First Listen: Daft Punk's 'Tron' Soundtrack

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Daft Punk
WRITTEN BY
Steve Appleford

When news first leaked that Daft Punk were writing the soundtrack for Disney's Tron: Legacy, fans were so excited that they posted fake tracks online. But on Saturday in Santa Monica, California, Disney unveiled the real thing with an exclusive preview of 5 of the 22 tracks. The score is a departure for the dance punk duo - Daft Punk's ditch their Parisian discothèque sound in favor of stunning, baroque-flavored instrumentals.

Director Joseph Kosinki, who was on-hand at the event, revealed the origins of Daft Punk's score. After he personally persuaded Guy-Manual de Homem-Christo and Thomas Bangalter to contribute, the duo holed up in London's AIR Lyndhurst Studios with an 85-piece orchestra to write and record the score."It was clear to me that these were not just dance guys," Kosinski said of first meeting the duo. "It shared a level of musicianship and songwriting that was clearly at another level."

There are no plans for Daft Punk to perform the soundtrack live, but Kosinski, who just finished cutting the 3-D version of the movie, did manage to persuade the duo to make a cameo in the film's nightclub scene. "I didn't want to force them, but the guys dress as robots anyway. It was not a huge leap for them."

Kosinski previewed five tracks from the soundtrack, which comes out on December 7 and will be available for preview next week at KCRW. Check out SPIN's breakdown of the tracks below.

"Recognize or Capture"
This ominous track booms with frantic slices of strings and heavy blasts of electronics and brass. "This is when the 3-D kicks in and the music takes an important role," said Bentley. "You can feel how Daft Punk had command of the orchestra."

"Solar Sailer"
Combining strings and a brooding electronic pulse, "Solar Sailer" piece swells with a quiet drama, as a keyboard melody flutters softly over the beats.

"Adagio"
Kosinski described this song as a "formidable piece of orchestral music" - and he's right. This classical-style number was the most emotionally wrenching, with layers of strings, computer blips and an aching violin solo that wouldn't have been out of place in any number of Oscar-winning dramas. "Adagio" is used in a key scene, when Jeff Bridges' character explains the reasons for his disappearance.

"Disc Wars"
Set to a thunderous military beat, this track fuels a storm of orchestral sounds and cascading electronic melodies, which soar with drama and grace.

"Legacy (End Title)"
This closing track is the most allied with Daft Punk's future-funk vibe. This snaky, growling groove offers joyous, emotional uplift and is best-suited for the dance floor, with cascading synth lines, heavy beats and other breezy, electro atmospherics.

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