E=MC² (Giorgio Moroder album)

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E=MC²
E=MC² 1.png
Studio album by Giorgio Moroder
Released 27 August 1979
Recorded 1979
Genre Electro disco - Italo disco - Dance
Length 48:59
Label Casablanca Records
Producer Giorgio Moroder
Giorgio Moroder chronology
Love's in You, Love's in Me
(1977)Love's in You, Love's in Me1977
E=MC²
(1979)
Solitary Men
(1983)Solitary Men1983
Singles from E=MC²

E=MC² is a 1979 album produced and composed by Giorgio Moroder and Harold Faltermeyer. The album describes itself as "the first electronic live-to-digital album." It was one of the first albums in popular music to use digital recording technology.

Album information[edit]

Concept and recording[edit]

The year 1979 was the 100th anniversary of the birth of physicist Albert Einstein. To join in on the hype, Giorgio Moroder began plans to make an album with digital recording technology after he was inspired by a display stand for Soundstream Inc. This company, founded in 1975 in Salt Lake City, had pioneered digital recording with its work in classical music.

Moroder made heavy use of computers and electronics to make the album, it involved using 25 computerized synthesizers, four computerized keyboards, three microcomputers as well as electronic drums, percussion and vocals.

It took a week to synchronize all of the equipment and six weeks to create the album, it was recorded at Rusk Sound in Los Angeles, Moroder used this studio quite frequently, such as on Donna Summer's Bad Girls album, also recorded in 1979.

Digital audio recording was expensive at the time. Moroder said he recalled it costing around '$15,000 per day' and that he felt nervous that he wouldn't be able to complete the project, as he didn't have the budget of 'Billy Idol' or 'Led Zeppelin'.

The writings were shared between Moroder, Chris Bennett, Keith Forsey and Pete Bellotte. Moroder later used digital recording again for the soundtrack to Scarface.

Compositions[edit]

The music on E=MC² has an infectious, heavy rhythm which includes tracks such as "Baby Blue", "What A Night", "If You Weren't Afraid", "I Wanna Rock You" and "E=MC²", they were all electronically processed to give it an extra bite or a harmonic sharpness.

All tracks on Side A: "Baby Blue", "What A Night" and '"If You Weren't Afraid" are one long 120BPM mix, similar to the concept on Giorgio's 1977 From Here To Eternity album, the instruments used on this album include a Roland MC-8 Microcomposer music sequencer, two Roland System 700 modular synthesizers,[1][2] a Polymoog synthesizer, Roland Vocoder Plus VP-330, and ARP 2600.[1]

Artwork[edit]

To promote the album, a billboard was erected by Casablanca Records on Sweetzer Avenue, Los Angeles, California, of a life size Giorgio sporting a robot-style T-shirt, designed by Shusei Nagaoka, a famous Japanese album art designer, at night time, the billboard would light up, illuminating Giorgio via various bulbs and flashing lights. This robot-style design was later used as the album's artwork, the art design of the album itself was very elaborate, the label of the original LP shows each song's track length down to 5 decimal points. The inner sleeve of the original LP shows a photograph of a digital audio wave of the first track, Baby Blue, along with the album's credits. Various versions of the album cover exist, including different coloured fonts, for example; the UK LP had bright green titles with red subtitles, whilst the US LP has dark green titles with orange subtitles. The Italian release had a different cover altogether.

Videogames[edit]

The songs "E=MC²" and "I Wanna Rock You" were featured in the game Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories on the radio station "Flashback FM".

"E=MC²" vocal credits[edit]

Additional credits are listed vocally at the end of "E=MC²":

  • This album was produced by: Giorgio Moroder and Harold Faltermeyer.
  • All keyboards and programming by: Harold, with a little help from Giorgio.
  • On drums and percussion: Keith 'Foot' Forsey, recorded live to digital - at Rusk sound studio.
  • Digital system by: Sound Stream, incorporated.
  • Roland's Micro-composer, programmed by: Harold, assisted by Brian Gardner.
  • Engineered and mixed by: Harold, Giorgio and Juergen Koppers 'The Floppers'.
  • Second engineer: Steven Smith, assisted by Carolyn Tapp and Roman Olearczuk.
  • Keyboards played on piano-coder, engineered by: Merlin Bogan.
  • Tea and coffee by: Laurie Kanner.
  • Energy equals MC squared.
  • Thank you Albert.

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Baby Blue" (Keith Forsey, Giorgio Moroder) - 4:54
  2. "What a Night" (Harold Faltermeyer, Forsey, Moroder) - 4:54
  3. "If You Weren't Afraid" (Chris Bennett, Moroder) - 5:40
  4. "I Wanna Rock You" (Faltermeyer, Forsey, Moroder) - 6:32
  5. "In My Wildest Dreams" (Bennett, Moroder) - 4:37
  6. "E=MC²" (Pete Bellotte, Faltermeyer, Moroder) - 4:32
2001 CD Bonus Tracks
  1. "Love's in You, Love's in Me" (Bellotte, Moroder) - 3:35 [from Giorgio and Chris, 1978]
  2. "Evolution" (Moroder) - 15:15 [from Battlestar Galactica, 1978]
2013 CD Bonus Tracks
  1. "Baby Blue" (Single Version) (Keith Forsey, Giorgio Moroder) - 3:52
  2. "If You Weren't Afraid" (Single Version) (Chris Bennett, Moroder) - 3:53
  3. "I Wanna Rock You" (Single Version) (Faltermeyer, Forsey, Moroder) - 3:51

References[edit]