Boingo (album)

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Boingo
Studio album by Oingo Boingo
Released May 17, 1994
Recorded January 1994
Genre Alternative rock
Length 76:45
Label Giant Records
Producer Danny Elfman, Steve Bartek, John Avila
Oingo Boingo chronology
Best O' Boingo
(1991)
Boingo
(1994)
Farewell
(1996)
Singles from Boingo
  1. "Hey!"
    Released: 1994
  2. "Insanity"
    Released: 1994
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 2.5/5 stars[1]

Boingo is the seventh and final studio album by Oingo Boingo, and the only to be released under their new identity Boingo. Frontman Danny Elfman, whose career as a film score composer was by that time fully formed, decided to completely overhaul Oingo Boingo with a new alternative rock style and line-up. By 1990's Dark at the End of the Tunnel, Elfman felt he was "starting to get bored" with the band's musical direction and that a change was necessary to stay active.[2]

Recording for Boingo started in February 1993, but was postponed when Elfman was commissioned to score The Nightmare Before Christmas with his long-time colleague Tim Burton. Upon returning to the project, the band decided most of the work they had recorded was unsatisfactory and began to collectively improvise in the studio; a technique they had never before used.[3] This spontaneity yielded much longer songs than usual for the band, with the majority of the eleven tracks at over five minutes in length. Ultimately, so much material was recorded that several pieces, including "Water" and "Vultures," were left officially unreleased.[4]

The instrumentation on Boingo is a dramatic departure from all previous work by the band, making use of both acoustic and electric guitars and dispensing with the familiar synthesisers and horns. Brooding orchestral arrangements make appearances on several tracks, orchestrated and conducted by lead guitarist Steve Bartek. Despite the sinister overtones, the album also features softer themes of love and remorse, evident in ballads such as "Can't See (Useless)". Danny Elfman cited The Beatles as a key influence on his songwriting at the time, even paying homage with a cover of "I Am the Walrus".[5] Notably, the song "Lost Like This" was originally recorded in 1983 for the album Good for Your Soul, but never used; it resurfaced during the early Boingo sessions with numerous revisions.

Track listing[edit]

All songs written and composed by Danny Elfman, except for "I Am the Walrus" by John Lennon and Paul McCartney

No. Title Length
1. "Insanity"   7:58
2. "Hey!"   7:43
3. "Mary"   6:28
4. "Can't See (Useless)"   4:35
5. "Pedestrian Wolves"   9:21
6. "Lost Like This"   4:54
7. "Spider"   5:27
8. "War Again"   5:53
9. "I Am the Walrus" (The Beatles cover) 4:09
10. "Tender Lumplings"   0:37
11. "Change"   15:58
Total length:
76:45
Cassette edition bonus track
No. Title Length
12. "Helpless"   3:36

Release[edit]

The songs "Hey!" and "Insanity" were also released as singles, with an accompanying music video for the latter.[6]

A limited edition package designed by Deborah Norcross was issued in a foldout digipak, packaged with an embossed hardcover booklet containing lyrics and additional photography by Anthony Artiaga and Melodic McDaniels.[7] A special edition was also released in Europe featuring an additional song, "Helpless," previously only appearing as the B-side to the "Insanity" CD single. The cassette version of the album also included "Helpless" as its final track.[8] It was the first Oingo Boingo album without a vinyl release.

Released in 1994, the album was promoted with several televisual appearances.[9] Despite all efforts to re-establish their image, Oingo Boingo announced their decision to split in 1995; thus making Boingo the only studio album produced by this incarnation of the band.

Personnel[edit]

Boingo
Additional musicians
  • Rich Sumner & Katurah Clarke: Additional Percussion
  • Carl & Taylor Graves, Julia Waters, Maxine Willard-Waters: Backing Vocals
  • Frederick Seykora: Cello

Production[edit]

  • Produced By Danny Elfman, Steve Bartek & John Avila
  • Engineers: Michael Barbiero, Mike Baumgartner, Martin Horenburg, Bill Jackson, Chad Munsey, Shawn Murphy, Mike Piersante
  • Mixing: Michael Barbiero, Steve Thompson
  • Mastering: George Marino

References[edit]