Thursday, April 7, 2011

Daft Punk - 'TRON: Legacy R3C0NF1GUR3D' soundtrack

Released last year, Daft Punk’s soundtrack for TRON: Legacy was a much better composition than such an iffy sci-fi film deserved. It blended orchestral and electronic music together while honoring and expanding the ideas of the score for the original film by Wendy Carlos (and Journey, sort of). With TRON: Legacy dropping on DVD (and Blu-ray, if you’re into that sort of thing), it makes sense that Walt Disney Records would cash in on the soundtrack one more time with TRON: Legacy R3C0NF1GUR3D [NOTE: Much like with Nine Inch Nails’ Y34RZ3R0R3M1X3D, I’m just gonna go ahead and spell this phonetically as “Reconfigured.,” because fuck L337 speak.]

At 78 minutes, “Reconfigured” is a beast, stretching out a lot of Legacy’s best moments and adding dancier beats. Sometimes it works – both The Glitch Mob and Avicii do great jobs with “Derezzed” – and sometimes it doesn’t. The record is a big grab bag of techno from a surprising mix of names. I’m excited to see my beloved M83 show up on “Fall;” perplexed by the presence of The Crystal Method and Moby. Paul Oakenfold shows up on “C.L.U.” and turns it into an obnoxiously fun dance track with some weird metal moments. Boys Noize has arguably the best remix, for "End of Line," enhancing that song's club-like qualities while adding more bloops 'n' bleeps.

“Reconfigured” is a niche within a niche. In order to like the original score, you needed to like Daft Punk and TRON in equal measures, which some people struggled with. In order to like “Reconfigured,” you need to do all of that plus care about remixes. Quoth Diesel Sweeties: “Remixing a song is like admitting you were wrong.” This do-over is nifty in spots and spotty in others. The original pieces were pretty short, and these stretched out versions don’t quite compare. Still, if you fit into that niche within a niche, “Reconfigured” is a pleasant, though uneven, purchase.

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