The Cardboard Brains

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The Cardboard Brains were a Toronto Punk Rock band from the first wave of punk and New Wave in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

Formed in 1977 the line-up included John Paul Young (vocals) and Vince Carlucci (guitar) and various bassists and drummers.\ (bassists, Paul Occonnell, Patrick Gregory,Paul Cohen, Rob Ross; drummers, Richard Miller, Dave Richardson, Rey Rattan). Originally the band went through different names including "Media Accident" , "Deadly Alien Foam", and "Psychiatric Prison" before settling on the Cardboard Brains.

Shortly after forming, the band recorded a four song EP which received local airplay with songs including: "I Wanna Be A Yank" and a cover version of the Monkees hit "Stepping Stone". They band next appeared at The Last Pogo concert film documentary and soundtrack playing two songs. This version of the band was a typically loud, fast three chord punk band of the era. In 1979 they recorded another four song EP "The Black EP" which was in a more New Wave direction adding keyboards. After 1981 they were billed as "John Paul Young and The Cardboard Brains" with a sound that was keyboard focused with little in common with their earlier work except for a limited edition live album in 1982 which was originally recorded as part of a live-to-air simulcast for radio station CFNY. Young won the "Most Promising Male Vocalist" at the CASBY Awards in 1982 but would effectively quit the music business shortly afterwards. John Paul Young went into film and voice-over work but has since gone into seclusion. Patrick Gregory (who played bass in 1978-79) went on to become a member of prominent local independent bands "The Woods Are Full Of Cuckoos" and "The Lawn.". Vincent Carlucci would subsequently contribute, two songs, (Love Will Find A Way ,aka Science Has A Way), and "Everybody's Running" to the Golden Reel Award winning movie, "The Gate" (directed by Tibor Takacs , who also produced The Brains White and Black E.P.). In 1989, produced the first Lawn album, "Peace In The Valley". Carlucci formed "Station Twang" in 1984, with Sandy Macfadyen, releasing one vinyl album, "Secret Sides (1984)" one CD, "Adam and Eve (1990)", one split single with Mr. Fizzer (1991), until disbanding in 2010.


  • 1977 Cardboard Brains, 7" "WHITE" EP (Brainco Worldwide)

White EP Guitar: Vince Carlucci Drums: Richard Miller Bass: Paul O'Connell Vocals: John Paul Young Produced by Tibor Takacs

  • 1979 Cardboard Brains, "The Last Pogo" Compilation. LP (Bomb Records), Reissued 2001 by EMI

The Last Pogo. Babies Run My World, Jungles Guitar: Vince Carlucci Bass: Patrick Gregory (AKA John Thomas on "Last Pogo" Liner notes) Drums: David Richardson Vocals: John Paul Young Produced by Keith Elshaw

  • 1980 Cardboard Brains, 12" "BLACK" EP (Guilt Records

Black EP Guitar: Vince Carlucci Bass: Patrick Gregory Drums: Mike Keena Vocals, Keyboards: John Paul Young Produced by Tibor Takacs

  • 1981 John Paul Young, single "Our Time Escapes/Fire Incensed As In Rage" (Canadian Media Development Company)
  • 1981 John Paul Young, "The Life of Ermie Scub" LP (CMDC)
  • 1982 John Paul Young and Cardboard Brains "Live at the Edge" LP (CMDC)

Live @ Edge Guitar, Synths: Vince Carlucci Keyboards, Mellotron: Don Dingwall Drums: Rey Rattan Bass: Robert Ross Vocals, Synths: John Paul Young Produced by The CFNY Mobile Studio

  • 1986 John Paul Young "World within a Dream" single (MEG Entertainment)
  • 1989 Cardboard Brains "Number 26" BOOTLEG. LP (Killed By Death)
  • 1998 John Paul Young "John Paul Young and Cardboard Brains" compilation CD (MEG)


  • Worth, Liz. Treat Me Like Dirt Bongo Beat, 2010
  • Sutherland, Sam. Perfect Youth, The Birth Of Canadian Punk ECW Press, 2012
  • B.George & Martha DeFoe. International Discography Of The New Wave 1982-1983 edition Omnibus Press, 1983

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