Thomas Bangalter and Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo journey into their place in the electronic music genre didn’t start well. Their early years into the music scene was marked by a single failed attempt to be relevant in the Parisian rock scene – a dying art during the years 1987-1992.
Their cover of the Beach Boys’ “Darlin'” didn’t come out with the bang they were expecting. A negative review in Britain’s Melody Maker doomed their rock aspirations after their single was derided as “daft punk” – that which soon became their recording name.
During a 1993 rave party at EuroDisney, the duo gave the heads of techno label “Soma” a demo that included a rough cut of New Wave. This was Daft Punk’s first foray into electronic dance music and it was also the end of rock as their musical forte.
1995 marked the duo’s first commercially successful single Da Funk. This then led to their search for representation, which Pedro Winter took for them. Daft Punk signed with Virgin Records in September 1996.
The start of their popularity was during the launch of their debut album “Homework”, which included Da Funk and the final mix of New Wave: Alive. This album became the start of a new wave of EDM and defined Daft Punk’s position for the years to come.
Their robot identity they carried until today started during their recording of Discovery in 2000. The helmets were first worn after an accident involving their recording equipment.
This also marked their launch of their second album “Discovery” in 2001. This was a departure from the style used in the previous album with the attempt to depict the curiosity of childhood as its core idea.
Their third album, Human After All,was released in 2005, followed by the compilation Musique, Vol. 1: 1993-2005 a year later. There mixed reactions received when the album was released, but they wqere able to put a new game on the years after.
2007 marked their second live record: Alive 2007. The Album and its single Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger won Grammy Awards in 2009. They also announced their composition of 24 tracks for the film Tron: Legacy.
The fourth studio album, Random Access Memories, was released in 2013. This album was gradually promoted during the years before, until its full release. Its lead single Get Lucky became Daft Punk’s first UK #1 single in April and stay on the spot for four weeks.
At present, Daft Punk has been collaborating with other performers on several projects. Their most recent collaborations were with the Canadian R&B singer The Weeknd for the track Starboy. In 2017, Daft Punk has co-written Overnight with the Australian band Parcels.
Daft Punk’s music is inspired by several elements. The group’s sound is a dancefloor-oriented mix of rock, house, funk, electro and techno. This is accented by hip-hop-styled beats and crowd-firing samples. Several artists also influenced the duo based on the albums that were released, such as Andy Warhol during their earlier works.
The duo was inspired by Wendy Carlos during the creation of the Tron: Legacy album. Other influences included Max Steiner, Bernard Herrmann, John Carpenter, Vangelis, Philip Glass and Maurice Jarre. Daft Punk went for a “West Coast Vibe” during the production of Random Access Memories – referencing performers such as Fleetwood Mac, The Doobie Brothers and the Eagles.