Happy 25th Birthday Who's Afraid Of The Art Of Noise.

Formed in 1983 after Gary Langan and J.J. Jeczalik took a discarded drum riff from a Yes 90125 session and sampled it into a Fairlight CMI, Art of Noise are widely considered to be the pioneers of digital sampling technology.

Rounding out the original incarnation of Art of Noise was Trevor Horn, journalist Paul Morley, and composer Anne Dudley.

Trevor Horn, who had recently disbanded Buggles, was reportedly one of the earliest musicians to purchase the Fairlight CMI (Computer Musical Instrument), the first digital sampling synthesizer. The Fairlight allowed short digital recordings called samples to be played through a keyboard, while its own central processing unit could alter the properties of the sounds. Designed in Australia and initially selling for £20,000, the Fairlight was not within the reach of most artists in 1984.

Art of Noise's debut LP, Who's Afraid Of The Art Of Noise, features the singles "Close (To the Edit)," "Moments in Love," and "Beat Box."

"Close (To the Edit)" takes its title from Close to the Edge, the 1972 album by Yes, whom Trevor Horn sang lead vocals for from 1980-81, and also samples "Owner of a Lonely Heart," the opening track of 90125, which Horn produced.

"Beat Box" was Art of Noise's debut single and originally appeared on the 12" EP Into Battle with the Art of Noise in 1983. "Beat Box" went to #1 on the American dance chart in February 1984, and remained there for two weeks.

"Moments in Love," a Waist High favorite, clocks in at over 10 minutes and was "the celestial love song of 1984."

Quote: Ted Mico for Melody Maker via