March 2011 Update

March 14, 2011 at 9:19 pm | Posted in Update posts | Leave a comment
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Is been a long time since I’d gotten round to updating a few things here, so I’m glad I’ve finally gotten round to it.

General site is still quite basic, and will do until anything major happens. The site is basic, but it shows off what you all want to see and links you back to the correct people without upsetting anyone.

Also ran a quick check with review Splatterhouse and the format seems to stay put, so Ill be able to continue posting more than just ‘Click here’ for each review now which is good. At the bottom of each post sits a few sharing tools for you to use freely including Twitter/Facebook/Reddit/StumbleUpon and Digg, please dont forget to use these.

Other news reguarding the site and myself, is that Ill be looking to write a lot more often, mainly just to improve my writing in general and also sharpen my proof reading skills, as annoyingly they seemed to have dulled down. Not good If im going to get anywhere. Not only that but Ill be working on sharpening my interviewing skills also as more and more bands line up from my EA Artwerk friends.

Im looking out for perculiar named games as Im X Y Z and Q from having a review on each letter of the alphabet and I’ve also been using the Xbox Xperts quite a lot to help out where I can.

Shout out to the guys at Codemasters for sending me a Operation Flashpoint Red River T shirt, ill put a post up of that soon!

See you all soon.

Ladytron

March 14, 2011 at 9:02 pm | Posted in Articles, Music | Leave a comment
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Click here for full interview.

This week I got the chance to speak with Liverpool based four piece, Ladytron to see what their plans are for the upcoming year of 2011.

Mechanical R: How did Ladytron come together as a band?
Reuben:
We all met in Liverpool in 1999 through mutual friends and hanging out at the same bars and liking some of the same music, we just wanted to make music we all liked and no one was really making it.

MR: How far through the recording process of Ladytron 00-10 are you now?
R:
It’s all finished. There are 2 new tracks on there, including Ace of Hz. We’ve only just finished the 5th studio album as well

MR: Will this album differ from your previous work?
R:
I think so. The core of the music remains the same but it is a different sounding collection of songs. I think it sounds more expansive but understated, and there is more fragility to these songs. It’s definitely less ‘electro’.

MR: You have quite a unique sound as a band, how would you describe Ladytron to new listeners.
R:
Well we’ve been doing this for 10 years now we keep on reminding ourselves. When we first started, not many people listened to electronic music apart from dance music and since then, electronic sounds have crossed over in such a huge way, it seems like it was never any different. We were never pioneers or anything, but I think we were part of a new wave of interest in using synthesized sounds in independent music.

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Click here for full interview.

Young Dre

October 31, 2010 at 2:23 am | Posted in Articles | Leave a comment
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Click here to read full interview with Young Dre.

Ramin Djawadi Medal of Honor Composer

October 31, 2010 at 2:23 am | Posted in Articles | Leave a comment
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Click here to read full interview.

 

Hadouken Competition

April 29, 2010 at 2:46 pm | Posted in Articles, Competitions, Update posts | Leave a comment
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Check out the competition here

Hadouken Competition!

In conjunction with our interview with the UK sensations Hadouken who are the newest addition to EA Artwerks ever expanding talent roster. We have an exclusive giveaway for one lucky winner!

You could come walking away with both Hadouken albums, the newly released ‘For The Masses’ and their groundbreaking debut ‘Music For An Accellerated Culture’ along with a Hadouken T-shirt!

Two other runners up with make away with a shirt each! And it’s all by just answering a simple question!

Which drum and bass/dubstep artists helped produce Hadoukens newest album ‘For The Masses’?

Send your answers along with your Xboxliveaddicts account name in an email to mechrxbla(at)live(dot)co(dot)uk

Competition ends on 12th May. Any entries after this date will be void. UK residents and Xboxliveaddicts members are only eligible in this competition. Winners will be selected at random.

Hadouken!

April 20, 2010 at 3:19 am | Posted in Articles, Music | Leave a comment
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Click here for full interview.

