Slideshow

Hands on with The Beatles: Rock Band at the Diamant Hotel Penthouse

We shred to classic Fab Four tunes with Aussie rock band Short Stack

  • Sydney Australia, 9/9/09: To celebrate the [[artnid:317660|worldwide release of The Beatles: Rock Band|Review: The Beatles: Rock Band]], Electronic Arts threw an exclusive media event at the Diamant Hotel Penthouse in King's Cross. The Aria chart-topping band Short Stack were on hand to get the Beatlemania in full swing. We managed to wrest the controls away from the real-life rock stars to test the game ourselves: check out the rest of the slideshow for our verdict.
  • The limited edition Premium Bundle includes a large scale Hofner Bass replica, a Ludwig-branded drum kit with classic Beatles logo and vintage kick drum head, a microphone and a microphone stand.

  • As this picture attests, you need quite a bit of room to set the game up properly; just like Guitar Hero: World Tour and Rock Band.

  • The drum kit: groovy.

  • The bundled mic that comes with Special Edition of the game is standard Rock Band fare.

  • Penthouse view of Elizabeth Bay, Sydney.

  • A respectable spread was laid out for the journos in attendance (curiously, there was plenty of meat on offer. Weren't The Beatles famously vegetarian?)

  • The Beatles: Rock Band entices punters to have a crack.

  • The game blends a range of graphical styles -- with plenty of homages to classic Beatles iconography.

  • The Fab Four take a stroll down Abbey Rd.

  • Despite the cartoony graphics, it's always abundantly clear who the game's stars are (and not just because they're in the title).

  • The game contains plenty of suitably trippy visuals to fit in with the whole 'Yellow Submarine' vibe (damn hippies).

  • An EA representative talks up special guests of the evening; Short Stack. Cue muted applause.

  • With introductions done, Australian rock Godites Short Stack hit the stage (er, the pentouse floor) and belted out a few Beatles tunes.

  • Lead singer Shaun Diviney gives his best rock pout for the ladies. A bevy of male journalists watch on jealously.

  • Short Stack drummer Bradie Webb. Look at those drum sticks fly!

  • We later asked Shaun Diviney who his favourite Beatle was. After a very long pause, we were half afraid he was going to reply "...um, a ladybug?" (Thankfully, he went with Paul.)

  • Short Stack made it big via My Space and Facebook, apparently. They're so Gen Y.

  • Shredding to the Beatles. Depressingly, none of these guys were even twinkles in their mothers' eyes when The Beatles were big.

  • We were going to ask Diviney for some designer-stubble tips, but punked out at the last second.

  • Diviney did a respectable cover of Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds. (It was better than the William Shatner version anyway.)

  • As any 14-year old girl will tell you, you can never have too many Short Stack photos.

  • Bass guitar fretboard.

  • The Beatles: Rock Band is available now on PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Nintendo Wii with an RRP of $369.95 (limited edition Premium Bundle).

  • If you'd like to see Short Stack perform with real instruments, go to [[xref:www.ticketek.com.au|www.ticketek.com.au]] -- the band will be touring in December.

  • We're not sure who rocked harder -- Short Stack or their retro threads!

  • The production values of each instrument are higher than previous Rock Band games.

  • With the frivolities out of the way, Short Stack settled down to play some of their own hit tracks, including Sway, Sway Baby.

  • The drum kit in action.

  • The journalists in attendance were then invited to have a bash on the game themselves. Our verdict: It's Rock Band, but with Beatles tracks. This is a Good Thing.

  • The band nailed each level of the game, which proves real-life musicians are naturally talented at rhythm action games. (Either that, or they practiced really hard before we got there.)

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