Certainly the biggest event in gaming this week is the release of Rockstar Games' Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, the follow-up to last year's incredibly successful Grand Theft Auto III that's set in a corrupt '80s-era city reminiscent of Miami, Florida. In addition to the release of the game itself, Rockstar has partnered up with Sony Music Entertainment and Epic Records to produce a seven-CD set of music soundtracks, featuring dozens of tracks that can be heard in the game. Themed after the seven different music stations heard in the game, this CD set should make for a desirable companion piece to the game's inevitable fans.
Each CD prominently displays a comic book-style drawing of the in-game radio station's DJ, along with that DJ's name and his or her radio station's name. The CDs themselves are also printed with the DJs' likenesses, and the liner notes included offer humorous descriptions of each character, along with some of those characters' personal thoughts on the genre of music represented on the disc. Discs contain about an hour of audio each, including full-length, uninterrupted versions of a dozen or so songs, as well as a couple of brief, humorous commentaries from the DJs themselves at the beginning and toward the middle and end. The CDs conclude with some of the tongue-in-cheek fictional radio advertisements heard on each station in the game.
Of further note, each CD in the set can be used as a key disc on the www.vicecityradio.com Web site to reveal a special cheat code for use in the game.
We have scanned images of the fronts and backs of each of the seven CDs. They and their track listings are as follows:
Volume 1 - Lazlow Presents V-ROCK
GTAIII fans will recognize Lazlow as the host of that game's talk radio station. In Vice City, Lazlow is a young and brash, longhaired wannabe rocker hosting the game's rock and metal station. Tracks on Volume 1 are:
Judas Priest - "You've Got Another Thing Comin'"
Motley Crue - "Too Young to Fall in Love"
Megadeth - "Peace Sells"
Rockstar's Lovefist - "Dangerous Bastard"
Autograph - "Turn Up the Radio"
Twisted Sister - "I Wanna Rock"
Ozzy Osbourne - "Bark at the Moon"
Anthrax - "Madhouse"
Iron Maiden - "2 Minutes to Midnight"
Slayer - "Raining Blood"
Tesla - "Cumin' Atcha Live"
David Lee Roth - "Yankee Rose"
Volume 2 - Adam First Presents WAVE 103
Adam First is the progressive, know-it-all host of Vice City's new wave station, WAVE 103, which features many hit songs that symbolize the '80s. They are as follows:
Frankie Goes to Hollywood - "Two Tribes"
Tears for Fears - "Pale Shelter"
Kim Wilde - "Kids in America"
Blondie - "Atomic"
A Flock of Seagulls - "I Ran (So Far Away)"
The Human League - "(Keep Feeling) Fascination"
Nena - "99 Luftballons"
The Psychadelic Furs - "Love My Way"
Spandau Ballet - "Gold"
Thomas Dolby - "Hyperactive!"
Romeo Void - "Never Say Never"
Corey Hart - "Sunglasses at Night"
Volume 3 - Fernando Presents EMOTION 98.3
Fernando is the ladies' man who hosts Vice City's light rock station, featuring the following sexy songs:
Toto - "Africa"
Jan Hammer - "Crockett's Theme"
John Waite - "Missing You"
Cutting Crew - " (I Just) Died in Your Arms"
Foreigner - "Waiting for a Girl Like You"
Mr. Mister - "Broken Wings"
Roxy Music - "More Than This"
Squeeze - "Tempted"
Reo Speedwagon - "Keep on Loving You"
Nightranger - "Sister Christian"
Luther Vandross - "Never Too Much"
Kate Bush - "Wow"
Volume 4 - Toni Presents FLASH FM
The stylish Toni hosts Flash FM, featuring Vice City's top-40 hits, including:
Hall & Oates - "Out of Touch"
Electric Light Orchestra - "Four Little Diamonds"
Michael Jackson - "Billie Jean"
The Outfield - "Your Love"
Talk Talk - "Life's What You Make It"
Bryan Adams - "Run to You"
Wang Chung - "Dance Hall Days"
Go West - "Call Me"
Lionel Richie - "Running With the Night"
Laura Branigan - "Self Control"
INXS - "Kiss the Dirt (Falling Down the Mountain)"
Yes - "Owner of a Lonely Heart"
Volume 5 - Mr. Magic Presents WILDSTYLE Pirate Radio
Get down with Mr. Magic to the underground rap and hip-hop beats of Wildstyle Pirate Radio:
Herbie Hancock - "Rockit"
Grandmaster Flash + The Furious Five - "The Message"
Zapp + Roger - "More Bounce to the Ounce"
Davy Dmx - "One for the Treble"
Mantronix - "Bassline"
Man Parrish - "Hip Hop Be Bop (Don't Stop)"
Hashim - "Al-Naafiysh (The Soul)"
Cybotron - "Clear"
Afrika Bambaataa + The Soulsonic Force - "Looking for the Perfect Beat"
Run-DMC - "Rock Box"
Kurtis Blow - "The Breaks"
Whodini - "Magic's Wand"
Volume 6 - Oliver "Ladykiller" Biscuit Presents FEVER 105
The infinitely smooth Oliver Biscuit hosts FEVER 105 and its selection of hot R&B tunes that would make anyone's knees buckle. Tracks include:
Michael Jackson - "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'"
The Pointer Sisters - "Automatic"
Fat Larry's Band - "Act Like You Know"
Mtume - "Juicy Fruit"
Teena Marie - "Behind the Groove"
Oliver Cheatham - "Get Down Saturday Night"
Rick James - "Ghetto Life"
Evelyn "Champagne" King - "Shame"
Mary Jane Girls - "All Night Long"
Kool & The Gang - "Summer Madness"
Rene & Angela - "I'll Be Good"
Whispers - "And the Beat Goes On"
Volume 7 - Pepe Presents Espantoso
Pepe keeps it real on Vice City's most popular Spanish-language station, which includes many of the Latin hits of the era:
Deodato - "Super Staut"
Cachau - "A Gozar Con Mi Combo"
Mongo Santamaria - "Me and You Baby (Picao Y Tostao) "
Machito and His Afro-Cuban Orchestra - "Mambo Mucho Mambo"
Xavier Cugat and His Orchestra - "Jamay"
Mongo Santamaria - "Mama Papa Tu"
Unaesta - "La Vida Es Una Lenteja"
Lonnie Liston Smith - "Expansions"
Irahere - "Aguanile"
Beny More - "Maracaibo Oriento"
Deodato - "Latin Flute"
Tito Puente - "Mambo Gozon"
Each CD is professionally produced and visually compelling, and the selections of songs on many of the discs represent a veritable who's who of '80s-era pop music. This CD set is therefore notable not just because it offers one of the biggest assortments of licensed music ever selected for a video game, but also because this is the first major mainstream release of a video game sound track in the United States. Each disc contained in the series is available separately for a retail price of $13.98, and the entire seven-CD set is available for a retail price of $49.98.
For more information on Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, read our full review.