Rock band The Romantics have filed suit against Harmonix, Red Octane and Wavegroup Sound for the cover version of "What I Like About You", included in Guitar Hero Encore: Rocks the 80s, reports Billboard. The suit claims that the re-recording of the group's 1980 hit is "virtually indistinguishable from the authentic version" and that consumers may become confused into believing the original recording was used.
This would, I assume, lead to many disoriented gamers who might simply go mad from attempting to process the information and cause injury.The Romantics are, of course, seeking compensatory and punitive damages but specific dollar amounts aren't listed. Billboard writes that the band may have a case, citing "right of publicity" but counters that only those who are "very well known" may benefit from suing imitators.
If the court were to rule in the favour of the band, it could spell further trouble for parties involved in the Guitar Hero and Rock Band series in the form of lawsuits from other bands hungry for cash. The potential silver lining? Steering away from cover versions, including only master tracks. That silver lining comes with a bit of tin, however, as there are cases where those master tracks are simply no longer available, potentially limiting future track listings.
Regardless of the outcome, it's all utterly unromantic.
The Romantics Sue Activision Over 'Guitar Hero' [Billboard - thanks, Damon!]