The Sator Biography
The Early Years
Michael Ohlson got his first drum kit (a snare drum and a high-hat) from his mother.
November 11th - Inspired by the punk movement from England, Chips formed his first band The Rats (members unknown). The very first thing the group did was getting stickers and telling everyone they had a band. (Chips mother draw the rat on the sticker). The band's first rehearsals took place in Torbjörn Lind's bedroom a week later on acoustic guitars (amplified through a tape recorder) and cardboard boxes for drums.
After lots of line up changes The Rats ended up as a
trio and changed name to Skandal. The band was now Chips Kiesbye on bass, Torbjörn Lind on vocals,
guitar and Tomas Jonsson on drums.
It took all of 1978 to obtain instruments (not always legally) and learn
how to use them. Chips first bass was a Duke obtained for 300SEK (legally
by the way).
The set list contained mostly covers of Wire ("12XU"), The Ramones ("Judy is is a punk", "I don't care" and "Now I wanna sniff some glue"), Vibrators ("Yeah yeah yeah"), Slaughter and The Dogs ("We don't care") and Devo ("Mongoloid"). Later the band started writing their own material songs like "Kill them all" and "Storm trooper" all very much in the Ramones vein.
We rehearsed at the school's leisure centre every Saturday and Sunday between 6 and 12 PM. We were always there on the minute 'cause we really needed all the time we could get. I wouldn't get up at 6 to rehearse nowadays, that's for sure.Chips
The punk scene in Borlänge wasn't very big in 1978.
It consisted of around 15 punks and maybe 20 "sympathizers".
And as in every small town everyone is aware of each other so it was big news when Michael Olsson (just a couple of blocks away from Skandal) formed Sinuit with Anders Lindström and Mikael Weinestad. Skandal went to see them rehearse and the two bands played a private show for each other.
I was very impressed by Skandal, especially their drummer but there was no competition between the bands. We knew that we had to stick together.Michael
Michael's band's would change members and names
Some of the names were: The Wombats,
(with Peo Ericsson,
later in Sator Codex),
Sune Senils Trio,
The band in various line-ups played several shows in Borlänge and Falun during 79-80.
At the end of March, Skandal played their first show at Domnarvets skola in Borlänge (a school) supporting two other punk bands on tour together, Disturbers and Fan Club. Both came from other small towns in the region. The second Skandal gig took place a week later on April 6 at Humlan, a Christian youth club. Once again with the same bands on the bill.
The two shows was really a success for us. The small but enthusiastic crowd loved us. Disturbers and Fan Club did not ask us to join them on any more dates.Chips
In May the band Kaos played a show at their
rehearsal place. This band contained ofMichael Olsson, Chips Kiesbye, Torbjörn
Lind and Mikael Weinestad.
This was just a one-off side project.
It was the first time Michael and Chips played in the same band.
Some songs from the set list: "Pink Flag" (Wire), "Pure
"My Generation" (The Who), "No Brains" (Eater).
Skandal broke up during the summer of 79 after a third an final gig at the boy's school.
I don't remember too much about why we broke up, but I do recall a big fight about trying to tone down the punk image of the band 'cause Tomas and Torbjörn was worried about not getting their summer holiday jobs if they looked too punky. There was an article about the band in the local paper and we tried to look all nice for that reason. I hated that article and I left the band straight after that.Chips
Torbjörn and Tomas got their jobs and quit music. Torbjörn Lind moved to America. Nothing further is known about his whereabouts. Tomas Jonsson, the drummer, died in 1999 in an mountain climber accident.
Chips formed Brülbåjz with Michael Olsson on drums, Peo Ericsson on guitar, Stefan "Taggen" Johansson on vocals and Mikael Weinestad on guitar. All "true" punks. They did only one show in Falun, sometime in August 79, before breaking up.
The show was a total disaster. Taggen had the flue and "Weine" was way too drunk. We were all so disappointed that we broke up but we remained friends.Michael
Nov 21st - Another one-off gig. Maniacs played at Humlan. The line-up this time was Michael, Chips, Peo, Lars Eliasson (on vocals) and Mikael Weinestad. This was actually 3 out of 4 of the upcoming Sator Codex members. After this night Chips and Peo returned to their own project Brülbåjz and Michael and Mikael started Burglars with Anders Rehnsted (the last missing piece in the Sator Codex puzzle) on bass and Mikael on guitar.
