One of the most popular electronic bands ever (along with Kraftwerk, Yellow Magic Orchestra and a few others). Formed in 1993 by Frenchmen Thomas Bangalter and Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo, they basically invented French House music (well, they haven't invented it, but at least they established a lot of its elements and exposed them to a wider audience) and have done much to make electronic music mainstream.They have released three albums so far (as well as a number of remixes, a film score or two, two different movies, and a bunch of other side projects). The first two, Homework and Discovery, are pretty much universally loved, while Human After Allisnot. There's also two live albums full of mashing and mixing of their songs too, entitled Alive 1997 and Alive 2007.They've released a number of extremely popular singles, such as "Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger", "Around the World", "Technologic", "Revolution 909" and "One More Time". They've been sampled numerous times, most noticeably "Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger" by Kanye West for his song "Stronger".The duo are also the embodiment of The Faceless, having spent the bulk of their careers shrouded in secrecy and, save for several publicity photos taken early on in their careers before signing to a major label, never being photographed without some form of mask over their faces. Their most famous mask of course, being their robot masks which have come to be known as their de facto "faces" to the general public.They also pull off one of the best live shows in existence by mashing and mixing together their songs... while playing in an LCD screen pyramid in front of a glowing honeycomb. And dressed as robots. (No, really, see foryourself.)They collaborated with the legendary Leiji Matsumoto to create an animated film out of their album Discovery called Interstella 5555: The 5tory of the 5ecret 5tar 5ystem. They also created a surealistic art-house film called Electroma, which basically tells the origin of their robotic alter egos.Their last project was the score for TRON: Legacy. They do appear in the movie as the personified versions of media player programs.They also contributed eleven mixes for the Guitar HeroSpin-Off, DJ Hero, as well as being playable characters in the game. Two of these mixes are "Another One Bites Da Funk" and "We Will Robot Rock You".In January 2013, it was revealed that Daft Punk had signed to Sony Music Entertainment (through Columbia Records) and that a new album, Random Access Memories, would be released in May 2013. Its first single, "Get Lucky", features singer/producer Pharrell Williams and Chic guitarist Nile Rodgers. It's also now their biggest hit in their entire career, reaching number one in the UK and number 10 in the US (their first Top 40 hit in the country ever). Random Access Memories itself was praised to high heaven by critics for being original and innovative as well as appealing highly to casual listeners. It was met with a similar reaction to that of Human After All by some fans, however.
Epic Instrumental Opener: Inverted on Alive 2007. It starts with two voices chanting "ROBOT" and "HUMAN" back and forth at each other, getting faster and faster, before segueing into the largely-instrumental "Robot Rock".
Epic Rocking: "Too Long", clocking in at exactly ten minutes.
"Giorgio by Moroder" and "Touch" from Random Access Memories are over 8 minutes long and go through several musical styles.
The Faceless: The duo are famous for their refusal to allow ANYONE to see their true faces, to the point that the two did interviews promoting Electroma with hoods over their heads.
During the pre-production of TRON: Legacy, they actually met the Director at a Los Angeles pancake house... while wearing their robot suits!
This, however, is only true since they got the robot helmets made. They were just two French Guys (tm) during their first tour. They've been described as "incredibly shy", which might have something to do with the helmets.
Fun Personified: As can be seen in the quote above, they take the enjoyment of their fans VERY seriously. Their iconic robot look is a way for fans to immerse themselves into the music and its themes.
Genre Throwback: While Daft Punk have always toyed with this idea, Random Access Memories was the first time that they actually sounded like their heroes from The Seventies. The album features Nile Rodgers of disco band Chic and Giorgio Moroder (disco producer most known for creating Donna Summer's best works.) The session musicians used for the album were given music by Electric Light Orchestra, Music/Supertramp and Michael Mc Donald as reference points, and it shows.
Heterosexual Life Partners: The duo has known each other since grade school and are seemingly the closest of friends after all these years. There is a big d'awww factor in that as well.
There's a reason the first album was called Homework. Further, one of the songs on Human After All is called "Robot Rock" — Kraftwerk's preferred term for techno.
"Teachers" is this. It's a List Song of Daft Punk's influences as musicians.
Both Discovery and Random Access Memories can be seen as a Homage to the music of the late 70s and early 80s, but the two albums take very different approaches. Discovery makes extensive use of samples of disco and post-disco songs, while Random Access Memories uses a live band and vintage electronics to recreate the original sound.
Mind Screw: The music video to "Around the World"...until you realise that each individual group of dancers represents each instrumental part. The large men in tracksuits represent the bass, the skeletons represent the guitar, the mummies represent the drum machine, the "disco girls" represent the keyboard, and the robots represent the vocal track.
Motorcycle Jousting: This is the theme of the music video for "Derezzed"; a fictional videogame of this nature.
Reclusive Artist: Appearance-wise, at least. Although photos of their faces very early on in their career do indeed exist, most of the time, they always cover up their faces with something, usually their iconic robot helmets. The band have also gone on record saying that they use the robot image to keep their Daft Punk and personal lives separated.
Rock Opera: Discovery, sorta. It's the soundtrack for Interstella 5555, which is told entirely through that album. It makes no sense as an opera without the movie, though.
Sampling: As is par for the course, given their genre. Notable examples include Breakwater on "Robot Rock", Billy Joel on "High Fidelity" and "Fresh", Barry Manilow on "Superheroes", and lots of other 70s disco, funk, R&B, and soul artists. The most high-profile case of Daft Punk themselves being sampled is probably Kanye West's "Stronger". "Robot Rock" is also a very popular track for up-and-coming rap talent to freestyle over, as well.
This video shows most if not all of the songs that were sampled in the making of Discovery.
Random Access Memories notably contains only one sample during "Contact".
Self-Deprecation: Daft Punk appear as themselves in a cameo in Intestella 5555 at a music awards ceremony, where they lose to the main characters. In case you don't get the significance of that, in a 65 minute video (opening and credits included), they have a five-second cameo, and then they lose to a fake band playing their music.
Discovery closes with a 10 minute long track named Too Long.