Are you serious about your Rock Band drumming? Are you serious enough that you feel the need, or just want to try running double bass pedals?
Roadie, the people behind my favorite after-market pedal, have brought an interesting new device to market that promises to give you the ‘true’ double-kick experience.
Does it work? Is it what you’re really looking for?
Read the review inside.
If you’re a fan of playing drums in Rock Band, and you’re anything like me, you’ve always wanted to try running two kick pedals.
My attempts in the past have covered everything from using a headphone splitter (not so good, if one pedal is in the down position, the other doesn’t work) to using the Blockhead Rhythm Maker petal with built-in jack for another pedal (still not so good, same problem), to attempting my own solder job (REALLY not good).
Roadie has released a reasonably priced alternative to give you the functionality you want… but the question is, do you really want two pedals?
The device is simple enough: a single black box with inputs for two pedals and an output to your drum set. The setup requires a 9-volt battery (included), and the manufacturer has thoughtfully also included a power switch, so that you can turn it off when it’s not in use.
The coupler works exactly as advertised, and it works with any Rock Band compatible pedal. There is also a package that includes TWO Roadie pedals with the coupler, for maximum rockage. [LINKS BELOW]
One problem I found with the setup was when I attached it to my ION kit. JUST TO BE CLEAR, THIS WAS ONLY A PROBLEM WITH THE ION DRUM KIT, THE STOCK ROCK BAND 1 AND 2 KITS DO NOT HAVE THIS PROBLEM. The stock cable that is included with the coupler is 1/4″ mono to 1/8″ stereo. The ION is strictly 1/4″ cabling. No worries, I just hooked up the ION 1/4″ stereo to stereo cable. The ION didn’t recognize that configuration. By swapping out that cable for a 1/4″ stereo to mono cable, the pedals worked flawlessly, but strangely, the D-Pad on the ION doesn’t work anymore.
I just keep a controller handy, and it’s no big deal to me… but if you are using the ION kit, you should be aware of the problem.
Once I started using the double-bass, I realized it was more difficult than I thought it would be. I blame my own lack of coordination. My scores dropped instantly on most songs, while other songs that are very kick intensive, as well as being repetitious, became ridiculously easy.
‘Painkiller’ is a perfect example. For me, the song was only difficult because my right leg would wear out by the end of the song. Using two pedals eliminates fatigue entirely.
I’ve gone back, ‘relearning’ some of the easier songs on Expert, and I can see that with just a LITTLE practice, I’ll be in a better position than before I got the extra pedal… just don’t expect to be a double-kick assassin on your first try.
Overall, if you’re playing a lot of Rock Band drums on Expert, and you want to take your playing to the next level… this is a no-brainer. BUY IT.
If you find yourself only playing Rock Band at parties, or you’re still struggling to play the earlier songs on Hard… you may want to wait.
Serious Rock Band sociopaths are the only ones who need this… but they DO need it.