Our last interview with you was about 4 years ago (and you have also been our
very first interview when we started that magazine), so now it is definitely
time to check back and see what you have been up to. Your last record that your
fans could hold in their hands was “Back in Blood” which was released about two
years ago. On your website you said that you are currently working on a new
record which is supposed to see daylight in 2012. Can you already reveal
something about the album?
That`s true. We are currently working on new material for the upcoming record.
We just finished the last shows of our tour here in Finland so now we can
concentrate on writing new songs. What can I reveal about it? Well, same old
story I would say but in a positive way. This is difficult as we are still at
the beginning of the whole process. We haven`t really decided yet what is going
to be on the album. There are a lot of different styles how we could arrange
the songs when we begin to work on a new album. Usually it`s us and than the
record company who decides how the album should look like but the producer has
the final word in the end. He knows best what makes sense and what not.
But we definitely can expect a typical 69 Eyes album?
Bazie: Sure. Of course you want to create something new with every new record.
Why should you make exactly the same album again and again. Though we had
“Devils” and “Angels” which matched together but we wanted those two albums to
be like that. It also always depends a lot on the producer. We could have that
kind of imagination how the album should sound like and than he comes up with
something and the whole thing will go a totally different direction. The
producer can influence a record a lot. Of course, we will stay true to our style
just with a new twist musicalwise.
Will you produce it here in Finland or are you escaping the upcoming long
winter and do the recordings somewhere else?
think we gonna do it in Sweden. We did some co-writing for some guys over
there. It`s not completely fix yet, but we are discussing about that option.
That`s another thing we have to decide before we can really go for the
recordings… It would be nice to escape the winter. But so what, we are in the studio
so it doesn´t really matter if we have let`s say –20 degrees outside or not. We
are locked inside so it doesn`t actually matter were this happens. However I
have to admit that it was a great experience for us to record in sunshine L.A.
Not necessarily because of the weather conditions but more because we could get
away from Helsinki and concentrate on the recordings only. But this recording
trips are quite rarely nowadays as the record sales decreasing everywhere… it
wasn´t too expensive to record in America and we really liked how the album
came out. So there was another option to maybe work with the same producer
again. We were really satisfied how the record turned out to be in the end. As
I said, that`s also one option. Let`s see how it goes.
You are not with your old record company anymore?
we are not with EMI Finland anymore. The record deal ended and our new record
will come out through Nuclear Blast in Europe. That`s also the reason why we
don`t really know when this is going to happen as a lot of paper work has to be
done before the album can be released. We have to renew the contracts and
everything so this takes a bit time. That makes it really hard to set a release
date for the album.
Many bands leave their major record companies nowadays… What do you think is
the cause for that?
Bazie: I really think it is just because the record sales are so low at the
moment. You don`t get this financial support from the major record companies
anymore as you used to get. That was also the reason not to extend our contract
with EMI Finland when our record deal run. We felt that we didn`t get the
support we needed from them anymore. If you bring them lots of money from the
very start like all those huge artists than they put a lot of effort in the
marketing for your band worldwide and everything works out. We always had this
two kind of contracts. We had this major record company here in Finland but in
Europe and the US for example our records have always been released through
independent companies. So we had both sides. I would put it like this, if one
of those major record companies stands behind the artists they have signed it`s
just great, but as soon as they lose the interest in you, you will fade and
that`s not what we wanted to happen so we had to change that. It always depends
on the people you are working with and of course on the outside conditions
which you can`t really control. It just didn`t work out that well for us as we
hoped it would.
What about an own record company? Would you take this into consideration?
Bazie: Well, that`s some kind of option as well. But I would say it is very
difficult to do so. I mean we could do that as we are around since many years
now and we know so many people from the music business which we could ask for
an advice. But think about it if you are a new band and you don`t have any clue
about the whole system and there is nobody you could ask for a helping hand it
might be quite difficult. Than you also need the financial backup.
However you haven`t been lazy when it comes to touring. In April you went on
tour with the Swedish rockers from Hardcore Superstar and Crashdiet. The
European tour took four weeks. How did the idea came up to tour with those two bands
and what was that like for you?
Originally it was planed differently. There was this Swedish band called
Deadstars and they should play together with us. The tour was supposed to be
last year in November but it had to be postponed because of the Deadstars. At
the end they cancelled the whole tour. Crashdiet kind of filled in for them so
it came more or less by accident that we could tour with them. We knew some of
the bandmembers before. The tour was really great. The whole tour was postponed
many times by the way. After the dates had been changed from November to
February, it was postponed again. It was a wonder that it happened in the end
at all. The actual idea for the tour came from our promoters.
