Demons (band)

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Origin Stockholm, Sweden
Genres Rock, garage rock, garage punk, garage rock revival, punk rock, hard rock, power pop
Years active 1995-present
Labels Alaska Productions, Gearhead, Steer, Ruff Nite, Savage Magic Records, Ghost Highway Recordings, Retro Vox Records, RYOW-Ken Records
Associated acts The Robots, The Turpentines, New Bomb Turks, The Dragons, MC5, The Stooges, The Velvet Underground, The Hellacopters, New York Dolls
Website Official Facebook
Members Mathias "Hep Cat Matt" Carlsson
Micke Jacobsson

Demons are a punk rock/garage punk band from Sweden. The band includes quotation marks in their name to differentiate themselves from other bands with a similar name.[citation needed] Their music has been described as "punk 'n' roll",[by whom?] but the band claims it should only be described as high-energy rock.[citation needed] Their musical style relies heavily on the energy derived from punk rock. Influences include 1960s garage rock bands such as The Sonics, The Standells and Shadows of Knight, The Velvet Underground, The Stooges and New York Dolls; and punk rock bands such as The Damned, The Heartbreakers and The Saints; and early hardcore punk bands such as Black Flag, Bad Brains and Dead Kennedys. "Demons" has often been compared to contemporary groups like New Bomb Turks, The Hellacopters and Electric Frankenstein.[by whom?]

The band established themselves in the mid-1990s Swedish punk/garage rock scene with releases such as Electrocute and "Demons"... Come Bursting Out!. "Demons" initially gained more popularity in the United States than in their homeland, and thus much of their music has been released on American record labels, most notably Gearhead Records based in Oakland, California. They have completed several US and European tours, including two appearances at SXSW.

The Hellacopters recorded a cover version of Electrocute for their final album Head Off in 2008.

During "Demons" existence other groups unfortunately have used the same name. Actions have been taken to prevent the issue.

Band history[edit]

In the late 1980s, Mathias Carlsson and Stefan Jonsson, both just thirteen years old at the time, formed the band Jawbation with school friends. Drummer Mikael Jacobsson joined later. Jawbation slowly disintegrated and morphed into a new band in 1994, which they named "Demons" on the advice of Lux Interior and Poison Ivy from The Cramps.[citation needed]

A session was recorded in 1995 which was supposed to be the bands debut album. It was never released but used as a promotion cassette called Strings for Hanging and Twanging. In the mid-to-late-1990s, "Demons" tracks appeared on many compilation releases such as Another Real Cool Time - Distorted Sounds from the North and released their debut single "Electrocute" on Ruff Nite Records. Their six-track EP "Demons"... Come Bursting Out! was released in 1998. The album was recorded in Sunlight Studio with Tomas Skogsberg (known for his work with The Hellacopters as well as several notable Swedish death metal bands such as Entombed). The band signed with Gearhead Records in 1999, and released their debut album Riot Salvation in 2000.

After the release of "Scarcity Rock" and its following tour in 2011 the band took a break. They resurfaced for a show in 2015 and recordings followed. In 2016 the Electrocute single was reissued for Record Store Day. In March 2017 the brand new single "Kids are Gonna Cry" was released by Alaska Productions. It had a strong anti fascist message. The next single was a split with UK's The Hip Priests, a collaboration with Savage Magic Records and Cracking Stuff Records. It was released in March 2018. After that "Demons" put out ...Was Here on Ghost Highway Recordings. The band also appear on the festivals Drenched in Beer and Gutter Island Garage Rock Festival.

Several more releases awaits in 2018 as well as appearances with material in films, on soundtracks, compilations and split singles.

