Doughboys (Canadian band)

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OriginMontreal, Quebec, Canada
GenresAlternative rock
Years active1987 (1987)–1997 (1997)
LabelsRestless Records, A&M
Associated actsThe Asexuals, All Systems Go!, Jellyfishbabies, Rusty, Bionic, Ipanema, The Forgotten Rebels
Past membersJohn Kastner
Jonathan Cummins
Scott McCullough
Jon Bond Head
Brock Pytel
Paul Newman
Peter Arsenault

Doughboys were a Canadian alternative rock band founded in 1987[1] that were active in the late 1980s and early/mid-1990s. The band was renowned for its musical blend of punk and pop-style melodies.

Early years[edit]

The band was formed in Montreal by John Kastner in 1987 following his departure from The Asexuals.[2] That year the Doughboys released their debut album Whatever on the Pipeline Records label. In 1996 and 2000 Chart Magazine ranked Whatever as the 28th greatest Canadian album of all time.[3][4]

Throughout their existence the band was characterized by frequent lineup changes.[5] Original guitarist Scott McCullough went on to form Rusty, so Kastner recruited Jonathan Cummins from the punk band Circus Lupus after Cummins had moved to Montreal from Toronto.[6] Jon Asencio (aka John Bondhead) played bass and Brock Pytel was the band's drummer.[7] The band began working with Manager/Producer Dan McConomy who was working for a film by producer Robin Spry that needed a song for a skateboard scene. McConomy asked the band to re-record the guitar solos with Jonathan Cummins. Even though the original label Restless Records had gone bankrupt a deal was arranged so that Electric Distribution in Canada and Malaco in the United States could release the album. The band opened for Red Hot Chili Peppers on their Canadian tour after attaining the No. 1 spot on Independent Retail Sales and College Radio Chart.

Their second album Home Again was released in 1988 on Restless Records.

Pytel left the band in 1990 and moved to India to study meditation. He was replaced by Paul Newman on the band's third album, Happy Accidents. After that album's release and tour Asencio left and was replaced by bassist John Deslaurier, who appeared on the subsequent 5-song EP When Up Turns to Down that features a cover of The B-52s "Private Idaho". The EP was released as part of the contract buyout by Enigma/Restless.[8]

Mainstream success[edit]

Deslaurier left in 1992 and was replaced by Peter Arsenault, formerly of the band Jellyfishbabies. Manager James MacLean arranged a buy out the band's existing recording contract with the US label Restless/Enigma records and the band signed with A&M Records.[9]

They then recruited Daniel Rey and Dave Ogilvie to produce their major label debut, Crush, which was released in August 1993. "Shine" was that album's lead single and became the band's biggest Top 40 hit. Shine won a CASBY for best single in 1994. "Neighbourhood Villain" and "Fix Me" were also notable singles from the album. Crush was certified Gold in Canada in 1996.[10] "Shine" meanwhile was voted in 2000 as the 26th "Top Canadian Single of All Time" by Chart Magazine,[11] and was used by Canadian music video channel Much Music as the theme song for their alternative rock show called "The Wedge."

Their next, and final album to date, was 1996's Turn Me On. It was coproduced by Ted Niceley and Daniel Rey and spawned the singles "I Never Liked You" and "Everything and After". The album furthered the band's pop punk style and Cummins subsequently left the band, citing the band's "lack of edge" and commercial sellout[citation needed]. He was replaced for the remainder of the band's tour by Wiz, the former singer/guitarist for Mega City Four. Wiz co-wrote two songs each on Turn Me On and Crush, including "Shine". However, following the end of that tour (as the opening act for The Offspring) the band broke up.

In 2003 their first demo La Majeure was released.


Kastner subsequently formed All Systems Go! with Marc Arnold and Frank Daly of Big Drill Car. He is married to Nicole de Boer and lives in Silverlake, California. They have a daughter, Summer Lee. His first solo album entitled Have You Seen Lucky was released in June 2006. He has also composed a number of film and TV soundtracks, including work on Phil the Alien, Universal Soldier and B.R.A.T.S of the Lost Nebula. In 2000 Kastner along with Jon Bond Head made a guest appearance on Brock Pytel's solo album Second Choice. In 2008 Kastner toured with Bran Van 3000 and recorded an album with them.