Bazie: There were some scheduling problems. Anyways it wasn`t our fault… we
were ready all the time to do it. But it was great to be on that tour. We had
the opportunity to see different venues and different cities than on our
previous tours. Hardcore Superstar are really big in Italy for example and
Sweden of course. That way we had the chance to play bigger venues there. On
the other hand they had the same chance to do so in Germany with us. As we are
well-known there and they are still that kind of an underground band. So it was
vice versa for both bands.
So the different styles of the bands matched the ears of the audience?
Yeah, I think it is nice for the audience to have three bands on stage which
are a little different from each other.
The autumn is around the corner and the festival season has come to an end we
couldn`t see you that much on the festival line ups. The gig at the Kiruna
Festival was your only festival appearance this year. Why did you play only
that one festival gig?
be honest we wanted to play more festivals. I don`t know there weren`t too
many. One reason why we didn`t play in Europe was the money. It is really
expensive to get all the gear over there. With the money they offered, we would
have lost money. It also was a bad summer. Than we also don`t have a new album
out. The festival promoter want some fresh stuff on their festivals. To be
honest I have to say that I`m really disappointed that we didn`t play more
shows. Of course, all those bookers and promoters have their explanations why.
We really wanted to do as many shows as possible. We told them that they could
book us in wherever it is reasonable to play. It was really bad that it turned
out like this. We wanted to play as many shows as we could before we go to the
studios and lock ourselves away from the world outside.
After the release of “Back in Blood” you`ve played about 150 shows in over 25
countries. Where do you take the energy from to do all the shows and to manage
an own rock club and all that stuff?
much easier when you are on tour with a bus for example. But it is really
exhausting if you have to take a plane. We had to do this when we have been
touring South America. We had to move everyday. That`s really stressing and
makes you tired pretty soon. It`s different when you can travel on the tour
bus. You don`t have to change places every day. Everybody in the band has their
own ways to survive while being on the road. We just played eight shows in a
row that was a bit hard. Normally we play six shows and than we take one day
off. That`s quite ok, you can manage that way.
Not tired of touring after all those years than?
Bazie: No. You know we tour a lot when a new album comes out. Than we tour like
six month but than again we take a longer break after that to come down and
relax. You have to take it easy every now and than. You have to recharge your
batteries once in a while.
Besides the work on your new record some members of the band have been quite
busy outside of the band as well. Jyrki was active as a DJ for example. Not
only here in Finland but also in the USA, Spain and the UK. Furthermore he
hosted this years TUSKA disco and your very own club called “Zombie Love Summer
Club” here in Helsinki. Than we have Jussi hosting his own show on Radio Rock,
“Jussin Rockbaari” and besides that he owns the Backstage bar, better known as
Bäkkeri here in Helsinki. How does all this commitments beside the band match
with the band work?
has been quite easy so far. Of course, we`ve played many shows this year but
still there was enough time to do something else. If someone in the bands wants
to do that, why not. Those side activities won`t effect our band life that
much. For example Jussi can pre record his shows for the radio before we go on
tour. Of course it is a question of timing. I mean you have to fit the
You can look back on a very long and successful career. The 69 Eyes where found
in the beginning of the 90`s, you have
released 15 records and you`ve played dozens of shows since than. Name us your
of my personal highlights was definitely the release of our first single, than
our first album. I think you get that special feeling always when you release a
new record. It always is some kind of highlight. Our whole career is a big
highlight for me. I love all our up and downs.
Do you still recall the time when you started the band? Did you expect such a
great success when you found the 69 Eyes?
Bazie: I still remember that very well. Actually we had another band but
somehow this didn`t lead us nowhere so we decided to have a change. But no we
didn`t plan that success thing. We just started the band, than we did a demo to
see how this will lead us. Our first goal was to get the demo done, than to do
at least some decent shows. After the release of “Blessed Be” we realised that
the whole band thing got more and more serious. You have to handle the thngs
more carefully. Because we saw that we can life from what we are doing. I had a
day job back than. After the release of the album I could concentrate on music
Do you miss your dayjob sometimes?
Bazie: Definitely not.
Your future plans besides the work on the new album?
make an good album, to get it out as soon as possible and to play as many shows
Find The 69 Eyes on MySpace & on their homepage