Our 10 Favourite Tracks by Daft Punk!
News came this week in an incredibly vague but very Daft Punk way that the French house and techno duo were to split up following a 28 year career and whilst like most we are sad that it has ended let's take this moment to enjoy the memories and the great music so here are our favourite tracks from the immortal Daft Punk.
This is an underrated classic and featured on Daft Punk’s 1996 release of Da Funk for Virgin records, the song never charted but has the honour of being own by more people than b
ought Homework as it was never on the album with Thomas Bangalter, quoted as saying:
“Because it is a b-side to "Da Funk". It was never intended to be on the album, and in fact, "Da Funk" as a single has sold more units than Homework, so more people own it anyways than they would if it had been on the album. It is basically used to make the single a double-feature.”
The thirteenth track from the Tron: Legacy Soundtrack, before we get into the track if you were looking to create a great futuristic movie soundtrack for a futuristic film like the Tron sequel then mine and Disney’s first port of call was the French duo Daft Punk.
The song itself plays at the End of Line Club in which Daft Punk make a cameo appearance as they are the clubs DJs, the song plays when the action starts as Flynn starts fighting.
This song has two music videos one is the promotional video for Tron: Legacy showcasing the song over the movie clip and the other if the official Daft Punk video, released later.
Digital Love (2001)
The third track from the Daft Punk’s second album Discovery with lyrics written by DJ Sneak and performed by Daft Punk themselves. The song features a sample of “I Love You More” by George Duke.
The track is best known for the solo on its second half, which Thomas Bangalter revealed that the solo was created using a mixture of element and aided by music sequencers.
“No one plays solos in their songs anymore, but we wanted to include some on the album."
The track reached number 14 in the UK top 40 and number 8 in the UK dance chart.
High Life (2001)
From the duo’s second album Discovery when I hear this track, I’m reminded of all the days sat in the school playground listening to EDM tracks like this one many years after Discovery had been released, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and whilst the copycats are great, they pale in comparison with the original.
This song caused a debate on the internet as to where the sample used in this track came from, however it is believed to be a small sample of the Tavares track “Break Down for Love”.
Like all songs from the Discovery album, it has a video featuring a scene from the Daft Punk anime film Insterstella 5555: The 5tory of the 5ecret 5tar 5ystem which was made by Toei animation the company behind One Piece, Digimon and Dragon Ball.
Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger (2001)
The song from Daft Punk’s second album Discovery, is built around a “bouncy” keyboard riff sampled from the 1979 Edwin Birdsong track “Cola Bottle Baby”. According to Birdsong he asked Daft Punk where they found his music and they said according to the Birdsong they were “going through the bins and it popped out.”
In 2016, the HuffPost’s Daniel Jenkins wrote "For all the gifts electronic deities Daft Punk have bestowed upon pop music, no track feels quite as iconic or ingenious as 'Harder Better Faster Stronger' ... Fifteen years on from its release and it’s hard to think of a dance track that’s as prominent in popular culture or influential to modern electronic music."
Also it was sampled by Kanye West on his hit "Stronger" with Daft Punk getting a songwriting credit.
The track reached number 3 in the UK dance chart matching its place in the US Dance Club Songs Billboard chart and reached number 25 in the UK top 40.
Robot Rock (2005)
This track which was described by one magazine “a poor man’s aerodynamic” and yes, it is repetitive that statement does not do this track justice.
Taken from the album Human After All as the lead single, it features a sample of the Breakwater song “Release the beast”. Bangalter said the track “is a tribute to the power of heavy rock chords. In a way I think we were exploring if you can take the essence of rock—that power—and mix it with dance. But to take a riff and loop it is to explore the core of rock."
It had only moderate success compared to previous tracks reaching number 32 in the UK top 40 although it did get to number 1 in the UK dance chart, however I feel that the album it’s on must be seen not heard, to fully appreciate what Daft Punk were going for so go watch any clips from YouTube.
