Text: Sabina Jesenovská
Foto: band's archive
THE 69 EYES released their tenth album called X and we had an opportunity to talk with their frontman JYRKI 69. We interviewed him mainly about new record, which seems to be topic number one for their record label. And there is no doubt why, Jyrki 69 on his own said that some of the songs are the best they have ever wrote. The date of release was 28th of September. Whole album was recorded in Sweden with Swedish producer. Even video for pilot single Red was shot there, directed by local director including Swedish playmates.
You did a great progress in your music, can you somehow sum up all those years?
It doesn't feel like twenty years. Time has gone really fast. Playing rock'n'roll with The 69 Eyes is still exciting as it was. When we started twenty three years ago I felt magic between us on rehearsal. I am just coming from rehearsals right now and the magic is still there. The reason why we do this, is just we believe in The 69 Eyes. And on the other hand it's fun, it's fun to be in the band. But to sum it up when we started we were in our early twenties / late teens and the music sounds like that. Young guys who are into sleaze and glam rock and hungry for parties and want to make wild rock'n'roll. It took ten years to establish The 69 Eyes sound. By the time we had a record called Wasting The Down and after that we had Blessed Be. And I think that when Blessed Be came out it really established The 69 Eyes sound. We introduced keyboards to our music and that made it more melodic than before. The early records are more lame, like an excuse to have a music out and tour and have a parties and then at that point we really started to get better in writing music. After Blessed Be they started to play us in radio. There was a little break actually, the last album Back In Blood was recorded in Hollywood. We wanted to sound like that, so it was very loud, loud guitars, powerful drums and aggressive. But none of the record was played in radio, so now with new album we want to get back. It's very melodic, first single Red is very melodic. It's the easiest song of the album and it's on number nine of most played songs in radio in Finland.
You as a band grow from your a bit punk image. Which is your favourite period or CD?
I really like the new one. It isn't out yet so I am excited about what our fans will think about it. I think it's the best record we have ever done. The best piece of music I have ever been involved. It has some of the best songs we have ever written. On the other hand I think that every record we have done is very timeless. You can't tell about our records in which year it has been done, because it has no elements from those times. We are always excited in creating timeless music.
Which band influenced you the most to write X?
I wanted this record to be made in Sweden and has many Swedish influences. And I was also listening Led Zeppelin's IV at the time.
I heard that your favorite song of the album is Borderline, is it true?
Yes, I think it is the best song we have ever wrote. This is one of those timeless songs. I was DJing last week in Leipzig at the Dark Flower goth club and I played that song and it was amazing to see people dancing for it. I am excited for what that song will bring to The 69 Eyes.
Can you explain the lyrics of the song?
It is very timeless fifties old school rock song, it is like ballad. It's lonely song about guy, who has lost everything. It's also little warning for a girl not to falling in love with this guy.
Do you plan to shoot a video for Borderline?
No, I thing Love Runs Away will be the next single and we will shoot a video for it with the same director as we did Red. That's why I say no by now.
Elvira presents your new video Red. How was it working with her?
It was done separately, so I have never met her. But I am big Elvira fan. It was my pleasure to she represents our video. It was like one of the rock'n'roll dreams comes true. I am very happy and proud about it.
Who did female vocals for song I Am Ready?
It is done by really cool gospel singer from Sweden. She is really famous like Tina Turner tribute artist as well. The woman is called Gladys Del Pilar.
If we speak about female vocals what about tattoo artist Kat von D? Who came with the idea to do a duet with her?
She is friend of mine. We were here in Helsinki for New Years Eve. We went to dinner one night and she said that she is going to make a record and she is going to try out to make a band. She is classical trained pianist so she knows the music very well. And then during the dinner she said that we maybe could do some musical corporation together one day. And I was like: „Hold on,“ because we have one song which could have female vocals. I just jumped into taxi and drove home and immediately emailed the song to her. And she liked the song Rosary Blue. She was very bowed, she was never before in studio. It's great song, it's like our Stairway To Heaven, it's really powerful.
Does she also play piano parts somewhere on X?
No, no, she just sings Rosary Blue duet with me.
Do you plan to continue in this like inviting her to your tour or something like this?
No, but everything is open, I mean it was cool thing to do. All of these collaborations are the best to do with friends. That has nothing to do with record company. And I think it's really nice present from us, because I think that many The 69 Eyes fans like Kat von D.
Kat said in trailer that Rosary Blue means something different to her than to you. So what does the song means to you?
I wrote the lyrics for myself, but if she is singing about loosing love she is singing from her point of view. She tells her story and I tell my. That's the deal.
Why is Rosary Blue available only on iTunes?
There are several ways how to get new CD: digibook, normal CD, iTunes... But I am sure this song becomes a hit, so I think when we have tour edition of CD this song will be added there.
What about tour, do you have it already planned?
We are going to tour this fall all over the Finland. And then in the middle of January we are starting European tour and we are going to tour around about a month. And then in spring we will do some next European shows. Actually, I think we are going to play on some festival in your country as well. I think its going to be Masters Of Rock.
You always take long tour throw Finland. Can you see the differences between playing in Finland and the rest of the Europe?
In Finland The 69 Eyes is a mainstream band. If you go to the show in Finland it's not necessary that all the audience is dressed up in black leather and high heel shoes. There are people who are into normal rock music, because they play us on commercial radio stations. Here we have mainstream audience, but everywhere else when you come closer to the club where we are playing there are very wild looking people. In Europe we are something like a cult band and we have this very cool looking cult audience.