Band members[edit]


  • Mathias "Hep Cat Matt" Carlsson - guitars, lead vocals
  • Micke Jacobsson - drums, backing vocals


  • Stefan Jonsson - guitar (years 1995-2005)
  • "Muffins" Brink - bass (years 1995-2004)
  • Tristan "TJ" Jeanneau - bass (years 2004-2017)

Albums and tours[edit]

In September 2001, "Demons" embarked on their first American tour. They were part of a package including The Nomads and The Fleshtones. The Nomads resigned from the tour following the September 11 attacks on World Trade Center. In March 2002, the band went on their second US tour. They began recording their follow up album Stockholm Slump with Tomas Skogsberg shortly after the tour ended. Before the album was mixed, "Demons" headed out to play the Scandinavian Gearfests (music festival coordinated by Gearhead Records) held in Stockholm, Helsinki and Oslo. After the album's release, they embarked on another coast-to-coast US tour, with the New Bomb Turks. "Demons" performed extensively throughout Europe in 2003. They toured the US again in 2004 after the release of Demonology - If You Can´t Join Us Beat Us, a collection of tracks from compilations and other rare recordings. In 2006, the band toured Scandinavia, Italy, Slovenia and Croatia.

Following the release of the critically acclaimed album "Ace In The Hole", the band joined The Hellacopters for twelve shows on their farewell tour "The Tour Before The Fall. Some shows also included New Zealand band The Datsuns. The Hellacopters also covered the "Demons" song "Electrocute" on the album "Head Off". "Demons" continued to promote "Ace In The Hole" on tours in Sweden and Italy throughout 2009. A single "My Bleeding Heart" was lifted off the album for release and came out on the Italian label Tornado Ride.

At the end of 2010 "Demons" released the album "Scarcity Rock" which was more experimental than earlier releases. The band recorded most of it themselves on a portable studio in their rehearsal space. It was self-released on red vinyl with a free cd inside. Tours in Italy and Germany followed. After this the band took a four-year break and resurfaced with a show, the reissue of Electrocute and the new singles "Kids are Gonna Cry", "DEMONS"/The Hip Priests" and "... Was Here".


Full-length albums[edit]

  • "Riot Salvation" (Gearhead Records RPM 018) (LP/CD 10/00)
  • "Stockholm Slump" (Gearhead Records RPM 032) (LP/CD 9/02)
  • "Demonology-If You Can't Join Us Beat Us" (Gearhead Records RPM 042) (CD 3/04)
  • "R!ot in Japan" (Ryow-Ken Record FZCY-9001/2) (2CD 4/04)
  • "Ace in the Hole" (Alaska Productions ROAAR CD002) (CD/LP 09/08) - Originally scheduled for release in the Fall of 2007 by a new larger Swedish record label.
  • "Scarcity Rock" (Alaska Productions ROAAR LP003) (LP/CD 11/10) - Album press sheet read: "Exploring dystopian subjects, the dark side of psychedelia and ugly forms of 1950s and 1960s subcultures, "Demons" has cooked up a gumbo that is Scarcity Rock." Released on vinyl with a free copy of the album in CD format. A promotional video directed by Matt Broadley was released for the opening track, "Signal Turns Red".

EPs and 10"[edit]

  • ""Demons" ...Come Burst!ng Out!" (Steer Records 10.001) (10" 12/98) - Re-released by Gearhead Records on CD and 12" in September 2000
  • "(Her Name Was) Tragedy EP" (Alaska Productions/Swedish Punks RAM 001) (CD 10/06) - Stefan Jonsson left the band for personal reasons prior to recording the EP, "Demons" continued as a trio.

Singles and 7"[edit]

  • "Electrocute" (Ruff Nite Records RNR 007) (7"- single 11/97) - B side contains tracks "Run Me Over" and "Some Days Are Worse Than Others". All three were written by singer/guitarist Mathias "Hep Cat Matt" Carlsson. The record was exclusively printed on black and red vinyl, with only 1,000 copies made. In 2016 the single was reissued for Record Store Day in a remastered, limited edition, coloured vinyl, hand numbered release housed in its intended original cover. It also had extensive liner notes by Carlsson.
  • "My Bleeding Heart" (Tornado Ride) (7"-single 02/09) - The Swedish magazine Denimzine awarded the single a "nine out of ten".
  • "Kids are Gonna Cry/Déjà Vu You" (Alaska Productions ROAAR 005) (7"- single 02/17) - Kids are Gonna Cry has a strong anti fascist message.
  • "DEMONS"/The Hip Priests" (Savage Magic Records/Cracking Stuff Records SM-038, CS-002) (7"- single 03/18) - Split EP with fellow rockers The Hip Priests.
  • "...Was Here" (Ghost Highway Recordings GHR 182) (7" - single 06/18) - Contains the songs Street Corner of No Return and Satellite Town


