Added: 30 August 2012

220 Volt (Swe)

220 Volt (Swe)
Band Info
Heavy Metal
Sweden (

Frösön, Östersund

1979 - present
Photos / Videos
Official Website
Anders Engberg - Vocals (2013) (Lion's Share, Sorcerer, Section A, Dreams Fall, Twilight, Book of Reflections, Therion, Cut 4)

Mats Karlsson - Guitar (1979-90, 2002 - present) (Cygnus, Voltergeist, Skrock, Factory, Magnum Bonum, Silverline, Inferno, Anne Haavisto Band, Rockbirds, CylinderHeads, The Costanzas, Solar Moon, Terminator III, The Summit)

Thomas Drevin - Guitar (1979-84, 2002 - present) (Inzight, Jamt Aid, Empire, Pipeline, Solar Moon, Nocturne)

Mikael "Mike" Larsson/Krusenberg - Bass (1980-92, 2002 - present) (Voltergeist, Swedish Metal Aid, John Norum, Silverline, Beerdrinkers, Electric Jerk, Terminator III)

Peter Hermansson - Drums (1982-90, 2002 - ?, 2013) (Voltergeist, Swedish Metal Aid, Grand Design,Talisman, John Norum, Herman and the Hot Dogs, Braindestroyers, Stargazer, Solar Moon, Zoom Club, Terminator III)
Former / Past Members
Joakim "Jocke" Lundholm - Vocals (1983-92, late 2000s - present) (Mugabe, Swedish Metal Aid)

Christer "Frille" Åsell/Nääs - Vocals (1979-83, 2002-?) (Donnerblitz, Inzight, Magic, Jamt Aid, Empire, Pipeline)

Per Englund - Vocals (1990-92)  (Blacksmith, Motherlode,
Voltergeist, Dedication, Garbo, Mandrake Root)

Peter Olander - Guitar (1984-92) (Admit, Voltergeist, Swedish Metal Aid, Oxygene, Motjuck, Heavy Sound, Queersling, Beerdrinkers, Boots And Beans, Holy Shit, Terminator III)

Björn "Grizzly" Höglund - Drums (late 2000's - present) (Easy Action, Hoven Droven, Monty Music, Marmeladorkestern)

Tommy Hellström - Bass (1979-80)

Pelle Hansson - Drums (1979-82)
The band was formed in 1979 by guitar players Thomas Drevin and Mats Karlsson. Sometime in April 1979 they made their live debut at a school dance. By then, singer Christer “Frille” Asell (nowadays called Naas) had been recruited. Shortly thereafter, bassist Mike “Larsson” Krusenberg joined, and a short while later drummer Peter Hermansson came along.

The band recorded their first 7” single “Prisoner of war”/”Sauron” and released it in a 500 copies numbered limited edition. By this time they had built quite a reputation as a live act…and the single sold out immediately. It also happened to cross the atlantic and ended up at top 5 on a radio station. By this time CBS/Sony started to show an interest. A deal was signed in early 1983 and the band ended up doing 5 albums for CBS/Sony.

Jocke Lundholm joined the band on vocals, and Peter Olander eventually stepped in for Thomas Drevin on guitar from the third album and on. This line-up recorded 4 albums. "Mind over muscle" 1984/85, "Young and wild" 1987, "Eye to eye" 1988 and "Lethal Illusion" 1990-92 (released 1997)

The band headlined their own tours in Scandinavia and also supported AC/DC (7 shows) and Nazareth (12 shows). In 1992 things came to a halt and the band split-up. Problems with the record company, management issues and general lack of commitment from some members made the situation impossible. They decided to part as friends and that..s what happened.

A few of the guys stayed in the music business playing in cover bands and also backing other artists. The urge to play together again came from transferring old tapes to cd. A lot of stuff was found that didn..t make it to the first albums, things rejected by producers and the record company. This is the kind of stuff that was closer to what 220 Volt was all about in the beginning, and that's what this line-up will try and breathe some life into now.

The band returned to the scene in 2002 after a 10 year break. The line-up now is the same as in 1981-1983. The very same guys that recorded their first ever single and eventually got a record deal with CBS/Sony. So far, 2 new albums have been released. “Volume 1” in 2002 and “Made in Jamtland” in 2005. The 20th anniversary of their first single “Prisoner of war”/”Sauron” was the reason for re-grouping.

“Volume 1” was released in a limited edition (1000 copies only), for the closest fans. It contains new versions of the songs from the first single, plus 3 new tracks, 2 of them "Don..t come my way" and "On top of the world" in the myspace player right now. Plus 5 live tracks (soundboard recordings) from the great Sweden Rock Festival on june 8th 2002.

