Random Access Memories is the fourth studio album by French electronic music duo Daft Punk, released on 17 May 2013 by the duo's imprint Daft Life and Columbia Records. The album pays tribute to the late 1970s and early 1980s American music, particularly from Los Angeles. Unlike their previous albums, Daft Punk recruited session musicians to perform live instrumentation and limited the use of electronic instruments to drum machines, a custom-built modular synthesizer, and vintage vocoders. The album features collaborations with Giorgio Moroder, Panda Bear, Julian Casablancas, Todd Edwards, DJ Falcon, Chilly Gonzales, Nile Rodgers, Paul Williams and Pharrell Williams. It is the first Daft Punk album released by Columbia Records. The Japan-exclusive bonus track "Horizon", written by Bangalter and de Homem Christo, is a slow-tempo composition reminiscent of Pink Floyd. It is characterized by a consistent guitar strum while several additional instruments are progressively layered over, including a bass guitar and drums. The song is stylistically different from other tracks on the album, and is one of the few to feature no lyrics.
The place for Art of Noise neophytes to start, Daft collects (Who's Afraid Of?) The Art of Noise! and Into Battle with the Art of Noise, along with two reworkings of "Moments in Love" from the original U.K. release of that song, to make a fantastic hour's worth of music. If anything, a single or two aside, Daft beats out the official Best Of compilation by a mile. Having aged superbly with time, AON's early works sound all the more advanced and of the moment, a testament especially to Trevor Horn's excellent production and Anne Dudley's gripping arrangements. Further entertainment comes from the liner notes, which aren't merely state-of-the-art 1984 album design but an apparently barbed attack on the further incarnation of the band from one Otto Flake. The exact seriousness of this is up to the reader. As for the "Moments in Love" versions, both are gentler and more elegant than the already lush original, and none the worse for that, though "(Three Fingers Of) Love" does have rather disconcerting sound effects added to it.