OINGO BOINGO Boingo (1994) w/ Cassette Bonus Track, “Helpless”

A Final, Otherworldly Vision

Don’t think you’ve heard all Oingo Boingo had to offer unless you’ve listened to their final studio release, Boingo. As swan songs go, it might be one of the all-time greats… though, nobody thought so at the time. Boingo fuses the band’s tight ensemble attack (an over mechanized attack, some say) with Danny Elfman & Steve Bartek’s new-found genius for dark soundtrack orchestration – which, by 1994, included Beetlejuice, two Batmans and a dozen other major films. The result of this fusion, the band’s first album in four years and last studio release is, in a word… dramatic. Boingo is a more organic album, stuffed with stunning vocal harmonies and epic orchestral arcs. Historically, the masses have had difficulty getting past Elfman’s vocal quirks, but give a listen to the breathless, 9-1/2 minute “Pedestrian Wolves,” and the incessant vocal counterpointing. It’s merely an example of how many ideas these guys seem to effortlessly generate. Boingo is a mighty and majestic album, where a densely packed cover of “I Am The Walrus” fits in perfectly, but manages to get overshadowed by the band’s equally elaborate and bombastic originals. Hard to believe a ‘name’ band can make an album this sprawling and dynamic, only to have it largely ignored. It’s no wonder Elfman & Bartek quit the pop life and stuck to film work. With movies, even if most theater-goers don’t know who it is, they’ll at least hear your work. Included here is the rare, R-rated cassette bonus, “Helpless.” Under a buck at Amazon (HERE), which is criminal. The one I got in the cutout bins a year after release had an elaborate 50 page, faux-leather bound booklet. We’ve got some “Weird Science” 12″ mixes (HERE) and a few Elfman/Bartek film scores (HERE) in the archives.

Insanity (7:57)
Hey! (7:44)
Mary (6:29)
Can’t See (Useless) (4:36)
Pedestrian Wolves (9:20)
Lost Like This (4:54)
Spider (5:27)
War Again (5:53)
I Am The Walrus (4:09)
Tender Lumplings (0:38)
Change (15:59)


  • Willard
    June 20, 2011 - 11:08 | Permalink

    Search HERE

  • me
    May 16, 2013 - 11:30 | Permalink


  • RobJam
    April 27, 2014 - 10:44 | Permalink

    Thanks Willard, One of my all-time fave bands, and a great (and as you mentioned, under-rated) album. I have most of Elfman’s soundtracks he’s pumped out over the years, but I really miss his vocals. Finally got a taste of them again on The Nightmare Before Christmas OST which was a real treat. (Oingo) Boingo were amazing to see live too.
    Here’s a couple of extras: Insanity (Remix) and Hey! (Short Version)

    • Willard
      April 27, 2014 - 11:37 | Permalink

      Cool, thanks. You don’t have the complete Maxis for both of these, do you?

      • RobJam
        April 27, 2014 - 21:33 | Permalink

        Sadly, no. But I have a bunch of live stuff, demos and session work. Email me if you’re interested in anything :-)

  • April 27, 2014 - 11:17 | Permalink

    without a doubt one of the most mis-understood and least appreciated albums in all of rock history. totally different than anything they ever did and meant to be listened to in one fell swoop although it’s a lot to take in during an hour’s cd. this album was two years in the making, something hardly every mentioned, the production quality and end result is simply brilliant and outstanding.

    • Willard
      April 27, 2014 - 13:21 | Permalink

      I’m guessing you’re a fan of this album.

  • skylark
    April 28, 2014 - 00:35 | Permalink

    Anybody have the soundtrack to Forbidden Zone?

  • ansina
    April 28, 2014 - 16:52 | Permalink

    Thanks! This band is an endless pleasure.

  • Johnny Kinkdom
    April 30, 2014 - 13:41 | Permalink

    Nice posting, Cap’n. Like you, I picked this out of a cutout bin due to it’s elaborate packaging. Glad I did. Saw it recently at the PHX Guitar Festival and record swap. Guy selling it said he had been hauling it around with his other rare CD’s for years and no one (until me) had ever asked him about it. Suggested he play up the Elfman connection. Now I’m gonna check back with him this fall when the show rolls around again, see if he’s had any luck. BTW, for a buck on Amazon, people who like should pick up the real item for the packaging alone.

    • Willard
      April 30, 2014 - 14:09 | Permalink

      And… make sure the seller’s selling the elaborately packaged version. I think its biggest problem is that a lot of people just never heard it. It takes a few spins too, because the music is just as elaborate as the packaging, and the more it sinks it, the more amazing it gets. Imagine a grandiose “I Am The Walrus” taking a backseat to original compositions. They busted their asses on this one and nobody cared.

  • TheWalkingDeadMan
    May 2, 2014 - 20:08 | Permalink

    Thanks Cap’n!

  • Ernie 47
    May 21, 2014 - 07:23 | Permalink

    I lost this one in a move. Thanks.

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