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)
E=MC²
(1979)
Solitary Men
(1983)
Singles from E=MC²
  1. "Baby Blue / If You Weren't Afraid"
    Released: 1979
  2. "If You Weren't Afraid / E=MC2"
    Released: 1979
  3. "Baby Blue / E=MC2"
    Released: 1979
  4. "What A Night / What A Night (Short Version)"
    Released: 1979
  5. "What A Night / If You Weren't Afraid"
    Released: 1979

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.

Album information[edit]

Concept and recording[edit]

In 1979, it was officially the year of Albert Einstein. To join in on the hype, Giorgio Moroder began plans to record the world's first digital album, after being inspired by a Soundstream display stand. He made heavy use of computers and electronics to make the album fit for the digital process. It involved using 25 computerized synthesizers, four computerized keyboards, three microcomputers as well as electronic drums, percussion and vocals.

It took only 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.

Work was also done at Soundstream in Salt Lake City, a company that at the time, was focusing on archiving old classical music. As digital audio recording was so expensive in 1979, Giorgio 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'. It was all produced by Moroder as well as help from Harold Faltermeyer.

The writings were shared between Moroder, Chris Bennett, Keith Forsey and Pete Bellotte. It was the first ever album to be recorded digitally, which gives a cleaner sound eliminating any surface noise used with standard master-tapes. Moroder later used digital recording once 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 main instruments used on this album are the Roland MC-8 Microcomposer music sequencer, the Polymoog synthesizer, and the Roland Vocoder Plus VP-330. He also used two Roland System 700 modular synthesizers and an ARP 2600.[1]

Artwork[edit]

To promote the album, a billboard was erected on Sweetzer Avenue, Los Angeles, California of a life size Giorgio wearing a robot T-shirt, designed by Shusei Nagaoka, with light up bulbs and wires that illuminated at night.

This was later used as the album's artwork. 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.

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 Soundstream 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 Morgan.
  • 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]