If you’ve been following the site, you already know how I fell about Beatles: Rock Band (you can see my review here…). Ultimately it was a fine improvement on the franchise, although the music selection won’t be for everyone. If you don’t care for The Beatles, you won’t care for the game. But if you are even a casual fan, it’s one title you’ll need in your library. That brings us to now (well, a couple of weeks ago; I’m still working through my review backlog). One of The Beatles most popular albums was Abbey Road. Even though the retail disk shipped with some of the songs from the album, not everything was on there. For the first DLC pack, the team at Harmonix decided to make the other 8 songs available including the 16 minute Abbey Road Medley. So, is it worth the $17 purchase?
As it was with the full game, the answer to that question will depend a lot on how you feel about The Beatles & their music catalog. There’s a lot of content here, from the a-fore mentioned 16 minute medley to the obscenely short (& in my opinion a waste of time) Her Majesty. The thing is, I doubt casual fans have heard many of these songs (if any at all). I think $17 will be a tough sell fo any DLC let alone for content a lot of folks (read: casual fans) won’t be sure about…
With that said, I did have fun with it. The way it’s divided up is there are 3 singles & the medley. The medley can be played as a whole 16 minute song or divided up into 5 different parts in anywhere from 1 to 3 song sets. I really liked Maxwell’s Silver Hammer, which is a quirky little tune with visuals to match. Oh! Darling reminded me of the early Jackson 5 ballads (coincidentally from the same time period: the late 1960’s). And, as a drummer, I really like Golden Slumbers just for the frequent tempo changes alone.
Of course, what I consider one of the signatures of Beatles: Rock Band is the visual flair that really brings home the time period & the thoughts & feelings of the band itself. In this pack, all the songs take place in Abbey Road Studios (where the band recorded the album). But, several of the tracks will drift off into dreamland taking the Fab Four into a sunny landscape (Sun King) or a huge field of grass (You Never Give Me Your Money).
Several other songs round out the track pack including Because (a song that has no drumming in it at all), Polythene Pam, & Her Majesty (a track that’s only 30 seconds long; basically it’s only solo vocals, an acoustic guitar & 2 notes on drums). But, the coup de grace for me was the Abbey Road Medley. I have played long songs before (7 or 8 minutes) & I would get antsy & start watching the clock by the time I was half way through it. The medley was different though. The notes were spaced out in such a way that I was 15 minutes in before I realized how long I had been playing it. I can’t say it was the music that got me as I’m not much of a fan of any of the songs. It was just designed very well. Kudos to Harmonix for taking something that could have been the bane of the entire set list & turned it into something fun & interesting!
I should shoot this one down. I mean, as I said, the selection here is some of the lesser known material. Anyone who is still undecided on picking up the game won’t be persuaded by the Abbey Road DLC (especially with the high price point). But, if you already have Beatles: Rock Band, It’s a safe bet that you’ll like something if not everything from this pack (especially the medley). Next up, Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band…
I have a Female Beatles Rock Band Avatar shirt codes in case anyone needs one. Enjoy!