Airbourne

February 19, 2010 at 11:11 pm | Posted in Articles | Leave a comment
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Read the interview on xbla

Yet another awesome exclusive from EA Artwerk, this time. Australian hailing rockers Airbourne had some time between tours to sit down and have a chat about video games and their new album. Bassist Justin Street answers…

Music

Mechanical R: When you first hit the scene, people very quickly related you to the sound of AC/DC has something like this had a good impact? Is it a sound you were going for? Or do you take it more as a compliment?
Justin Street: We definitely take it as a compliment, we love AC/DC they are one of the best bands of all time. We are influenced by them a lot but we just wanna make the best most hardest rocking music we can.

MR: How has the writing/recording process in your new album No Guts. No Glory. differed from Runnin’ Wild?
JS:
I think we had a much better idea of exactly what we wanted to do this time around. We knew how every thing should sound and how the songs should be put together so that they really rocked. We also did a lot of the writing on the road while touring over the last couple of years which made pre production a lot easier and when it was time to write the record we just had to put everything together.

MR: Have you actively seeked to produce an album with a different sound/style or has the fundamentals behind your music stayed the same for album #2?
JS:
The fundamentals and style have stayed the same, we never want to change that we always want to be a rock n roll band, we just wanted this album to sound bigger and better and be full of the best songs we could write.

MR: Do you have a favourite track from the new album? If so, why?
JS:
JS: My favorite track on the album is It Ain’t Over Till It’s Over because it is the fastest song we have ever written, and it’s so fun to play. I think it’s around 230 bpms

MR: What does 2010 have in store for Airbourne?
JS:
2010 will be a massive year of touring for us. We are going to tour every where, we are going to get back to all the places we have been and a lot of new places. We will probably go all through 2011 too.

Artwerk

MR: The list of video games featuring Airbourne tracks is getting quite long, how did you get involved in EA Artwerk to begin with?
JS:
We met the guys there and they really got what we were doing and really wanted to get behind us and help us achieve our goals.

MR: Are there any special benefits to being with Artwerk besides having your songs in video games?
JS:
We get loads of free games and stuff. You got to love free s**t.

MR: Do you feel having your songs featured on and (in Rock Bands case) playable, makes gaming a platform for music to get across to more and new fans?
JS:
Yeah it definitely helps get our music out to more people. It gets people into us and music in general that probably wouldn’t otherwise.

MR: Are there any EA titles you’d really like to feature in coming out soon?
JS:
The Medal Of Honor games are all awesome it would be cool blasting enemy soldiers to one of our own songs. Or Dantes Inferno smashing demons to a rock song. Rad.

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Far right- Justin Street.

Games

MR: Are you guy’s big gamers?
JS:
Yeah we love games, there are a lot of hours to waste away when on tour, video games make those hours fun.

MR: If so, which consoles and games are you currently playing?
JS:
We have got an X Box 360 and a Playstation 3 but I have been getting right in to Left For Dead 2 on X Box. It’s awesome love the gore.

MR: How does it feel to be playing a video game only to have one of your own tracks start playing?
JS:
We are on heaps I don’t even know how many i’ll be playing a random game and one of our songs will just come on it’s really cool.

MR: Are there any titles you’re looking forward to coming in 2010?
JS:
Battlefield Bad Company 2 looks awesome can’t wait to play that.

MR: Thanks for your time!

Find Airbournes tracks on EA Titles like Need For Speed: Undercover, Skate, Madden NFL 10 and downloadable tracks on Rock Band 1/2.

Airbournes new album ‘No Guts. No Glory.’ Is available via Roadrunner Records on March 8, 2010 and their latest single “No Way But the Hard Way” is available for download via iTunes now.

Datarock Interview

August 13, 2009 at 1:36 am | Posted in Music | Leave a comment
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Link to interview

Datarock are next EA Artwerk’s endevour to bring great music to the games that you cant put down. Datarock’s Fredrik tells us more what its like for the band…

Mechanical R: Can we have some history on Datarock?
Fredrik: The band was started back in 2000 by me, Ketil Mosnes, Tom Mæland and a guy from Boston called Kevin O’Brien. Kevin moved back to the states even before we even had a name, Tom left after a few years on the road, so me and Ketil kept going as a duo with Stig The Mystical Casio Operator on MT-64 until a few years ago. Nine years down the line we’re now a full on collective with around 50 associated members, close to 600 shows under our belt, two albums and a bunch of EP out, songs in tons of games, tv series, films and adds, we’ve got a top of the line management, label and publisher, and we’re laughing all the way to the bank.

