It has been over two and a half years since the world watched with awe as Kanye West and Daft Punk performed together at the 50th Grammy Awards, so why revisit the moment now? Sure, its always fun to talk about these artists, but quite a lot has been happening for them both since this show. Having recently performed at the MTV Video Music Awards and on Saturday Night Live, Kanye West is set to unleash his fifth studio album, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, on November 22nd. Daft Punks Tron: Legacy score is set to hit stores two weeks later on December 7th. Essentially, this video conveniently summarizes how high the stakes are for both Daft Punk and Kanye West.
Expectations are astronomical for Daft Punk, thanks to their legendary Coachella performance and subsequent tour. The 2006-07 tour is impressive thanks to both a gigantic Freemason pyramid of light and the duos creative and completely irresistible mix of material from all their albums. Their upcoming album is a film score, so how is that going to work into the tour that is rumored to happen next summer? Will anything less than the dance party of the year and an unimaginable spectacle of epic proportions disappoint?
For Daft Punk, maintaining their acclaim and adoration is the impending test, but for Kanye West, regaining lost good will is the challenge. Instances such as the Bonnaroo fiasco and caps-locked Myspace rants have turned West into a figure that people just love to hate. It takes a lot of animosity for a co-headlining tour with Lady Gaga to get promptly canceled, but interrupting Taylor Swifts moment of glory seemed to do the trick.
The 2008 Grammy performance gave a sneak peak at what became Kanye Wests highly successful Glow in the Dark tour. The ultraviolet flames and wardrobe, including those infamous shades, may be relatively simple but are nonetheless effective. The Daft Punk-sampling Stronger is one of Wests best singles, and it’s clear from the confidence in his performance that he knows this. It’s the sound and sight of an artist at the top of his game.
West is often backed by a string section, but for this performance of Stronger, it’s none other than Daft Punk sharing the stage for the first — and currently only- time. When the pyramid becomes illuminated with a red glow and opens to reveal the house duo in similar attire, it is a visual delight. As impressive as the touchscreens and Tron-esque pyramid and suits look, it is a scaled-down version of what was a phenomenon at festivals and arenas around the world.
Is Kanye West merely an obnoxious, shutter-shaded egomaniac, as his haters claim, or the genius that he supposedly considers himself to be? Both? Neither? Honestly, why do we care so much? He knows how to put on an impressive live show and has some undeniable gems in his discography, and isnt that what really matters?