While you’ve been out about town knocking back Red Bulls and vodka at an alarming rate, wrapping your arms around ladies in tube tops and snorting precious concoctions of lidocaine and laundry detergent, Daft Punk was down in the basement mixing up a new kind of medicine. Let’s call it “The New Disco.”
Four years ago, Daft Punk branded its pop-meets-punk-on-their-dance-floor vibe with an ’80s logo, sent it “Around the World,” and have since watched several dozen cheap imitators relish only one-hit success (“La la la la la”). Daft Punk takes its various formulas of success – glittery ’80s rock guitars, solid beats, hearty basslines, sci-fi film sound effects, etc. – and rearranges the parts. For better, there’s the funk-infused “Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger,” “High Life” and “Something About Us.” For worse, there’s “Digital Love,” “Superheroes” and “Veridis Quo,” all of which come across as derivative theme music to bad ’80s TV shows. Other tracks such as “Short Circuit” and “Cresendolls” sound interesting on the first listen but quickly become tired after a fourth or fifth listen.
Although it’s commendable that Daft Punk seeks new horizons, Discovery shows that sometimes the new terrain it discovers is worse than where it began. For fans of new sounds in house (or at least those who just need to own “One More Time” on CD), Discovery is worth the purchase.