Mech: Who are your main influences when it comes to writing and performing?
Fredrik: DEVO, Talking Heads, Laurie Anderson, Happy Mondays and Daft Punk. In that order.

Mech: For Datarock, what’s in store for 2009?
Fredrik: An insane international tour hitting 25 cities in the US alone and twice as many in Europe and Australia. We’ve already released videos for “Give It Up” and “True Stories” but next month you’ll get to see the video for our third single, “The Pretender”. It’s directed by the same guys that shot the classic “Revenge Of The Nerds”-inspired “Computer Camp Love” video. This time The Parallax Corporation took inspiration from the insane John Carpenter movie “They Live” from 10988. As with “Computer Camp Love” we shot it in Paris, and again it turn out pretty damn awasome. Check it out!

Mech: Can you tell us more about the new album Red, which was released earlier this month?
Fredrik: It’s the best thing to happen madkind since the release of the C64. No doubt about it! Which other album has songs in two FIFA games? Besides our debut, of course.

Mech: How long had you be recording/writing for this new album, was the process easy this time round?
Fredrik: These songs were actually written over 17 years and recorded over 4. Most of the tracks are brand new though. Writing them came pretty easy when we finally had time off from touring. We simply decided not to think about any kind of preassure and rather just make another album for us and our friend. And of course to make sure we’d have fun performing it live over the next couple of years. The positive feedback is still overwhelming, don’t get me wrong, but we didn’t really strive to please anyone but ourselves to be honest. That took a lot of stress out of the process…

Mech: What does being under Artwerks label mean for the band?
Fredrik: Well, it certainly helps reaching out to wast masses of people, and hey, it helps getting our songs plugged into some absolutely insane games. I’m really happy we were picked up, man, cause doing what we do, getting picked up by such a powerful force in this industry truly made a big impact on our career.

Mech: How did you get involved with EA and getting your songs into the games?
Fredrik: A guy working for EA in Norway sent Steve Schnur a few of our tracks, he dug it and sought us out at SXSW back in 2007. We sat down talking for hours and got to know the whole music team. We totally clicked and been friend ever since.

Mech: Were you interested in branching music and gaming together before you joined Artwerk?
Fredrik: We actually wrote our own game back in 2003 and we’ve always been joking about reaching out to the gaming indutry. We didn’t think anyone would care to work with us though, and never took it serious anyways, so it cought us by total surprise when Steve called us. I’m extreemely happy he did. Steve’s progressive you know. I guess he and his team has a special eye and ear for potential.

Mech: What’s it like to be able to play a video game and to have one of your own songs pop up in game?
Fredrik: Mindblowing and very, very weird.

Mech: Beyond just having songs in EA Games, what other benefits do you get being apart of Artwerks label?
Fredrik: Getting to be part of an exeptionally progressive group of highly talented people. It’s inspirational, educational, and very beneficial for all sides of what we do, working with innovative professionals such as these. Keep in mind, DATAROCK run a lable called YAP Records where we produce, release, distribute and partly manage 10 bands in addition to ourselves. Getting this kind of inside know-how gives us the upper hand in finding ways to deal with the ups and downs of the current state of the music indutry. Sounds boring, but we have a responsibility for all these artists and I’m happy to say we now have a fairly good understanding of how to survive in a world where most music consumers seam absurdly unwilling to pay for music – physical formats and digital files alike. Under these circumstances one has to focus on the positive aspects of the current situation and try look for a positiv and pregressiv approach. The guys at Artwerk has not only opened the worlds eyes to us, but aslo our eyes to lots of new world of opportunities. A grand but honest answer.

Mech: Do you guys play a lot of video games?
Fredrik: One more than the others, but there’s always one of us glued to some kind of console.

Mech: If so which are you all finding yourselves glued to currently?
Fredrik: Still FIFA’09, but soon to be swapped with FIFA’10.

Mech: Who’s the biggest gamer out of you both?
Fredrik: I’s have to say the K-man.

Mech: Are any of you looking forward to any releases coming soon?
Fredrik: The upcoming expansion pack for Sims™ 3, simply called DATAROCK. Nobody seams to know when though.

Datarocks latest album ‘Red’ release on ‘Young Aspiring Professionals’ (YAP) records.

