Due to his commitments with National Health, Pyle couldn't be on the first tour, thus Dave Sheen replacing him and the band's name changing to Soft HeaD. The album 'Rogue Element (1978) was recorded on that tour. It was followed by an eponymous studio album, this time as Soft Heap (with Pip). Hopper was later replaced by John Greaves, and after Gowen's death in 1981, Mark Hewins joined on guitar. Mark : "John Greaves and I were given the opportunity to change the name of the group when we joined, but we all decided that in respect of Alan Gowen's memory we would keep the HEAP moniker (Hugh, Elton, Alan, Pip)... It could have been... Soft JEMP!".
No records were released during the 80's, although the band kept gigging : four tours during the decade with a total of 25 European concerts, culminating with "a fantastic gig in a circus tent, built especially for us, at the Coutance Festival in 1989 - this was recorded and broadcast live by FR1 Radio" (Mark Hewins). A 1982 recording was eventually released as 'A Veritable Centaur' CD in 1995.