Words by Brinsley Chidavaenzi
Daft Punk were a duo together longer than I’ve been alive. They passed through my childhood; adolescence and mature years without a crack in their charm and spirit, as well as weathered and reinvented themselves throughout the near 3-decade career they exhibited.
They are a synthesis and evolution of their influences; ultimately as all great musicians start with being influenced – they became an influencer on a generation. Their ideas and musical DNA are embedded into 21st century pop and electronic music. Funk and disco sensibilities and samples in the EDM era with Random Access Memories having a mainstream resurgence? That’s Daft Punk. The popularisation of French house mixed with pop sensibilities engaging a larger crossover audience? That’s Daft Punk.
They explored the sounds before they came “saturated”, “pastiche” and any other non enthusiastic words you can think of, became associated with that sound. Purely exploring ideas with a magnifying glass as true artists do without a flinch or concern for popular trends. Their embrace of technology, concepts and strict thematic cohesion allowed them to unveil every stage of a career with a script like quality that kept us all in suspense and eager for next moves.
Foregoing their human image as Thomas and Guy-Manuel and into the iconic Daft Punk helmets allowed themselves to be etched in the canon of iconography, which is a rare feat in a time obsessed with; exposure, revealing and bareness. Which teaches us Preservation is another lesson we can all learn from Daft Punk; a preservation in integrity, artistic ideas and creativity.
As the teachers thought Daft Punk, hopefully we can learn from them as they’ve taught us.