The Janitors

TrackAlbum / EP
Here They ComeEvil Doings Of An Evil Kind EP
Trojan GhostHorn Ur Marken
High On GodNoisolation Sessions Vol.1
FalconThe Ghost You Must Seek EP
Death SongWorker Drone Queen EP
GreedEvil Doings Of An Evil Kind EP
BellwellhellNoisolation Sessions Vol.2
A-BowHead Honcho EP
Into The WoodsHorn Ur Marken
Sick StateFirst Sign Of Delirium

The Janitors photo 2
The Janitors: Jonas Eriksson, Henric Herlenius


Janitors playlist



Contributor: Ann Sequinworld

Stökpsych and those long dark Swedish winter nights, perfectly embodied by the Janitors ~ peddlers of heavy drones and fuzzed nightmares since 2004.

Our Top Ten celebrates 20 years of the Janitors, from the Away EP through First Sign Of Delirium to An Error Has Occurred due for release in spring 2024.

When working as janitors, founder members Jonas Eriksson and Henric Herlenius met and formed the first incarnation of the Janitors, fuelled by a love of JAMC and feedback. Together for around eighteen months, the band split and even took a hiatus for around five years. However, the urge to create is compelling. By their own admission, they sort of rushed into recording First Sign Of Delirium in 2010 and almost broke up again.

Listening to First Sign Of Delirium with refreshed ears, it deserves reassessment as a stepping stone, proto-Janitors if you like, the guys are honing their skills ~ the elements are almost all in place by the song Sick State, our No.10 choice.

From their initial line-up, the Janitors have had three bass players, five drummers and many contributing musicians but the core, consisting of Jonas Eriksson and Henric Herlenius, has stayed the same. The band have always written and recorded in English but their essential Swedishness is often reflected in song titles and concepts.

Starting their own label, Your Ears Have Been Bad And Need To Be Punished, the Janitors next recorded the Worker Drone Queen EP in their own studio Psychgrottan (‘The Psych Cave’) where “the main goal was and is to only make music by our own rules and get it out to people that might be interested”. Death Song is our No.5 choice from this EP, a fuzzy earworm built on drone and quite possibly the first song we heard by them.

In the same year they recorded the Head Honcho EP. This was followed by the Evil Doings Of An Evil Kind EP and the Horn Ur Marken LP, both of which examine the rise of the far right, religion, neo-liberalism and the state of our world.

2018’s The Ghost You Must Seek/Falcon were recorded live at Ingrid Studios in Stockholm prior to an appearance at Fuzz Club Eindhoven followed by a Fuzz Club Sessions album in 2019 recorded live in London.

It seems like only yesterday but 15 Years Of Fuzz And Folköl was released in 2019 on Cardinal Fuzz and Little Cloud Records, compiled from a collection of B-sides and unreleased tracks.

Noisolation Sessions Vol.1 in 2020 and Noisolation Sessions Vol.2 in 2022, when the whole world paused for Covid and recording their next album was no longer an option, the band decided to go to their own studio to work on tunes. Tracks were recorded in one night, mixed for a week and then released into the wild, a stripped-down no frills approach, evocative of the time and prevailing circumstances.


Bang up to date and the press release for 2024’s An Error Has Occurred states:

“Everything’s been fucked since David Bowie died or they started up the Hadron Collider,” say the Janitors.

Marking over two decades of activity for the Swedish psych rockers, the recording is informed by heartbreak and loss as well as the dismal state of the entire planet. For The Janitors these two polarities intertwine constantly: “What’s personal is political and vice versa.”

To channel their frustration and anger, the band revived certain songs they’d shelved during the pandemic when working on the acclaimed Noisolation Sessions. They added others, written since, that suited the mood of sticking a middle finger up to the oppressive world around us.

Whereas previous recordings were often layered up gradually, this time the full band (Henric Herlenius, Jonas Eriksson, Anders Thorell and Wilhelm Tengdahl) rehearsed intensely together before laying down everything live, over two days and nights in a converted missionary church.

