Get reconfigured with ‘Tron’

Tron Legacy

When it was first announced that "Tron: Legacy," a sequel to the 1982 cult sci-fi film, "Tron," was in development, many were skeptical. Some thought that the film was far too old to warrant a 2010 sequel. Others cited the film’s glacier-slow pace to be a good enough reason not to make another film.

The arguing stopped, however, once it was announced that French electronica duo Daft Punk would be producing the film’s score, and would be making a cameo appearance in the film as MP3 "masked DJ programs." When the soundtrack was released on December 7, 2010, it quickly became a best-seller, and, while the film was entertaining and well-written, many believed the soundtrack to be even better than the film itself. There was still one minor complaint: the soundtrack was a major departure from Daft Punk’s previous work. In response, "Tron: Legacy Reconfigured," a remix album of the original film score, was produced. While some of the remixes are not as good as the original tracks, the album as a whole does an excellent job of taking the orchestral- and minimalist- electronica film score and transforming it into a more familiar-sounding product.

The album incites two remixes of what was arguably the most energetic of Daft Punk’s score, "Derezzed," the first of which was remixed by The Glitch Mob. This turns the original upbeat track into a downtempo mix, and does so rather well. Also notable is the Crystal Method remix of the film’s main theme, "The Grid," which is one of the better examples of the original orchestral elements of the track being properly transferred to an electronic piece; the M83 vs. Big Black Delta mix of a short, almost entirely orchestra-driven track, "Fall;" both the Ki Theory and Moby remixes of "The Son of Flynn," which evoke similarities to previous Daft Punk tracks, such as "Robot Rock," "Human After All" and "Cresendolls;" both remixes of the downtempo track "End of Line," by Boys Noize and Photek, respectively, which provide interesting takes on the same track; and the Sander Kleinenberg remix of the "Tron Legacy (End Titles)" track.

The album is not without its weak points; namely, the Avicii remix of "Derezzed," the Paul Oakenfold version of "C.L.U.," the Teddybears mix of "Adagio for Tron," the "Rinzler" remix by Kaskade and the "Encom Part 2" remix by Com Truize. These tracks all suffer from poor sound engineering, and sound uninspired at best and absolutely annoying at worst. The Avicii "Derezzed" track is particularly bad, as it has next to no similarities with the original piece and is generally poor-sounding in its own right.

It is worth noting that the very concept of this remix album seems to have been less of an artistic choice by the artists themselves and more of a corporate decision. The album as a whole almost seems to be pandering to hardcore Daft Punk fans at times, as some tracks seem to have been forced into remixes.

That said, because the album is similar to Daft Punk’s other work, it makes the soundtrack accessible to those people who refused to buy the original, due to its departure from the typical Daft Punk sound. Also, since many of the tracks themselves are extremely well-constructed, the album as a whole is definitely worth the $9.99 price tag. Fans of French house, trance and downtempo electronic music should definitely check out Daft Punk’s newly-"Reconfigured" sound.