Catch some of Datarock tracks in games including Need For Speed: Prostreet, Fifa 09 and the upcoming Fifa 10.

Pint Shot Riot Interview

August 13, 2009 at 1:30 am | Posted in Music | Leave a comment
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Link to interview

With EA Artwerk still preservering to bring the new and best music to video games, it was about time they got a UK band on the label right? Our Interview gets into the heads of Pint Shot Riot, an upcoming band who you’ll have no escape come the next few EA releases, so I get the chance to get some PSR love and Baby Dave held all the answers…

Artwerk

Mechanical R: How did you get involved with Artwerk and EA?
Baby Dave:
Artwerk were looking for new music in the U.K when they found us. Basically they sent a scout to check us out, liked what they found and the rest is history.

MR: What does being under Artwerks label mean for the band now?
BD:
It gives us an outlet for our music which is very important to us as musicians. Also it gives us the chance to be part of some exiting projects with a group of talented people, which is amazing.

MR: Do you feel that video games is now one of the best ways to get your music heard now that gaming is becoming much more open to other groups of people and becoming more casual?
BD:
I’d agree it gives us a chance to be heard by groups of people we might not necessarily have reached, and of course it gives gamers a chance to check out something they might not have thought of. I guess that is the beauty of putting new music and games together.

MR: Do you guys feel that Artwerk is a good move for bands especially with getting out there and generating more interest for PSR?
BD:
It has to be an excellent move for any establishing band.

MR: What’s to date the best part about being with Artwerk, besides having songs on video games?
BD:
Having songs on video games! I’ve been a massive gamer since forever so the thought of putting a really good game into your console, firing it up and then hearing your own music is a dream! That, and they gave us our own body weight in Xboxes each for signing the deal.

Gaming

MR: What games are you all playing the most recently?
BD:
I just put down NHL 09 to do this, loads of Fifa 09, Street fighter 4 and a bit of Mortal Kombat versus D.C universe. Anything 2 player with a bit of violence seems to work well for us generally. Me and mini are into guitar hero world tour at the moment too, perfect for a rhythm section returning from the pub!

MR: Out of the band, who is the most addicted gamer?
BD:
Its probably me. I live with a mate who is also a keen gamer and this has proved a slightly dangerous relationship in terms of gamer addiction!


Baby Dave, second from left

MR: What games can we expect to see some of your tracks making an appearance on?
BD:
Well, there is Sims 3 which is going to be amazing. We are also supplying the entrance music for a fighter on ‘Fight night round 4’ and we’re due to be supplying a song for Fifa 10. Fifa has been in my life for many years now so to become a part of it is a serious thrill, and it feels like an honour to be part of one of the all-time great games series.

MR: There’s still plenty of great games coming in the rest of 09, which ones are you most looking forward to?
BD:
I still have a few to catch up on, including the DLC for GTA4 but the one I’m waiting for is ‘UFC-undisputed. As I said, 2 player versus action plus violence equals a good gamer session for us usually! Also the Metallica guitar hero, and I’ve heard there could be a Beatles rock band, which would be ace.

Band/Music

MR: How did you come across the band name Pint Shot Riot?
BD:
Rocket came up with the name. He discovered that, using pre-emptive text on your mobile, if you text Pint, Shot and Riot comes up! We thought this was a stroke of genius as everyone in the country will have our name on their phone provided they text Pint!

MR: So far your still in the process of recording your debut album, could you tell us what to expect from your first LP?
BD:
We see our first album as the most precious thing we have ever made and we have been working as hard as we possibly can to make sure it is an amazing collection of songs. Its just an honest account of our lives and how it makes us feel, and people will take it as they will.

MR: Will we see any tours coming in line of your album launch?
BD:
We’re working on a few ideas for that at the moment so we will definitely be spreading the word when the time comes.

MR: 3 of you have nicknames, how did these come to become your stage names and why doesn’t Rob have one!
BD:
He does have one! His real name is Thelonius Monk but there was already an artist who was called that.

MR: Finally, will 2009 be the year for Pint Shot Riot?
BD:
100% certainty.

MR: Thanks a lot for your time guys!