Cummins formed the band Bionic. He also produced a number of albums, and also spent a six-month stint playing with the Besnard Lakes. He writes a music column for The Montreal Mirror.

Wiz formed Serpico and Ipanema, but died in London, England on December 6, 2006 from a blood clot on the brain.[12]

Paul Newman worked as a road manager after the Doughboys broke up. Later he joined The Forgotten Rebels.[13] He currently plays in Big Rude Jake's band Blue Mercury Coupe. Paul currently is one of the main stage techs for Coldplay tours worldwide.

Brock Pytel currently plays guitar and fronts East Vancouver's SLIP~ons.


Doughboys reunited briefly in the summer of 2011 as support for the Canadian leg of a Foo Fighters tour.[14] No plans exist to extend the reunion beyond the tour or to create new music.[15] The band also briefly reunited to play at the Montreal Pagan Festival in 2010 and 2014.[16]


LP albums[edit]



  • Your Related/Stranger from Within/Forecast, 7", (No Label, 1988), (Promo, limited to 500 copies)
  • Home Again Live, 7", (Black Box Records, 1991)
  • Disposable, Single, (A&M Records, 1993)
  • Shine, Single, (A&M Records, 1993)
  • Shine, Maxi, (A&M Records, 1993)
  • I Never Liked You (Turn Me On, 1996)
  • Everything And After (Turn Me On, 1996)
  • La Majeure 1987, 7", (Boss Tuneage Records, 2003)

Compilation albums[edit]

  • More Than a State of Mind, (Restless Records, 1990) - features the track "I Won't Write You a Letter"
  • Black Box Compilation, (Black Box Records, 1992) - features the track Stole Yer Love" (live)
  • Something's Gone Wrong Again: The Buzzcocks Covers Compilations, (C/Z Records, 1992) - features the track "Why She's a Girl from the Chainstore"
  • A Tribute to Hard Core Logo, (BMG Music, 1996) - features the track "Something's Gonna Die Tonight"[17]


  • "Deep End" (1991)
  • "Shine" (1993)
  • "Fix Me" (1993)
  • "Neighbourhood Villain" (1994)
  • "I Never Liked You" (1996)
  • "Everything And After" (1997).[18]


  1. ^ "Doughboys", in Pop_Encyclopedia
  2. ^ CANOE JAM! Pop Encyclopedia - Doughboys
  3. ^ Chart Magazine's Top 100 Greatest Canadian Albums of All Time (Feb. 2000)
  4. ^ Great Canadian Music Poll - Top 100 Greatest Canadian Albums of All Time (1996)
  5. ^ "CANOE - JAM! Music - Pop Encyclopedia - Doughboys". 2004-12-01. Retrieved 2014-08-19.
  6. ^ Singer unfazed by his critics in quest to inject art into rock Archived 2012-09-02 at the Wayback Machine
  7. ^ Noise for Heroes: The Doughboys Archived May 9, 2008, at the Wayback Machine
  8. ^ Doughboys Interview - Suburban Voice Issue No. 35 Archived 2016-01-12 at the Wayback Machine
  9. ^ Montreal Mirror, Where Are They Now? Archived April 11, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  10. ^ "Gold Platinum Database: Doughboys - Crush". Canadian Recording Industry Association. Archived from the original on 2012-02-25. Retrieved 2011-12-18.
  11. ^ Great Canadian Music Poll - Top 50 Canadian Singles of All Time (2000)
  12. ^ "Condolences for Wiz - Mega City Four". 2006-12-07. Retrieved 2006-06-07.
  13. ^ Forgotten Rebels News Archived February 20, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  14. ^ [1] Archived June 7, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  15. ^ [2] Archived March 23, 2012, at the Wayback Machine
  16. ^ "Festival Païen de Montréal Pagan Festival: 5e Festival Païen de Montréal — 7 au 10 août 2014". Retrieved 2014-08-19.
  17. ^ "Doughboys discography on". "Doughboys discography" on
  18. ^ "Doughboys", in Pop_Encyclopedia

External links[edit]