Review: Green Day: Rock Band



Kerplunk: A Play in One Act


Lights up. We're in a mid-size sedan somewhere near the middle of the country where friends Seth and Frank are road-tripping to an annual combination conference and competition for the best air guitarists, air drummers and karaoke singers: The Ruby Bridge Concertition.

Seth
: [polishing off the last bite of a drive-thru roast beef sandwich] Some guys are just in it to pick up chicks at the bonfire or to meet C-Diddy, but the one thing I really can't wait for?

Frank
: The Concertition?

Seth
: Hell yes, The RB Concertition! Hours and hours of every decent air musician on the planet rocking until their air calluses bleed? Don't mind if I do. I always liked it when they did a bunch of different bands, but the all-Beatles thing last year? Ho-lee shit, that made a believer outta me.

Frank
: Dude, didn't I tell you? I saw a rehearsal for this year's show! If you thought The Beatles thing was sick, wait until you see what they've got this year. All night and all morning you're going to be feasting your fingers on the one ... the only –

Seth
: Tell me!

Frank
: GREEN DAY!

Seth
: [a long pause] ... What, are you f**king with me?
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Frank: What, you don't like Green Day?

Seth
: It's not that, I mean, I don't anything Green Day. They're fine, I like some of their songs. Isn't that pretty much everybody on Earth?

Frank
: If you think about it, you probably like more of their songs than you know. "Basket Case," "Longview," "When I Come Around" --

Seth
: Maybe even a few that aren't off Dookie?

Frank
: Ha, ha. But seriously, there are a bunch that are a hell of a lot of fun to play air guitar with, they even rock a little harder than a lot of those Beatles tracks from last year. And they've got pretty much every Green Day song mainstream fans would ever wanna hear.

"That sounds cool at least, except for, you know, still Green Day."


Seth
: OK, but won't they get a little ... samey? The Beatles were constantly evolving, like a different band every other record and Green Day today just sounds like an older version of mid-90s Green Day. Seems like it would get a little dull.

Frank
: Well, maybe a bit repetitive if you're not really into the band. But I think you might be surprised how much diversity they showed on their new album.

Seth
: How's the show?

Frank
: Oh, it's awesome. The guys they got to pretend to be the band on stage look just like them and they and have all the movements they do at shows down cold. You'd never know the difference. They don't do as many costume changes as the Beatles impersonators did though.

Seth
: So what about the sets? Last year was insane, with all those different stadiums and ... what'd they call 'em? With the crazy pink elephants and rainbows and shit? "Dreamscapes"? And they way they were in chronological order, it was like living music history!

Frank
: Oh, yeah, definitely! They've got like ... three different venues.

Seth
: Wait, three? Are they at least in order?

Frank
: Well, no, it just kind of jumps around.

Seth
: I don't know, sounds a little half-assed to me. Are they at least doing the giveaways again?

Frank
: Oh yeah, a ton of 'em. Everybody who does well gets a bunch of pictures and stuff, and if you can do good for a few songs in a row you can get some performance videos and interviews. It's awesome fan service.

Seth
: That sounds cool at least, except for, you know, still Green Day.

Frank
: Man, what's your problem with Green Day?

Seth
: I'm sorry, you're right, I'm being an ass. It's not like I have a problem with them, they're a pretty good band. But they're following the freaking Beatles. Not only do those guys have a ton of amazing, really different songs, pretty much everybody loves them. When I told people I was going to an all-Beatles Concertition, everybody wanted in, even my mother-in-law. Who wants to listen to six hours of Green Day, my shithead nephew?

Frank
: I don't know, I think it's going to be an amazing show this year.

Seth
: And tell me Frank, how many Green Day tattoos do you have?

Frank
: ... Just the three.

Seth
: Aha!

Frank
: What? There are three guys in the band, you want me to get Billie Joe and not the other two?

Seth
: Hey, that reminds me, what are all the rhythm air guitarists from the four-member bands supposed to do at the Concertition? Experience the visceral thrill of pretending to be Jeff Matika?

Frank
: I guess.

Seth
: I'm just glad they're not charging $60 for the Concertition again, or I would have had to chokeslam somebody.

Frank
: Well, actually

Seth
: Stop, Frank. Just, just stop right there. Gimme your cell, I'm gonna call ahead and see if it's too late to get on the waiting list for the bonfire.

Frank: Yeah, fine.

Seth: [after a long pause] Say, can you pull over at the next Winn-Dixie? I'm gonna need some marshmallows.

This review is based on five hours of the Xbox 360 retail version of Green Day: Rock Band provided by EA.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.