9 Songs, 41 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

In an ironic twist suitable to such a literate and contrarian group, Oingo Boingo’s concept album about death turned out to be a rebirth for the long-running Los Angeles outfit. With a new label and a new production style, Dead Man’s Party seamlessly integrates Danny Elfman’s eccentric musical concepts and his band’s natural ability to write danceable rock music. That blend is evident on the album’s trifecta of hits: “Just Another Day,” “Weird Science," and the stunning title track. The band didn’t smooth out its beloved idiosyncrasies to win popular success. Instead, Boingo embedded its quirks in songs that were so tightly crafted and catchy and propulsive that the mainstream couldn’t ignore it. Whether you liked rock or new wave or club music, Dead Man’s Party had something to fit your tastes. Between the big hits are several overlooked gems, including “Heard Somebody Cry” (a percolating funk tune to match “Weird Science”) and “Help Me” (a '60s R&B rave-up conveyed with a splash of '80s neon).

EDITORS’ NOTES

In an ironic twist suitable to such a literate and contrarian group, Oingo Boingo’s concept album about death turned out to be a rebirth for the long-running Los Angeles outfit. With a new label and a new production style, Dead Man’s Party seamlessly integrates Danny Elfman’s eccentric musical concepts and his band’s natural ability to write danceable rock music. That blend is evident on the album’s trifecta of hits: “Just Another Day,” “Weird Science," and the stunning title track. The band didn’t smooth out its beloved idiosyncrasies to win popular success. Instead, Boingo embedded its quirks in songs that were so tightly crafted and catchy and propulsive that the mainstream couldn’t ignore it. Whether you liked rock or new wave or club music, Dead Man’s Party had something to fit your tastes. Between the big hits are several overlooked gems, including “Heard Somebody Cry” (a percolating funk tune to match “Weird Science”) and “Help Me” (a '60s R&B rave-up conveyed with a splash of '80s neon).

TITLE TIME

More By Oingo Boingo