Sadly (or luckily?) there are no studio recordings of any of Chips and Michael's first bands. Some lo-fi (closer to no-fi) rehearsal tapes still exists.
In January, Brülbåjz reformed but this time with Chips on bass, Peo on guitar, Stefan "Taggen" Johansson on vocals and Tomas Olsson on drums. Tomas had never played drums when he joined the band, but he had the right haircut and attitude. Brülbåjz played no covers, just original songs (all in Swedish).
We tried to learn "Boris The Spider" by The Who but it didn't work out. There were just too many chords in the song!Chips
The band was actually called Brülbåjz (LLR). The LLR stood for "Legoland Rockers" which was our first name for a couple of days but no one ever said the LLR partPeo Ericsson
Brülbåjz is some sort of fake Swedish/English for The Brylcreem Boys. They were some local thugs who used to beat us up. It was our way of getting our revenge by naming a punkband after them.Chips
This line up only played four shows:
Borlänge - Gylleskolan on the graduation day in their school together with one of Michael's bands (name unknown, possibly Bokassa Brothers)
Malung - A punk festival with SST, The End, Sarah Coffman...
Malung - Folkets park (other bands unknown)
Borlänge - IOGT with Sune Studs, Traste och Superstararna, Bokassa Brothers...
I don't think we ever expected any success or recognition. A punkband in a small town in Sweden in 1980 couldn't get any shows unless you arranged them yourself, and there were no record labels signing punks. We didn't even think it was possible to make a record until we heard about a band called PF Commando who had released an album on their own label. We found the address to a studio and a pressing plant in a fanzine called "RIP" and decided to do a single.Chips
In late autumn 1980 Brülbåjz went to Stockholm to record their only single; "Dödens apostlar/EAP/Underhållningsvåld".
We had actually planned to record five songs since they were so short. We thought we could make it in an hour or so. It took six hours to do just three songs! We didn't know anything about the studio and how it works. I remember that I had brought the Borstal Breakout single by Sham 69 as a reference but the engineer said, you can't have the guitars that loud it's not possible!Chips
500 copies of the single was released on the band's own label, Prylén Records. The first 200 copies came with hand-painted letters on the front, some also came with an insert. EAP have now been released on several compilations with rare punk tracks all over the world, and the single is quite expensive today. The photo of the burning mannequin on the sleeve was taken outside Bokassa Brothers rehearsal place. The house would later become Sator Codex rehearsal place. (It was also the location of the Kaos show in -79) The photo was taken by Michael Olsson.
He wasn't in the band at the time but he was the only one we knew who had a camera.Chips
In December, the band broke up again, after not even one year together. The main reason for the break-up was the same old "musical differences".
I had written a new song which I thought was the best one I've ever done. It was called "Jag vill ut". Taggen refused to sing it saying it was too much AC/DC. That was really the end of the band. Me and Peo agreed that it was time to move on, so once again we went after the best punk drummer in town, Michael Olsson. And this time we managed to convince him that he should join us. He brought along his bass player Anders Rehnstedt so I had to switch to guitar. I had no problem with that 'cause I already wrote all my songs on guitar.Chips
During 1980 Michael had kept on going with another million different line-ups and name changes. First Bokassa Brothers then as Spliff.
Spliff: (probably late summer 1980)
Michael Olsson - Drums
Anders Rehnstedt - Bass
Mikael Weinestad - Guitar
A. Ryshaasen - Guitar, vocals
Stefan Johansson moved up north in the woods and was never heard from again. Tomas Olsson now works as an ambulance driver. Both quit music after the break up. Mikael Weinestad kept on playing music in the short-lived act "Cyklon B" in 81/82. The band also featured two former members of Runo Spotters, Sten Hårdbåge and Morgan Källström. Sten Hårdbåge now runs the record label "Outside Society Productions" and Morgan Källström later started a band with Zip Jonsson (after Zip left Sator Codex).