Friday, November 30, 2007

Yeah: Daft Punk's Alive 2007


This review appears in today's Washington Square News.

Despite not releasing a proper album since 2005's "Human After All," Daft Punk has become more relevant in the last two years. In the midst of a successful 2007 tour, the Parisian house duo commemorated their hometown show in June, releasing a recording of the performance as Alive 2007.

Instead of a straightforward set list, the album features tracks welded together, as the group mixes two or more songs in each sequence. Opener "Robot Rock/Oh Yeah" begins by sampling "Robot" and "Human." As the rest of the instrumentals arrive, the two samples overlap. It's a fitting introduction to a performance that melds mechanical beats and distorted human voices, just as the duo performs in trademark robot suits.

"Touch It/Technologic" is built on the rhythmic chant of the former, while acknowledging the Busta Rhymes song "Touch It," which contains a sample of "Technologic." The prominence of vocals distinguishes Daft Punk from many of its peers, and the fact that other artists sample the material is a testament to Daft Punk's success. But instead of resting on their laurels (or laptops), the duo's bold mixing makes Alive 2007 an exciting experience, even for fans who have been listening to their songs over the last decade.

For those who missed out on Daft Punk's tour, Alive 2007 is a solid substitute. But we have to wait and see if they can match the quality of past work on their next album.

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Studio B hosts a record release party for Alive on December 7th. Daft Punk's Electroma will be screened at the Music Hall of Williamsburg on December 22nd.

MP3: Daft Punk - Robot Rock / Oh Yeah
MP3: Daft Punk - Around The World / Harder, Faster, Better, Stronger
MySpace: Daft Punk
Official Site: Daft Punk

1 comment:

Dan Hutchins said...

a good deal of your commentary on the samples, tracks, and techniques used in the live mix is inaccurate.

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