  • "Another Real Cool Time - More Distorted Sounds from the North" (Fuzzbomb Records Fuzz 001) (CD 11/96)
  • "Hell On Earth: Hail to Misfits" (Tribute Records Tr 004) (CD 2/97) (re released in USA by Cleopatra in 2000)
  • "Stranded in a Dolls House: A Tribute to Johnny Thunders and Jerry Nolan" (Hurtin' Records 005) (CD 5/97)
  • "Weird, Waxed and Wired" (Radio Blast Records RBO 19) (CD 6/98)
  • "Swedish Sins ´99" (White Jazz Records Jazz 014) (CD 3/99)
  • "Flattery: A Tribute to Radio Birdman Vol 2" (NoMango Records Mark Ivb/fr-016b) (CD 2/00)
  • "Riot on the Rocks Vol 2" (Safety Pin Records Sprotrcd 002) (CD 9/00)
  • "Smash Up Derby" (Gearhead Records RPM 041) (CD 2/03)
  • "The Thingmaker" (Gearhead Records RPM 051) (CD 2/04)
  • "Welcome to Gearhead Country" (Gearhead Records RPM 061) (CD02/06)
  • "Flattery: A Tribute to Radio Birdman Vol 3" (NoMango Records Mark Ivc/fr-016c) (CD 4/07) - A "Best Of" was released on Ghost Highway Records in November 2014 it included Radios Appear Medley by "Demons" with Nicke Andersson on second guitar,
  • "Bootleg Series Vol 1 (Up North/Downunder)" (Bootleg Booze - Booze 024) (LP 12/09)
  • "The Best Of Flattery A Tribute To Radio Birdman" (Ghost Highway Recordings GHR 100) (DLP + 7"-single 11/14)

Other projects[edit]

Carlsson's first band, Rabieshundarna, eventually evolved into Jawbation in the early 1990s. Carlsson has also worked with Belinda Kordic (formerly with STABB), on her solo project, Killing Mood. On her debut album "Just Another Love Song" he contributed with guitar, slide guitar, harmonica and arrangements on several tracks.[citation needed]

The Crypt Kicker Five[edit]

In 1995, Carlsson formed the acoustic group The Crypt Kicker Five (also called The Crypt Kicker 5 and CK5) with Odd Ahlgren from The Robots and Vejde Gustavsson from Mazarine Street. Inspired by street music, primitive folk music, rhythm and blues and artists such as Dr John, they used a one-string acoustic guitar and homemade instruments to achieve a sound that mixed blues, gospel and country-inspired acoustic punk.[1] Later additions to the group were Joakim Ericson from The Nomads, Anders Graham Paulsson formerly with Atomic Swing, and Gustav Bendt from Monster and Moneybrother on saxophone. As a six-piece, they have released two singles,[citation needed] and evolved a unique style, with Ahlgren as a confrontational front man and the band performing their street corner brand of voodoo blues.

Matching Numbers[edit]

In the late 1990s, Carlsson formed the garage band Matching Numbers with Ahlgren, Ericson, and Björn Grunner. In 1998, they recorded a version of Suzi Quatro's "Daytona Demon" for the compilation Swedish Sins '99, released by White Jazz Records.[2] The band later included Paulsson on bass. Matching Numbers appeared on the compilation Riot On The Rocks Vol 2 released by Safety Pin Records, and released a split single with The Immortal Lee County Killers before disbanding in the early 2000s (decade).


  1. ^ "Crypt Kicker 5 Facebook Page - Info". Retrieved 19 May 2011. 
  2. ^ "Various – Swedish Sins '99". Discogs. 

External links[edit]