Find Me On:
it might’ve been a good idea for stp to have pulled the plug ten years ago and at least let the band try to forge some sort of legacy. i’m no fan of bennington or linkin park, but taking into consideration how uneven stp’s recent past has been, even this gig is a bit beneath him.
okay, even if you’re not saying they’re THE most influential electronic act in the new millenium, i’d still have to disagree with you to the degree of their influence. i wouldn’t say i’m especially well-versed with the catalogues of the radio suspects you mention, but aside from vocoders and pitch-shifting, apparently i don’t hear what you’re hearing. i do hear a bit of a house influence, and i do think that daft punk, for me at least, is probably the group that defines house music but not necessarily its creator. but i don’t think the music you describe is influenced by the house music daft punk makes.
it’s a bit of quibbling i’m not entirely interested in continuing, mostly because it’s a little like arguing about nothing, but i just can’t help but feel like people hold daft punk’s legacy in everything edm. to me, they’re a couple of guys with really cool robot costumes, two great albums and a handful of classic songs that did influence, but not necessarily to the degree that people think they did. and i also don’t think they’re as great as people say, obviously.
i’m not disputing that their influence isn’t there. but i hardly think that it’s reflected in the bullshit that’s on pop radio right now. homework was definitely influential with european dance music, and that never really made a huge splash here until as of the past few years. and discovery, whose importance i don’t want to deflate or dismiss, might’ve kept that going if only for a couple more years, but that runs up against popular dance music’s absence from most of the ’00s. and that’s really when daft punk was supposedly “influential” enough to lay the groundwork for modern edm. my argument is if it was ever there, it barely was. and that’s not to say dozens of other bands didn’t help make that push. i am not definitely saying you are wrong, but it’s kind of a tall order to say they’re THE group that defines dance music now.
and i know i can’t predict the future and say that this album will undeniably go down in history as a huge disappointment, but in the scope of daft punk’s career, it probably won’t help their legacy, especially the one people have built up in the past 5 years or so. you’re 100% correct in that assessment of discovery, but to think people will make a turnabout twice on one artist in a single decade? i really don’t think that’s happened for any artist of the modern era. i don’t even particularly think this hurts daft punk’s legacy, but sometimes i think people need to realize it’s okay for an artist to have a misstep or two in their careers.
buddy, i don’t care if you like ram or if you don’t. and i’m not disturbed by the idea that other people here like it. a few have brought up a couple reasons that could actually make the case for me to give it another try. but i stand by my reasons, and i’m pretty firm in the idea that history will prove me right. this album is kind of a flop.
i already mentioned that my reasoning wasn’t directed at people like yourself. if you want to continue using the reason “oh, well this my introduction to daft punk, so as an unwitting music fan who is largely unfamiliar with their material, me liking this album means it’s good,” then by all means, i can respect that argument. but not to mention the fact it’s largely untrue by your own admission. in fact, having “jammed” to them, that’s not exactly not listening to them “not much at all.” so, yeah, credibility.
there’s a majority here? i can’t think of any album discussed on stereogum in recent memory as heavily debated as this one with such a split opinion.
i realize there’s a lot of room for argument with what i said, but i feel i need to preface this comment with a little more context, at least before more people start replying with “you’re dead wrong dude, never heard or liked daft punk before, love this album”-type diatribes:
i’m not calling you guys outright liars, but i have a pretty difficult time believing that none of you have ever liked or appreciated discovery before you even heard this album this week. i have an even more difficult time believing that you’ve never even heard discovery. and truly, the hardest argument, to me, would for me to believe you never liked/heard “around the world” or “da funk” before you heard the new album.
but what truly drives me nuts is that anyone could listen to random access memories, read every negative comment about it posted by a stereogum user this week, take those things into account without ever having listened to or appreciated any previous daft punk material, and still be like, “dude, great album, haters keep hatin.” sorry guys. i mean really.
ok, so i’m automatically wrong because one person becomes the exception? that comment wasn’t even necessarily directed at someone like yourself.
i know this goes contrary to everything the blogosphere rants and raves about, but i can’t help but think everyone has been so blinded by the legend of daft punk they’re willing to throw whatever accolades they can at this. homework is a great album that still holds up, and discovery makes a case for album of the millennium, but honestly, who in their right mind, after human after all and the tron legacy soundtrack, had their hopes up for 12 long years thinking we were going to get a record that would trump those efforts? and since their material for the past decade has had diminishing returns, why are people still standing on the front lines ready to defend them?
they may be able to define a specific genre of electronic music (“house”), the robot-costume image that’s worked so well for them, and some pretty indelible and memorable dance singles, but it’s always been difficult for me to understand the infatuation people have had with them, almost to the point of sanctity, especially when there are other much more fruitful returns to be gained from other 90s groups like the chemical brothers. over the past decade, i personally have never understood why the indie press has refused to carry a torch for the chemical brothers instead of daft punk. their live show is just as amazing, they have a wealth of great material to draw from, their track record for quality albums is much more consistent. even their best album, dig your own hole, does in fact hold a torch to discovery. and the case could be argued that the chemical brothers have done more for the current state of edm than daft punk. i guess i could see how some could regard the chemical brothers’ breakbeats as repetitive and the lower-end bass a little obnoxious, but i can’t think of many other electronic groups that bridge that gap between party-ready anthems and electro-psychedelica so seamlessly. we’ve only occasionally gotten that from daft punk. i can definitely return to discovery now and again, but i can just as easily go back to dig your own hole, or surrender, or even further, and i can get what i’m looking for.
