This week marks the 15th anniversary of one of simply the most monumental dance music albums ever. Daft Punk’s Discovery, which hit American shores on March 13, 2001 (dropping a few weeks earlier in Europe), was the critical peak of the most important electronic act of the 21st century.
The album’s mix of French House, R&B, and disco makes it absolute required listening for anyone who cares to know about dance music, and the expert sequencing makes it a stone-cold classic front-to-back that is meant to be listened to as a whole. Still, for those of you who have not time listen to albums anymore, some tracks are more classic (classic-er) than others. So, in honor of Discovery crossing this milestone, we decided to rank all 14 of its tracks from (relatively) worst to best.
Let’s get to it.
This song is meant as a cool-down, sandwiched as it is between the massive chant-alongs of “Crescendolls” and “Superheroes.” Unfortunately, the track doesn’t do much to distinguish itself, its mellow piano chords drifting aimlessly for a minute and a half. This more mellow cut would be perfect for a “Continue?” screen on a 16-bit video game console, but in the context of the non-stop bangers on Discovery, it’s hard to measure up.
13. Short Circuit
“Short Circuit” brings up the back of the pack through no fault of its own. In a vacuum, it’s a wonderful mix of skronky robot bass and breakbeats. As a Prince mega-fan, I have to admit the decaying sounds at the end of the track that are Daft Punk’s take on “The Ballad of Dorothy Parker” are strangely beautiful. But artists as sample-dependent as Daft Punk should know that their albums aren’t released in a vacuum and this b-boy sound has been done better by many other artists.
A track that’s largely forgettable because the artists who made it had already done it one better. “Around the World” came out half a decade before this track and still annihilates it in a head-to-head competition. It contains an interpolation of Oliver Cheatham’s 1983 cut “Get Down Saturday Night” which is infinitely more fun in its original form.
11. Too Long
A bugged out, Moby-ian odyssey that closes the album with some rare, unfiltered vocals. While it’s a great track, it suffers from the problems hinted to in its own title. I’d gladly sacrifice seven of the tracks ten minutes for longer stays in “Aerodynamic” or “High Life.”