“Made in Jamtland” is a full live album, the first ever for the band. It was recorded at a few club shows in Jamtland, Sweden…the region where the guys in the band grew up. It contains some of the older 220 Volt material, paired with some of the classics.

BIOGRAPHY (from Musicmight)
220 VOLT was formed during April 1979 in Östersund. The musicians had first gelled in 1976. In quite bizarre circumstances, one of Sweden's best known Heavy Metal bands was founded on a round of miniature golf. When Mats Karlsson's ball went wayward it was retrieved by Thomas Drevin, who threw it back, injuring Karlsson's hand. This sparked a conversation revealing both had interests beyond golf of a more metallic leaning.

Rehearsals took place at Vallaskolan school in Frösön, here poaching frontman Christer "Frille" Åsell from another band and drawing in drummer Pelle Hansson. Some weeks later the original bassist was superseded by Tommy Hellström. In April 1979 220 VOLT conducted their debut live performance at a school dance. Club dates and other school concerts followed, during which the then fourteen year old Mike "Larsson" Krusenberg took the bass mantle. In 1980 220 VOLT performed in Stockholm for the first time as part of a youth club national convention. Their local profile was raised considerably on June 4th 1980 with a show at the Östersund Gamla Teatern being broadcast on radio. In late Peter Hermansson became their new drummer in early 1982.

220 VOLT entered the studio in June 1982 to put down seven demo tracks. Results were positive and in September Kjell Björk from Guntans Records sponsored a second session, this demo including the tracks 'Sauron', 'Prisoner Of War', 'White Powder', 'In The Night' and 'Stand By For Action'. Two tracks from this set would be launched as the band's opening single 'Prisoner Of War' b/w 'Sauron' in November. Live promotion saw a valuable Östersund support to HEAVY LOAD in December. At this same juncture, Rock music in Sweden received a huge boost when EUROPE scored big in the charts. With major labels racing to track down the next hard sensation, 220 VOLT was snapped up after CBS Records had financed a further demo.

Prior to recording the debut, Thomas Witt produced album for major label CBS Records, May 1983's '220 Volt', vocalist Christer Åsell departed to join DONNERBLITZ, EMPIRE then INZIGHT. His 220 VOLT tenure had been cut in the first attempts to record the debut, the label insisting his vocals were not up to par. He eventually formed the group DAYLIGHT DEALER. A swift replacement was found in Jocke Lundholm. However, Drevin was to depart, teaming up once more with Åsell in EMPIRE, in favour of Peter Olander in 1984.

220 VOLT's second album, again seeing Thomas Witt behind the production desk, was laid down over three weeks in November 1983 at Stockholm Recording Studios. 'Powergames', issued in February 1984, saw cassette versions adding an extra two tracks in 'Screaming For A Riot' and 'City Lights'.

CBS Records thought highly enough of the band to finance a continuous singles campaign and the promotion push also enabled the group to tour as support to the likes of NAZARETH and German Metal band BULLET. The band's third album, 'Mind Over Muscle', saw issue in February 1985. For the North American market the best of the first three albums were combined to form a new release 'Electric Messengers', released that June. With this album to 220 VOLT supported AC/DC in the USA.

The Swedes momentum was stalled however when all of the band, with the exception of Olander, were required to do their national service, effectively putting the band on ice. In this downtime Olander contributed to ex-EUROPE guitarist JOHN NORUM's solo album 'Total Control'.

1987 saw 220 VOLT with military obligations out the way and back to full strength and promoting their Max Norman produced 'Eye To Eye' album, touring as part of the Swedish 'Monsters Of Rock' festivals alongside TREAT and ELECTRIC BOYS.

The band ground to a halt in 1990 but reformed under the new title of VOLTERGEIST touting new vocalist Per Englund, previously with BLACKSMITH. Drummer Peter Hermansson later teamed up with guitarist JOHN NORUM. Subsequently Englund would go on to MOTHERLODE, GARBO and a BLACKSMITH reformation.

An album of previously unreleased 220 VOLT material surfaced during 1997 fuelling anticipation of a reunion. Fans would have to hold their breath for a further five years though as 220 VOLT, citing a line-up consisting of vocalist Christer Åsell, guitarists Mats Karlsson and Tomas Drevin, bass player Micke Larsson and drummer Peter Hermansson, finally got back together for an appearance at the 'Sweden Rock' festival in 2002. The band soon set to work on a comeback album, 'Volume 1', including live tracks culled from the 'Sweden Rock' event, and put in a 20th anniversary gig at Gamla Teatern on November 30th. 'Volume 1', restricted to 1000 copies, sold out within two weeks.

