One of my favorite musical artists since middle school is the almighty kings of French House, electronic, and straight up techno music, Daft Punk. And finally, for the first time since my 8th grade ears beheld ‘Human After All’, the robots have came out with a new studio album. The album, Random Access Memories, is just what you’d expect from Daft Punk…in that it is nothing you’d expect from them. You see, Daft Punk has a way of testing the boundaries of electronic music, and no one album they’ve put out has sounded remotely the same. From rave/house/techno to pop/house to rock/electronic, they have continued to push these boundaries. With this new album comes a mix of disco, R&B, Jazz, and Rock. It is hardly electronic, which has already divided many listeners. Fans love it, critics are benine, and the average listener is EXTREMELY confused. In this song by song review I will analyze this unique sound crafted by the most unique of bands and give my impression. Keep in mind this is NOT a techno/electronic album. Therefore I won’t be reviewing it as one/holding it to such standards.
1. Give Life Back To Music - 8/10. Very funky. Great way to start the album
2. The Game Of Love - 7/10. A slower song, but great to chill out to. Very visual, very relaxing
3. Giorgio By Moroder - 10/10. Beautiful. Probably the best song on the album. It’s amazing how it transforms from a simple synth melody to a beautiful ballad.
4. Within - 7/10. Nothing too special, but I dig the chorus.
5. Instant Crush [Feat. Julian Casablancas] - 7/10. Once again nothing amazing but a nice popish song to listen to.
6. Lose Yourself To Dance [Feat. Pharrell Williams] - 9.5. Ohhhhh snap, this song. This is pure funk. When Nile Rogers, Pharrell, and Daft Punk combine it’s golden. Easily one of the best songs on the album. PERPETUAL REPEAT STATUS.
7. Touch [Feat. Paul Williams] - 8/10. I feel this was meant to be as grand as Giorgio, however it unfortunately is just lacking something. Maybe it’s the vocals, the structure, not sure. It has potential and is a really good song, however it’s not one of the best the album has to offer.
8. Get Lucky [Feat. Pharrell Williams] - 10/10. I have developed a major, major emotional attachment to this song long before I got my hands on this album this morning. I stayed up late to watch a 15 second clip of this song in a commercial for SNL twice. I scowered the internet for leaks, for any videos (Coachella, SNL, etc.) that revealed just a tiny bit more of this song. And when it was released as a single about a month ago, I was hooked. This is already my summer song. It’s amazing, it’s on pace to being one of my favorite DP songs of all time. ‘One More Time’ better watch out, this song is right behind. Seriously though, only good memories can come when listening to this song. I freaking love it.
9. Beyond - 6/10. Eh.
10. Motherboard - 6/10. Ehh.
11. Fragments Of Time [Feat. Todd Edwards] - 7/10. Some serious Steely Dan influence here. I know A LOT of people won’t like this song, but I like Steely Dan. I know, I’m weird like that. it’s a cool song, it’s cool in the sense that it’s cool to hear Daft Punk have a little Rock/Jazz in them (and can pull it off).
12. Doin’ It Right [Feat. Panda Bear] - 9/10. I have no clue why, I know it’s not amazing, but I REALLY like this song.
13. Contact - 9/10. A fitting closure to the album. Very heavy.
Random Access Memories is NOT an electronic album. It is not the Daft Punk you grew up with. This is the type of album you either love or hate. I’ve heard it all. Many many people are beyond confused. It’s not the type of album to blast in the club, it plays (oddly enough) like a Beatles or Steely Dan album. There’s no doubt this will (and already has) turned away a lot of listeners. So what’s my opinion? While it has it’s obvious flaws and lackluster filler songs (especially late in the album), overall Random Access Memories is a fair homage to the great music of the 70s. To put it in perspective, I believe it is tied for their second best album (counting Tron I suppose). I give it an 8/10. I’ve been waiting for this f**king thing for 7 years. It’s good to finally have you back Daft Punk :)
Homework - 8/10
Discovery - 10/10
Human After All - 7/10
Tron Legacy Soundtrack - 7.5/10
RANDOM ACCESS MEMORIES - 8/10