Demo EP (Oingo Boingo EP)

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Demo EP was a self-produced EP promotional record released by the southern California new wave band Oingo Boingo.[1]

Demo EP
EP by
ReleasedLate 1979
RecordedOctober 1979
GenreNew wave, ska, ska punk
ProducerMichael Boshears (a1mixer), Jo Julian
Oingo Boingo chronology
Demo EP
Oingo Boingo

The EP contained four tracks on 10-inch vinyl, including the first version of the band's popular song "Only A Lad" and the unedited version of the title song for the movie Forbidden Zone, directed by Danny Elfman's brother Richard. The record was produced by Michael Boshears, who also produced and mixed Oingo Boingo's soundtrack for the film Forbidden Zone, and Jo Julian for "Only a Lad" (due to a label mistake, Julian is often credited for Boshears' tracks). It was distributed to radio stations and record label representatives in an attempt to land the band a recording contract.[2]

Production of the Demo EP was limited to a total of 130 copies. Each cover was hand painted, initialed and numbered by the band and producer. Artists Charles Unkeless and Sean P. Riley created an airbrush and paint spritzing method, resulting in unique, different designs and colorful schemes for each copy, with the band, producer and friends doing the actual paintings. The Demo EP also included a lyric sheet with artwork of three dinosaurs wearing contemporary attire and a header which read "Modern Music For Modern Reptiles."[3] Also notable was the humorous note at the bottom of the lyric sheet: "Not for sale. If you sell this, you will be hunted and murdered."

The record caught the attention of I.R.S. Records, who issued a slightly altered version in 1980 as the band's first public release, the Oingo Boingo EP. This EP was similarly printed on 10" vinyl but later released as a 12" version. "Forbidden Zone" was replaced with a different track from the demo recording session, Oingo Boingo's cover of "Violent Love". To date, the Demo EP is the only available source of "Forbidden Zone" unedited.

Copies of the EP are considered very rare, with only a few members of the band and the producer still possessing copies. Copies known to exist are numbers 14, 22, 47, 50, 57, 74, 83, 84, 91 and 101. Most of these have been sold over the internet.

Track listingEdit

All tracks are written by Danny Elfman.

Side one
1."Ain't This the Life"3:37
2."Only a Lad"4:16
Side two
1."Forbidden Zone"4:00
2."I'm So Bad"3:53


Oingo Boingo


  1. ^ "Oingo Boingo ep". Archived from the original on 2012-02-16. Retrieved 2012-02-13.
  2. ^ Discogs - Demo EP - 1979 vinyl EP, US
  3. ^ Discogs - Demo EP (images) - 1979 vinyl EP, US