with random access memories, everyone keeps saying “listen to it again, let it absorb maaaaan,” but i can’t help but think my reticence to automatically dub this amazing on every level has less to do with cynicism than it does the fact that there isn’t much there to hold on to. great, they took a chance, the production is fantastic, but that’s about it. a few spots are interesting, but if i can’t latch onto this by the second listen, unless someone sits me down and orders me to hear it for a third and fourth time, why would i bother with returning to it again?
hard to disagree with this one. but even though it’s a little generic even by murphy’s own admission, i feel like tribulations should’ve made it.
the six albums of the national vs. six seasons of mad men connection is one i hadn’t thought of before, and that really hit me in the face: there’s some interesting parallels there.
but this idea that bands like the national require, or are at least accentuated, by a certain season, time of day, etc. is one i don’t subscribe to, particularly with that band. i only discovered them with boxer in 2007, unpacking boxes in a new apartment that summer when “apartment story” came on (no literal connection there) in broad afternoon daylight. same goes for high violet. i had written that album off in 2010 as a more difficult version of boxer with inferior songs, and put it on in the summer of 2011 for a daytrip to cooperstown. after the first four songs i remember banging my head repeatedly against the steering wheel for having dismissed it. maybe these albums would have registered more fully at night, but without a doubt that wasn’t essential for me.
and now, with trouble will find me, i can’t imagine trying to listen to them any other way: nighttime, wine, fall or winter, i can see why people think these factors are somehow mandatory, but even if it helps, i really don’t think any of it actually matters. the national, to me, is a band that has never let me down, and trouble will find me suffers from none of those aforementioned needs.
a few days back, sgtpepper93 wrote, “I think it’s a solid album, it just came out in the wrong season. National is winter/fall music for me.” awesome, dude. i’ve been rocking that shit in the spring, daytime with the windows open. too bad you can’t get past it, because goddamn if it’s not good enough to enjoy right now.
if their past history can be referenced, pitchfork has been backed into a corner before, and they’ve clawed themselves out
not that it matters, but they’d be crazy to give this album bnm
nice job being a dick for no reason
i’d like to state for the record that even though everyone else has been hating on the chipmunk voices on “ya hey,” they are not out of place, they are not distracting, and i simply can’t think of the song without them.
what a damn fine album. and if you have the gall to say this record “wasn’t really made to be played live,” then you’re moving the goal posts in the wrong direction. every live video i’ve seen of the new songs has been fantastic.
with all due respect, no, you are wrong. although saying people are judging by what it is would be accurate, “what it is” is actually not much. even “get lucky” had a shelf-life of what, maybe a week? i initially dug that song quite a bit by its simplicity and grooviness, but aside from that, there wasn’t much to sink into, especially for a lead single. not good for a 74 minute record.
you’re also missing my broader point which is after waiting for over a decade for a record that could possibly measure up to homework or discovery, this is what we’re left with. and unfortunately, it’s not much. maybe you should take your own advice and give it some time to let the disappointment truly sink in.
i feel like the positive comments here are being way too kind, and the more level-headed negative ones actually happen to be pretty accurate. this record is pretty self-indulgent and disappointing, not for the smattering of decent songs that are here but for the fact that we’ve been waiting for such a long time for a daft punk record. i know a lot of you want to be optimistic and kind (reading some of the overly flattering comments while i listened to this made me lol), but let’s be honest, we didn’t ask for a disco-lite album bordering on elevator music. we can all appreciate a late-game curveball, but in the context of baseball, it has to sail over home plate to actually count, to have the announcers make a note of the risk involved, to have the fans rave about it after the game. i feel like everyone who claims to like this outside-pitch curveball likes it because, well, it was curv-y nonetheless.
isn’t having matt berninger reduce all of you heterosexual guys to a whimpering puddle yet again enough? he can only do this once every 3 years, dudes.
i can definitely live in a world where contra is considered their worst album
even though this record is jarringly diverse, almost uncomfortably so, i’ve got to give them credit for sounding fresh. it seems like only yesterday people were ridiculing them for their sound, and now it seems like the haters using paul simon comparisons can finally shut the fuck up. first contra, now this – it really vindicates the effort i put into defending these guys over the past five years.
but does anyone else think, after the third or fourth listen, that “unbelievers” is getting truly annoying? not sure at this point if they’re gonna get much mileage out of that one.
yeah it would be just so tragic if they actually played damaged songs. you know, the band’s certified classic.
and to top it off, because i’m an asshole who can’t shut up, my own ranking:
2. it still moves
3. evil urges
4. at dawn
5. the tennessee fire
awesome, aside from this being genuinely great news, now everyone here can continue misspelling “jeff mangum” at will
not really, i like both. i’m not even saying because of evil urges, mmj is getting better – i think their recorded material, while still good, is getting kind of getting worse. what i’m saying is that at dawn isn’t really as awesome as everyone claims. i should note that i don’t think that evil urges is as awesome as some people claim either. but i think a lot of people who make that argument are trying to latch onto the “early material is better” argument, and i’m not saying you’re doing that. people need to go back and listen to at dawn just to see how airy and listless a good portion of that record is rather than cling to the “band’s perennial second record” argument. my point is that at least evil urges is rooted, despite its obvious flaws. in my opinion it’s one case where gloss and unevenness trumps a record that’s good but obviously much of it is filler edging on experimental – it’s twenty minutes longer than evil urges, and for what?
i really don’t think at dawn is the crux of mmj’s career act i. it still moves is still the best of that era.
i never called it unlistenable
although i mentioned that song, that’s not really the focus of my argument. i LIKE that terrible soft rock detour.
half those songs are “worth repeating”