Thanks for your time too – Baby Dave

Be sure to check out http://www.myspace.com/pintshotriot http://www.pintshotriot.co.uk for more information and music by PSR, keep your ears at the ready in the next few EA games to come.

Bang Camaro Interview

August 13, 2009 at 1:23 am | Posted in Music | Leave a comment
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The juggernaut group that is Bang Camaro are EA’s newest to the Artwerk label, I get some time with them to see what’s happening for them in the world of rock, and what they have in store for 2009.

Answers by- Alex & Bryn, lead guitars and Morgan Brown, lead vocals.

Mechanical R: What was the inspiration behind the name of your band, and what led to you having almost 20 people in your band?
BRYN: We were inspired by bands from our childhood that seemed larger than life. The sound of Skid Row and Def Leppard had that huge gang vocal sound that I’ve never heard a band make live. We wanted to sound like 300 crazed Spartans with cool guitars.

ALEX: Let me answer your question with a question: Have you ever wanted to grow a shaggy mustache, travel the world in a van, and record rock songs? Well, we did. The words BANG CAMARO conjure exactly that type of human adventure where grown men drive from to town to town leaving crying boyfriends and hot bartenders behind in their wake. Why 20 people? Why not?

Mech: Does having that many people make it easier for song writing and PR events?
ALEX: No. It makes it harder. Moving people from one place to another costs money. So, the financial obligations to make things happen are more demanding for us than most bands. That and most of the songwriting and PR events we attend serve alcohol. When you put 20 guys in a room with a case of beer and a bottle of vodka… well, let’s just say the wheels are going to fly off and that never makes anything easier for anyone.

BRYN: In some ways it makes PR a little easier for us though. It’s difficult not to notice 20+ rock guys wander into a Best Buy for an appearance.


Rock party. Alex far right, Bryn far left…

Mech: Any problems with having that many? I.E. Touring?
BRYN:
We own a 15 person van, so we do most of our national touring with 15 people. That includes 4 instrumentalists, a sound guy, and a bunch of singers. Think about how tough family trips were when you and your little sister were crammed in the back of your dad’s station wagon. Now multiply that times 100.

Mech: Your latest album, Bang Camaro II came out this year, the third to be exact, are there any major influences behind this album or any directions you’re trying to take?

ALEX: Actually, it is our second album. We called the collection BANG CAMARO II to remind us just in case we lost track. Our first record was recorded in a few bursts over a period of a year. We made our second record in a much shorter period of time. The things I wanted to emphasize were sound quality and better songwriting. Our songs are a little shorter and feature the choir in a more engaging way than our first record. Our vocalists had a hand in that. That’s probably why there are more lyrics this time around.

Mech: What’s in store for 2009 for Bang Camaro?
ALEX:
A lot of touring. The best way to experience BANG CAMARO is to see us live. You put 12 guys on a stage and turn everything up to unsafe listening volume, you’re going to have a good time.

BRYN: In addition, we have a track called “Revolution” that’s going to be in the upcoming Sims 3 game. We are working with Artwerk and EA on placing some more songs in games. Obviously, video games are a big reason that people know about us and we love it!

Mech: Any other bands to watch out for this year?
BRYN:
Jupiter One are pretty sweet. They also have had a few songs placed in video games too. Check them out on youtube. They have some great videos that they have made themselves. We just played a show with That Handsome Devil, who kick ass.

ALEX: I like Leslie. They’re a 3 piece rock band from Charleston, SC. They do a southern rock thing that reminds me of Tom Petty and Led Zeppelin. They’re ok. I’m watching out for them mostly because I probably owe them money.

Mech: What does being under Artwerk label mean for the band?

ALEX: Working with Artwerk, which is a publishing arm for EA Games, has helped us promote the band on the internet and video games. For instance, our track “Revolution” was just remixed by Chris Lord-Alge and will be featured in the upcoming The Sims 3 game.

BRYN: Video games are turning out to be a viable new option for bands getting their music out to people. We are proud that we are on the cutting edge of this new change in the music/gaming industry.

Mech: Has frequenting on some of the most popular music video games had a large effect in the direction of your Bang Camaro?
ALEX:
Absolutely. Having the exposure from being included in games like Rock Band and Guitar Hero 2 has helped us get on the road and play in front of audiences all around the country. Until recently, we were a band that didn’t have a record available in major record stores but we were still able to tour. We owe that, in part, to being featured in video games.

