What did you guys think about Harmonix's controversial leap from Activision to EA to develop Rock Band? Did Kasson Crooker fill you in on what was happening at the time? Liz: That guy is very good at keeping secrets! I don’t quite remember at what point in the process he told us about it. I definitely like Rock Band better though, because I can sing, and I’ve always been pretty terrible at the guitar stuff.
Are you gamers yourselves (and do you play on tour)? If so, do you have a console of choice? Sean: We own an Xbox 360 that we got for RBN self-authoring purposes in 2009. But we never actually did much of that by ourselves. I started to get a few games and last year enjoyed The Beatles: Rock Band, Batman: Arkham Asylum and Fable II quite a bit. But honestly, we're not big gamers. I actually took off about 25 years since retiring my Atari 2600 in '85.
Have you checked out any other music/rhythm games, like DJ Hero? What are your thoughts? Sean: Those aren't really on our radar as such, but we are aware of them. I think music-based games are terrific and fun. They are also becoming more and more educational, now that the instruments are becoming more playable and realistic. (The latest Rock Band is set to release a fully stringed guitar peripheral.)
The music/rhythm video game genre seems like a nice fit for portable gaming. Are there any plans to produce something for the iPhone, or other portable devices? Sean: We've been talking about doing a few games, but honestly I think the games we're thinking of are going to be more surreal and absurd, rather than technically 'playable' rhythm games.
Do you guys ever play your own songs in Guitar Hero/Rock Band? If so, which is your favourite track to play (and who's the best player)? Liz: I guess 'Brainpower'. It’s a lot of fun to sing and/or yell.
Sean: I think I've only played 'Brainpower'. There is a video of us playing through that one with Kasson at Harmonix from a couple years ago. We were pretty good at it, as I recall. We have some new ones coming out soon, so I'll play those when they're ready.
What's the best way for fans to pick up your music? Liz: Come to www.freezepop.net; we’ll have our new album available quite soon, and we of course have our back catalogue available as well.
Stuff is available through iTunes, etc. as well, but I’m old-school (and a graphic designer), so I think it’s more fun to get nice things to look at in addition to the music.