The Rocksmith event wasn’t just all fun and games (who are we kidding?!). We caught up with rockers Bury Tomorrow whilst we were there to discuss Rocksmith, guitars and the state of video games these days.
How did you get involved with Rocksmith?
Davyd: Basically we got a call one day and they were like “do you like videogames?” And we was like, “yeah we love videogames”. And they went “Do you like playing instruments?” And we was like, “You know what, we like that as well”. And it was kinda like the two things came together as one and it was like “how’d you like to go play instruments on a video game?”
Jason: And we was like “no way that’s impossible, that’s not a real thing!”
Davyd: We jumped at the chance. They just asked us down and we happily obliged.
Jason: We’re playing Rocksmith instead of GTA V so that’s how much we love it.
Which track of your tracks would you put on Rocksmith?
Davyd: We had to pick one of the fan favourites. We could do Lionheart, Royal Blood and Sceptres. I think if we was to probably pick one, we’d pick Lionheart cause it’s the first song of this album and I think more people would download that track than any others. I’d like to see Sceptres on there cause I think it would be fun for people to learn cause I know how fun it is to play it live.
Jason: For me it would be Lionheart to be fair. It’s my favourite song. I don’t think it matters what song, it’s cool either way. This basically makes Guitar Hero look like shit.
Do you think Rocksmith will play a role with bands in the future?
Jason: This is less like a game and more like a utility. Yes, it has the arcade games on there, but it’s not far away from me picking up my Macbook and recording some songs on it.
Davyd: If you’re at home and you wanna learn guitar surely this is a better way to do it, than spending £200-£300 on a really crap combo amp.
Jason: It’s cost effective for sure. For what it is I’m guessing it’s gonna be about £60. A boxset of GTA is about £55, and you complete it in 3 weeks and you’re done with it. You’re gonna keep going back to this.
Davyd: If the downloadable content is good and continuous. They could do it like single releases. On Xbox Live. So like, in two weeks time you can pre-order this downloadable pack by this band or this band. If they had it like a library that’d be sick.
Jason: When you’re playing a game, you get good at it and obviously you work at it, whereas when you’re playing an instrument, it’s like it kinda never gets old. Even when you can play one song on it, it’s not like you’re done with it. You’d go back and play it again cause you’re playing guitar. And you can improvise and stuff.
Davyd: If you’re the sort of person who would jam to a song anyway, and learn it, this is literally like the next progression of that. When I’ve looked at tabs before and played along, I’m like something doesn’t quite sound right on this. There’s always something that isn’t quite right with it and I think that’s what’s wicked about this.
Jason: It’s good for a young generation of what 7 to 15 year olds. Cause for me I’ve already learnt guitar, I’ve picked up my own way of playing and ways to remember things, so for me, the whole colour thing is a bit confusing. Whereas, if this hits a younger age group, they’ll never know any different.
Davyd: I think if you’ve never played guitar before and you wanted to play guitar, then this is definitely a good way to go. It will make kids play instead of not play.
Can you see video games being used much more in the future in the music industry?
Davyd: I think the thing is with games, people want innovation and as long as innovation isn’t too far by each step. I don’t think you could’ve had this game if you hadn’t had RockBand and Guitar Hero. Because that was like entry level. As this has shown, if you’re gonna do this, you’ve gotta do it in a way that makes you want to carry on and this does. But you can’t go too heavy on the learning element. One of the biggest flops in recent years in games, is fitness games for stuff like the Wii or Kinect because learning is fine, but none of us essentially wanna do it.
Jason: In the future there will be more like this and utilities on there. Even Xbox’s and PlayStation’s themselves are becoming less about being a games console and more about being a utility in a family environment. When I played that, I first thought, less of a game more of a utility, which Xbox, that’s what it’s all about. I definitely think over the next 10 years there’ll be more and more things for not just music, but everything really. Can definitely change and shape the way people use a console. I think games wise, a lot of the markets are full now.
What’s your favourite track from either Rocksmith game?
Jason: I literally just found Red Fang on there. The song ‘Wires’. I’m a massive Red Fang fan, so that was great to come across that. I was super stoked.
Davyd: I found some Rise Against on there and I think they must have a monopoly with Xbox because they get used on every instrument game on the planet. I don’t mind however, cause I love Rise Against.
Jason: Especially with alternative music when it comes to like mainstream games, but most people would stick to things they know. But with this you can play stuff you don’t know or you’ve not thought about playing before
Davyd: I played ‘Shove It’ by Deftones, which was cool.
What other features would you like to see on Rocksmith?
Davyd: If the jam session could be turned into a live feature over Xbox live and you could jam with people in other parts of the country or world even that would be cool.
Do you think games like Rocksmith are helping Rock music reach the mainstream again?
Jason: Yeah I do. Anybody can enjoy games and anybody can enjoy music, so yeah anything that can get you out more people is always good
Davyd: and let’s face it, some pop stuff isn’t as complicated as rock and metal and so as you progress through the game; even if you’re not into it, you will progress onto the rock and metal because the harder stuff to play. So in order to test yourself you’re gonna wanna play the hardest stuff that the game can throw at you. And realistically, your solos, your shredding, you’re essential more riffage comes from your rock and metal stuff. There has been many a game that I haven’t liked a song when I’ve been playing, but then after a while you like it. You might not know a song, but when you start playing it and practising it and you’re learning it, chances are you’re gonna like it.
What’s your dream track that you’d like to see on Rocksmith?
Davyd: I’d like a Slipknot track on there. I’d like something like Before I Forget, or Eyeless
Jason: I think it’s be really cool to put something like the new Born of Osiris cause that’s really technical.
Davyd: Some Rolo Tomassi on there, so people have no idea what’s going on
Jason: Some Sikth on there.