BRYN: You have to understand that we are not on a major label. Alex, Dave, and I run the record label out of our living room. The fact that you can go to a Best Buy in Minnesota, and find our CDs is mindblowing. I’m very proud that we have made it to this point doing everything ourselves, exactly how we wanted.

Mech: Its one thing to have your song appear in games whilst your playing but what’s it like to actually be able to play your own songs on games like Rock Band and Guitar Hero?
BRYN:
It’s fun until some fan at a ROCKBAND event totally destroys you at your own song. Some people out there are amazing at the game.

ALEX: It usually ends in heartbreak for me. I barely have the coordination to play our songs on a real guitar. The Rock Band controller baffles me. I’m more of a “SIMON” kind of guy.

Mech: Any plans to appear in any new games or ones you’d like to see your tracks in?

ALEX: Sure. We’ll be featured in The Sims 3 this year. There are some others but I’m probably not allowed to talk about them. I’m actually kidding. I just made that up.

BRYN: I’ve always been a fan of the FIFA line of games. HEY EA, YOU READING?!

Mech: Do you guys play a lot of video games or is it just a select few of you?

ALEX: Yeah, some of us play a lot of video games. Bryn likes Puzzle Quest. Bryn?

BRYN: We get some really heated Mario Kart games going on in the van. Other people will be trying to sleep, and then everyone will start screaming at each other. I also won the Superbowl as the Buffalo Bills in Madden 2008 on the last tour.


Bang Camaros gaming king, Morgan, bottom left…

Mech: There are a lot of you, which one of you claims the gaming crown?
BRYN:
Morgan is our resident video game maniac. That guys lives, sleeps, and breathes gaming. Justin Buckley, our sometimes-singer from Charleston is probably our best ROCKBAND player. Then again, he did fail out of a song while we were on the Lynyrd Skynyrd cruise, causing a lot of embarrassment. I always think Glen would be better than he is, because he doesn’t do much else… but he still gets destroyed in our Mario Kart battles.

MORGAN: Hey, guys! Yeah, I would count games among my many vices. If only I could make a game about my vices…

Mech: Are there any games out there currently than you can stop playing?
BRYN:
I am really excited by the success of Braid and indie gaming in general. I’ve been following Braid for years now, and I’m so excited for Jonathan Blow that it worked out well for him. I think it will give many closet game developers a lot more confidence.

MORGAN: I have to agree here. Competition for any industry is healthy, but the game industry really needs it right now. Fresh blood and underdogs will keep the money moving around; inject new ideas and possibilities, and light fires under the butts of the big-time developers who are skating on brand recognition and/or massive budgets. The indie developers and homebrew support will keep the gaming industry from cannibalizing itself. Plus, I fancy myself a designer, I work on my own projects, and I want to get back into developing games. Wait, what was the question? Oh, yes. I’m a pretty avid DotA (Warcraft 3 mod) player and I can never turn down a game of Smash Bros. Brawl (Wii) or Carcassonne (X-Box/Live).

Mech: Any games you’re looking forward coming out soon?
BRYN:
I would have to say that I’m excited about Harmonix’s Beatles game, because I work on it when I’m not touring. (I’m so self important!) Also, Dante’s Inferno! A while ago I worked on a game called “The Lost” at Irrational Games. It never came out, but it was loosely based on Dante’s Inferno, so I’m interested in seeing what they do with it. In addition, I can’t wait to see what new Xbox Live games come out. It’s a great platform that I’m very excited about.

MORGAN: GHOSTBUSTERS! I just saw the WonderCon footage of Resident Evil 5 and it looks pretty rad. I’m also looking forward to the next EA NHL game so I can lead the Red Wings to beat the snot out of the Avalanche all day, and–with any luck, land blow after blow to their domes with a Bang Camaro song blaring in the background. I used to like wrestling when I was little, so seeing a video of in-game Ted “The Million Dollar Man” DiBiase got me fired-up about WWE: Legends of Wrestling. And, of course, Punch-Out!!

Hear Bang Camaro in EA games including Guitar Hero II, Rock Band 1+2 and the upcoming Sims 3.

Bang Camaro II is available through Black Sword Records now.

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