Daft Punk end the magic

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After 28 years of their unique electro-pop sound, the phenomenon that was Daft Punk is no more. On February 22nd, they broadcast the self-destruction on YouTube of "one of the most influential and popular groups to have emerged in the last 30 years". 

 

" Daft punky thrash "

Thomas Bangalter (46) and Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo (47) met as teenagers at the Lycée Carnot in Paris, going on to found the rock band, Darlin', in 1987. In 1993, the British magazine Melody Maker called their songs a “bizarre fuzz-guitar reading of The Beach Boys” and “daft punky thrash”. The pair took the "Daft Punk" review to heart and turned to electro-pop. Their style is inspired by the commercial, accessible and catchy Eurodance themes of the 90s, mixing house, disco, rap, synthesized riffs and samples. It also integrates the French underground electronica of the time with more aesthetic and innovative sounds. Helped at the beginning by Daniel Vangarde, Thomas's father and producer-composer of variety shows, the duo often recorded in the “Gang” studios, which were used by Jean-Michel Jarre in particular. There’s no doubting his influence on the pair. 

"We want to break our own rules and reinvent ourselves"

Four LPs in 28 years

"Untitled 18", another Darlin' track covering David Bowie's "Starman", marked the beginning of their electro experimentation. It found form on their first album "Homework" in 1997, whose singles "Alive", "Da Funk" and "Around the World" propelled Daft Punk to international recognition. The band waited until 2001 to release “Discovery”, featuring Grammy Award Winning “Harder Better Faster” and “One More Time”. This was followed by “Human After All” (2005) and then “Random Access Memories” (2013). Recorded without digital equipment, the latter album features Nile Rodgers of Chic, Pharrell Williams, and Giorgio Moroder, among others. It went on to receive five Grammy Awards, including Recording Of The Year with "Get Lucky", sung by Pharrell Williams.

 

Surprise – Break boundaries - Reinvent

Between each release, the two artists pursued their solo careers featuring musical or cinematographic projects: "We want to surprise ourselves, we want to break our own rules and reinvent ourselves," they stated in 2013. In 2002, Bangalter composed the soundtrack for the film "Irreversible" - with Vincent Cassel and Monica Bellucci - and co-wrote the script for "Interstella 5555", an anime based on "Discovery". The couple wrote and directed "Daft Punk's Electroma", a feature film, which won the Camera d'Or at Cannes in 2006, and the soundtrack of the film "Tron: Legacy" in 2010. 

Among the tributes paid after the announcement of their separation, the "Pitchfork" website notes that "beyond the singles, their visual identity, their interstellar mystique and their philosophy of party music, they have inspired generations of artists across all genres".