The Gadget: These illuminated LED drumsticks from The Ant Commandos light up when smacked, which give your Rock Band or Guitar Hero drumming a extra level of "light up stage show". They're made of plastic and are heavier than the wooden sticks, and are powered by two AA batteries (included). It's kinda goofy, but so is playing plastic instruments in your living room.
The Price: $US19
The Verdict: Pretty neat gimmick. The LEDs in these sticks aren't binary (on and off); rather they actually get brighter as you pound harder. It's a pretty neat effect for people watching you drum, but like playing the guitar, playing the piano, playing the flute or playing the skin flute, you're not looking at what your hands are doing, you're looking up at the notes.
These feel heavier than the wooden sticks that come with Rock Band and Rock Band 2. You'd think this would make the illuminated version more solid, but it only kind of does. The plastic jiggles ever-so-slightly when smacked against the pad, which makes a brittle sound that sort of makes you fear that it's going to snap in half and hit you in the face. That could be just us. When hot hitting anything, the sticks do feel more weighty.
At $US19 these TAC drumsticks are pretty cheap and make for a great set of backup drumsticks for Rock Band 2. What you probably don't want to do (at least if you're a beginner) is switch back and forth between these and the wooden sticks, because they'll mess up your feel for drumming while you're still picking up the intricacies. [TAC]