Get Lucky (2013)
The lead single from the duo’s fourth album Random Access Memories, it marked a return to form following the perceived failure of Human After All.
“Get Lucky” is the culmination of a friendship that began in 1997 with music icon Nile Rodgers, when Rodgers attended a listening party for the duo’s first album. Daft Punk has always wanted to collaborate with Rodgers, but the duo schedule never lined up with that of Rodgers.
Sidenote here that Random Access Memories was recorded at the Electric Lady Studio in New York City where Chic has recorded their first single.
Pharell Williams involvement reportedly goes back to a joke he made to the duo saying, “If you just want me to play tambourine, I’ll do that.” The duo would meet Williams later in Paris to discuss his involvement in the track.
“Get Lucky” is composed in the key of F-sharp minor and with a tempo of 116 beats per minute, Williams would say in an interview the chorus and title does not simply refer to a sexual act, but to the fortune of meeting with and immediately connecting to someone.
The track would go to reach number 2 in the Billboard Hot 100 and number 1 in both the UK dance and top 40 charts. It also won a Grammy for record of the year at the 56th Grammy’s in 2014.
Around The World (1997)
Released on the duo debut album Homework and as a single the same year as the release of Homework in 1997. The track is simply known around the world for three simple words said 144 times in the album version and 80 for the radio edit.
Daft Punk recalled that the song "was like making a Chic record with a talk box and just playing the bass on the synthesizer".
Speaking for Chic if you listen to the track, you can hear the similarity of the baseline in “Around The World” and the Chic song “Good Times”.
The steady baseline and robotic vocals of “Around The World” landed Daft Punk another spot at the top of the UK Dance Track and number 5 in the UK top 41 also placing at 61 in the Billboard Hot 100.
Da Funk (1995)
Originally released in 1995 under Soma Recordings and then again in 1996 under Virgin Records alongside the brilliant B-side “Musique”, the track also appears on Daft Punk’s first album Homework.
The track is an instrumental that samples Bounce, Rock, Skate, Roll by Vaughan Mason & Crew and Barry White’s “I’m Gonna Love You Just A Little More, Baby”.
In an interview with Swedish magazine Pop Bangalter revealed that “Da Funk” was made after listening to west coast G-Funk for weeks
"It was around the time Warren G.'s "Regulate" was released and we wanted to make some sort of gangsta-rap and tried to murk our sounds as much as possible. However, no one has ever compared it too hip-hop. We've heard that the drums sound like Queen and The Clash, the melody is reminiscent of Giorgio Moroder, and the synthesizers sound like electro and thousands of other comparisons. No one agree with us that it sounds like hip-hop"
It was Daft Punk’s first commercial hit reaching number 1 in the UK dance chart and 7 in the UK top 40.
One More Time (2000)
This is it then the song voted by Mixmag as the greatest dance track ever made in 2013 and I got to be honest they’re right there is no other dance track better than this it truly is one of the best tracks ever made.
Completed as early as 1998 it waited patiently on the shelf for Daft Punk’s second album Discovery, the track prominent vocals are provided by American Dj and producer Romanthony, it was Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo who said, “We thought the funkiness of his voice fitted the funkiness of the music” Those vocals feature heavy processing and use of auto tune.
Thomas Bangalter stated “A lot of people complain about musicians using Auto-Tune. It reminds me of the late 70s when musicians in France tried to ban the synthesizer, what they didn’t see was that you could use those tools in a new way instead of just replacing the instruments that came before.”
The video for the track features anime scenes that would later become Daft Punk’s own anime film Interstella 5555: The 5tory of the 5ecret 5tar 5ystem.
This song reached number 1 in the UK Dance and the US Dance Club Songs charts, going on to reach number 2 in the UK top 40.
Thanks for all those memories and for helping me wear out a few cassette tapes Daft Punk.
Let us know your favourite Daft Punk songs and share your favourite memories of the Duo in the comments below.