With a mostly quiet YouTube video and an explosion, the iconic French electronic music duo that is Daft Punkon Monday. The music group that brought us the Tron soundtrack and kept us up all night to Get Lucky is no more. But they’ve left an indelible impact on society that will live on for generations.
Yes, Daft Punk’s music is a legacy unto itself, but it’s almost impossible to think about the band without thinking about their gold and silver helmets — bizarre, charming headgear that’s every bit as influential as the band’s sound.
Let’s say goodbye to Daft Punk’s weird helmets by celebrating other faceless, helmeted artists.
Legend has it Joel Thomas Zimmerman earned his stage name after telling an internet chatroom he found a deceased rodent in his computer case. Soon, he was known as the “dead mouse guy,” which eventually morphed to DeadMau5. He’s nowfor wearing an amazing, oversized mouse helmet and for carving his own genre out of progressive house music.
is a little more friendly looking than Daft Punk’s robotic headgear: a big white bucket with a wide, friendly smile. For his first few years on the scene, Marshmello actually did a pretty great job of hiding his identity and even faked out fans with a false reveal. The secret didn’t last forever, though: A Forbes interview eventually outed the masked musician as Christopher Comstock, also known as Dotcom.
Daniel Dumile’s MF Doom persona may have been more inspired by Dr. Doom from Marvel Comic’sthan Daft Punk, but that didn’t make his mask any less iconic. Between the mask’s mysterious aesthetic and Doom’s talent for wordplay and metaphor, it’s little wonder that Rolling Stone dubbed him hip-hop’s “elusive bard.”
Although Gwar predates Daft Punk by nearly a decade, the heavy metal band takes the idea of masked performance to the extreme. Unlike the other groups on this list, however, Gwar was originally envisioned as a fake opening act for Death Piggy, performed by the members of the real punk band in costume. The heavy metal joke group eventually grew more popular than the group’s original band, and Gwar took over — over-the-top costumes and all.
Nothing to see here, just a legendary guitarist who put aon his head after watching Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers. Brian Patrick Carroll’s masked stage persona is easily one of the silliest (and oldest) examples out there. It doesn’t slow him down at all, either: the artist behind Buckethead has released more than 250 albums, worked with Guns N’ Roses and is one of the fastest guitar players in the world.
The Masked Singer
OK, the Fox TV series is nowhere near as cool as anybody else on this list, but you have to give it credit:is on point.
Honorable mention: Yoko Taro
He’s not a musician, but game developer Yoko Taro is still an artist — and nobody knows what he looks like. He’s almost as well known for his creepy, grinning headgear as for theand Drakengard games. The mask’s deranged smile definitely lends the developer an air of mystery, but he’s always maintained that he wears it so fans aren’t disappointed. “
The explanation I give often is, when you find out that the person writing pornographic novels is an older gentleman, you kind of lose that excitement,” Yoko told Kotaku in 2018. “I think it’s the same in game development, where some people might lose that kind of expectation or excitement toward a game if they find out who’s actually behind it.”