The new album will be released on Rocket Recordings in May 2024. Can’t wait.

I hope you enjoy The Janitors Top Ten and go on to explore their records, old and new.


Here They ComeEvil Doings Of An Evil Kind (2014)
“Stokpsych – a scuzzy barbed wall of fuzz that channels the dark recesses of the worlds of garage and psych.”

High On GodNoisolation Sessions Vol.1 (2020)
“We just had an urge to hiss and make a shitload of noise.”

FalconThe Ghost You Must Seek (2018)
“A nearly ceaseless barrage of dense, gloomy, droning meditations on the Gothic (at least in the literary sense) obsessions of madness, mortality, exploitation and entrapment.”

Death SongWorker Drone Queen (2012)
“The sound is huge and hypnotically absorbing, all-enveloping and elating.”

Trojan GhostHorn Ur Marken (2017)
“When the wah-pedal flourishes scream louder than the unholy hounds of hell and manage to scrape the very back edges of your skull, we realised that this is no mere job for The Janitors, this is their distorted destiny.”

GreedEvil Doings Of An Evil Kind (2014)
“Dark begets darker and the band become the centre of an ever swirling soundscape of noise, drone and fuzz.”

BellwellhellNoisolation Sessions Vol.2 (2022)
“At first, it was just mayhem and loud as fuck, we wanted to shock the audience and look cool while doing it.”

A-BowHead Honcho (2012)
“Heavy sonic sludge that gets in through every orifice and proceeds to swirl all about, let it in.”

Into The WoodsHorn Ur Marken (2017)
“That cool dark-psych-garage feel The Janitors have honed since their beginnings bodes well for the future of mankind, there are no songs, only epics.”

Sick StateFirst Sign Of Delirium (2010)
“This is their distorted destiny, their natural state of being, ensnared by snarled sound.”




Bubbling Under

Anger The WorldAn Error Has Occurred (2024)



Isolation (Joy Division) – Noisolation Sessions Vol.1 (2020)


Ketamine (Mark Lanegan) – self-released on bandcamp (2022)



Coming Down – Strssmmnt RemixDrone Head (2013)


Essential Labels

Your Ears Have Been Bad And Need To Be Punished
Bad Afro Records
Cardinal Fuzz
Little Cloud Records
Fuzz Club
Rocket Recordings


colourhorizon reviews

First Sign Of Delirium (album)
Drone Head (album)
Here They Come (single)
Evil Doings Of An Evil Kind (EP)
15 Years Of Fuzz And Folköl (compilation)


Ann’s Videos

The Janitors at the Hyde Park Book Club, Leeds (2022)


The Janitors at the Peer Hat, Manchester (2022)



15 Years of Fuzz and Folköl:
B-sides, rarities and random noise 2004-2018


The Janitors photo 1
The Janitors: photo Gianluca La Bruna with permission


The Janitors poster 1
2024 dates … ‘An Error Has Occurred’ out in May


The Janitors Bandcamp

The Janitors Facebook

The Janitors on SongBlog

The Janitors YouTube Channel

Revolt Of The Apes interview (2012)

It’s Psychedelic Baby magazine interview (2020)

The Sleeping Shaman interview (2022)

The Janitors – Fuzz Club Eindhoven full session (YT 2019)

The Janitors perform Here They Come at Fuzz Club (YT 2019)

The Janitors biography (The List)

Ann loves the psychedelic music of the 80s/90s. In between gigs, she runs her own business, Sequin World and Bead Monster. You can follow her on twitter @ann_sequinworld and other social media sites.

These are Ann’s other posts on this site: Loop, The Heads, Thee Hypnotics, Mudhoney, Wooden Shjips, The Lucid Dream, The BellRays, Moon Duo, The Telescopes, MC5, Leatherface, Tad, Kikagaku Moyo, White Hills.

Some of the quotes relating to this top 10 are from reviews at the time of each record’s release, paraphrased here and there and attached to a song. This was a cut-up process and the quote may not originally have been about that particular song but … you know what … it doesn’t matter because it works.

TopperPost #1,112

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