Many times in my life, I’ve been asked, or have indirectly heard, the question “What’s good music that really pumps you up? For when I want to work out or get going for the day?” Heard that question asked several times in several different ways. My usual answers? Pantera, Sevendust, Metallica, to a lesser degree 3 Doors Down and Paul Oakenfeld – and let’s not forget Tchaikovsky.
The suggestions in the answers to that question have a similar tone to me; intense, passionate, fierce, without needing to be angry or enraged, or any other similar negative feeling. Sure, a lot of pump-up music involves anger, but it’s not needed to get your blood going, at all.
Daft Punk proves this remarkably well in their soundtrack to the new movie Tron Legacy. What I like most about this soundtrack more than most is that the artist takes a creative turn while keeping the core of what they do intact. I’m used to Daft Punk as bizarre, mostly lighthearted, with beats that usually entice a house party or rave. They’re consistently fresh in their melodies, and they continue that powerful trek here.
The album is very dark, very intense, and very emotional. “Nocturne” is a brief song that sounds like a funeral scene, and tunes like “Overture”, “Armory” and “Recognizer” set the tone for the album as a whole; intensely passionate and gruesome, but with brilliant harmony. Daft Punk seems to take themselves more seriously than ever before, and you can hear it. And it’s brilliant.
The most traditional-sounding Daft Punk tracks are certainly “End of Line” and “Derezzed.” It has an old school sounding tempo, with sound bytes that you could swear were taken out of the video game Galaga, and brings you back to the time of the original Tron in that sense.
The execs for Tron either gave Daft Punk generally free creative reign, or they told them to write a strong set of songs that balance the Daft Punk we know with the Daft Punk that they want to create going forward. If you like tough, competitive-sounding symphonic instrumentals with a touch of that funky Daft Punk touch, then the soundtrack to Tron Legacy is right up your alley. It’s as inspiring as it is moody.
Good to have you back, boys.