#3 – Daft Punk – Random Access Memories
Looking to albums like Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours and Pink Floyd’s The Dark Side of the Moon, Daft Punk wanted to create an album that takes you on “a journey for miles and miles” with Random Access Memories and they succeeded. However, it isn’t the journey you’d typically expect from the duo. With their first album, Daft Punk, by way of drum machines, synthesizers and vocoders, reinterpreted the music that inspired them to make music in the first place. Appropriately, they created a definitive sound for themselves – the ‘sound of the future.’
Now, using mostly live instruments, Daft Punk works hard to undo what they helped set in motion with their early work. This effort is epitomized by “Within”, which features a piano, bass guitar and drums as well as vocoded vocals lamenting about not understanding ‘so many things.’ Instead of hiding emotion behind a vocoder, Daft Punk strives to use a vocoder to emote.
The same can be said of the use of instruments and arrangements throughout RAM. At times it can seem as capricious as a musical (“Touch”), at other times it’s as simple as a straightforward rock song (“Instant Crush”), but it is almost always more human than any album Daft Punk has released before. Daft Punk may have changed the game again. -Rondeau
Other accolades: #1 on Amazon, #2 on MOJO, #3 on Rolling Stone, #6 on NME, #9 on Stereogum, #15 on Paste, #19 on Spin, #38 on Consequence of Sound