Monday, January 31, 2005

Daft Punk Really Is Human After All...

It's been about three years since Daft Punk's great album Discovery was released. It was a collection of very good, retro-style dance/pop music. It also served as the backdrop for a bold music video experiment...a full-length anime movie made in collaboration with the great Leiji Matsumoto. Discovery was the album in which made me like Daft Punk. Apart from the song "Around The World," I hadn't heard much from them before Discovery came out. I didn't hear their first album Homework until after I heard Discovery.

Now comes Daft Punk's new album Human After All, an album that (according to some online sources) was recorded in only six weeks between September and November of 2004. After listening to the album, it really sounds like it was recorded in only six weeks. This album is the antithesis of Discovery. The production on this album is sparse (at least compared to Discovery). Only computerized vocals are to be found and there are no guest stars. There are only nine songs, ten if you include a very short interlude. The majority of the songs run less than five minutes long. The songs in this collection are very repetitive and have little variation within them. Somehow, however, the album doesn't end up being a piece of crap.

Basically, this album is fluff. There is zero depth. But, the songs are fun. The title song is perfect dance mix fodder. "The Prime Time Of Your Life" surprises by taking an interesting turn midway through. "Make Love" comes the closest to sounding like anything from Discovery. The biggest problem of this album is the lack of a standout song. This album has no song like "Around The World" or "One More Time," a song that instantly hooks you in and doesn't let go. These songs tend to almost fade into one another.

It's ironic that an album named Human After All sounds so inhuman. Ultimately, I wonder if this album can really be called a follow-up to Discovery. Maybe the duo was tired out after recording Discovery and then working on Interstella 5555. They probably wanted to make an album that was simple and fun. I bet some of these songs were finished within a day. They succeeded in making a fluffy album. It's short and it doesn't overstay its welcome. This respite of an album didn't turn out bad, but I really hope they take their time on their next release. I don't want it to be a Discovery clone. I just want it to be a little more...substantial.

No comments:

Post a Comment