In October of 2004 220 VOLT signed to Swedmetal Records for an early 2005 album release, 'Made In Jämtland'.

IT ALL STARTED IN EARLY 1979 with Mats Karlsson and Thomas Drevin, playing guitars and dreaming of a band. I came in later, when the band was formed. I had nothing to do so why not open a Record Store, and what place can be better than up north in Sweden in small town Ostersund? The name of the store was Guntans Skivor (Records); meaning Guntan was the nickname for my first wife. The store and the wife are all gone for me, but some stuff will never go and that's my early memories of the good guys in 220 Volt.

The record store soon became a meeting point for the head bangers. Mainly because they didn't have to look through all the Carola's, Sven-Ingvars, Jazz, Classic or whatever, to find all the Heavy Metal vinyl they wanted. And even though the Stones was (are) my main band, I did (do) like heavy stuff. The guys in 220 Volt started to hang out, bought a few records now and then, helped me in the store a lot and talked about their garage band. That's how I met the boys in the band.

What I remembered, their favourite bands at that time were:
Mats was into Rainbow, Herman (Peter) was a Rush dude, Frille (Christer) was a MadMotorheadHeadbanger, Mikael liked bass players and some Stones (good on you mate) and Thomas liked all the girls and Guntans arse. Jocke, who replaced Frille in 83, was a Judas Priest freak.
Well anyway. I liked the sound of Volt and the total energy on stage.

I felt sorry for them playing gigs for a few beers and free testing of scooter boots. We soon became close friends and I helped them with getting some money for the gigs and sponsored the first single. On the back cover of the single it says "Producer: Kjell Björk", well to be honest the first demo tape and the single was produced by the band. I just thought it was bloody cool to be a producer for once and a good thing for getting laid by groupies. The only thing I did was telling them what sounded good or bad when recording. And together with Herman I insisted on the track "Sauron" for the B-side.

The single was everything but an expensive production. We printed the cover on cardboard sheets and bought toy stamps to print the label. That was fuck'n funny, we were in the record store after hours and folded and stamped labels until we went nuts. On top of that I got this idea of limited edition, so we had to write the figures from 000 to 500 as well. I got the single with number 000. I'm not sure if the band got 000 as well or if they got 001-005. We sold all copies in a couple of weeks, even record stores outside Ostersund made orders. I got no clue how they found out about the release.

Frille was something else on stage and the gigs with him were great, like the ones in Svenstavik and Krokom. For me, a big city dude from Stockholm, it was awesome to see head bangers turning up on snow scooters to see the band. Far out. We posted the first demo to all the main record companies in Sweden and CBS offered a contract pretty soon. In the studio in Stockholm, Frilles voice was sadly not good (strong) enough and CBS insisted of sending him home, telling the band to get a new singer. The rest of the band felt really bad about this and would probably gone home if not Frille had said something like "No sweat, mates. I'll keep on rock'n anyway, don't miss this". They called Jocke Lundholm, who quit his band (called Mugabe or something) in Ostersund and went down to Stockholm straight away.

The number one gig in those days with Jocke was the sold out gig at "Gamla Teatern" in Ostersund the 21st of may 1983. The place was packed and Volt was great. I think it was the first gig with Jocke. We sold 439 tickets in the presale in no time at the record store, the limit from the council was 400 audiences, and otherwise I believe we could easy have sold another 400. I bought the last ticket and I still got that green unused ticket. Unused because being the manager you don't go through the bloody front door. The following gigs where "Battle of the bands" 29th of May at Liseberg - Gothenburg and "Storsjöyran" in Ostersund summer of 1983.

Later, George Reispass at CBS told the band that I wasn't good enough to be there manager. Again the band felt bad. But I had no problem with that whatsoever. I never was a producer or manager anyway. I'm just a Good guy-Born hard and the main thing was the best for my friends in the band.
When the first LP was due to be released (Monday 30th of May 1983), we came up with a dirty trick to get the head bangers in town to buy the album at my store and not in one of the two others.

The bands old friend Micke Eriksson wrote a review from the gig at "Gamla Teatern" and together with photos taken by Michael Johansson it ended up with a special cardboard insert that was only in the albums (first 150 or so) sold at Guntans Skivor. So, if you got 220 Volts first album with the insert in your collection, that's the proof you bought the album at Guntans Skivor and was probably sold to you by one of the guys in the band. - Kjelle Björk
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Songs (343)
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