipettes (We Are The Pipettes, 2006)
And on the opposite side of that, we have The Pipettes, which would probably be The Spice Girls but for the fact that the songs from the one album I'm aware of from them feels significantly more retro (if keeping the whole "riot grrl" thing going). This song has a guitar line that, while hard to notice at first, will grab you when you do. The bassline is also sufficiently walky, the keyboard clean and energetic, and obviously the girls singing harmonize (as they are paid to do) and do so well.
Also, the accents? Also very, very sexy. Not as sexy as Roisin Murphy, k.d. lang, Shirley Manson, or Chrissie Hynde, but still sexy.
50. "I'm Gonna Be" by The Proclaimers (Sunshine on Leith, 1989)
Don't think I need to justify this one, either, but I WILL note that it has a keyboard line, even if you don't hear it.
51. "A Change Would Do You Good" by Sheryl Crow (Sheryl Crow, 1997)
This song catches Sheryl Crow just after the Tuesday Night Music Club
perkiness, with a badass fuzz bass, an acoustic guitar loop (and a guitar solo besides), a more-evident organ over a less-evident synth, and...drums. This is probably my favorite Sheryl Crow song overall, which probably explains its presence here over some of her other songs.
"All I Wanna Do" from TNMC would also be a good candidate, on account of it being her breakout hit, but I wouldn't refuse "Every Day is a Winding Road."
52. "Gangsters" by The Specials (Specials, 1979)
If I'm going to throw in suggestions like The Beat, The Specials also have to go in there. They could change between the two different guitars for the guitar line (there's one with the ska pick-up, and another one that functions as lead guitar, with occasional noodling, and a solo); the bassline is everywhere, there are both a piano and an organ, and a place where the drums start getting exciting more than functional.
I also request that the line "DON'T CALL ME SCARFACE!" be marked for Overdrive.
"Ghost Town" and "Little Bitch" are other good candidates from The Specials.
53. "Dub 56" by The Toasters (Dub 56, 1994)
Fine, one more ska suggestion. Energetic EVERYTHING in marked contrast to The Specials, with a guitar solo, a couple of drum fills lying about, and a bassline that while not "Maxwell Murder" insane still manages to get around, this would be a wonderful representation of the Third Wave/Modern Two-Tone genre in-game.
54. "Unbelievable" by EMF (Schubert Dip, 1991)
That bassline. Tell me you wouldn't want to play that bassline. Or that piano line, for that matter. The guitar manages to be interesting for a while (did YOU remember there was a solo in this song?), too. The drums get some variation, too.
55. "A Girl Like You" by Edwyn Collins (Gorgeous George, 1994)
That thing I was saying about sexy voices? I meant female voices. Edwyn Collins has a fantastic voice that I think guys would have problems matching up to. The guitars and the piano have the obvious advantage when it comes to the instruments in this song, I guess, but there's
no love lost for the drums, which has a few fills. The bassline is mostly a workman's bassline, but damned if its one main riff isn't a hot one.
56. "Nothing Is the Same" by Grand Funk Railroad (Closer to Home, 1970)
One of the few times I'm aware of that GFR has lived up to the "Funk" part of their name, this song doesn't contain keyboards. However, it is in fact a fantastic song for all the other instruments. The guitar doesn't stop noodling, the bassline struts around like it owns the place, the drums do not stop with the fills, and minor harmonies support a wonderful vocal melody.
And then you get to the jam.
Seriously, wait until you get about two and a half minutes in. Some of you may rip it as being derivative of "Working Man," except I believe "Working Man" didn't come out until 1974, meaning this song was first.
And then when you think it's about to climax into a BRE, you have another break which just kicks ass and takes names.
It finally starts coming to a climax by quieting down, but not without spending most of that slowdown noodling on both guitar and bass and drums making fills like crazy.
Then you get to the BRE.
Seriously, this is one song I desperately want for the game. Hopefully, now you do, too.