Initially, The 69 Eyes' music style was of glam metal and sleaze rock, influenced by acts such as Mötley Crüe and Hanoi Rocks. However, they began to incorporate more influence from gothic rock bands such as The Mission and, The Cult and The Sisters of Mercy. Their sound was described as a mix of the gloominess of gothic rock with guitar-powered rock'n'roll. Their music continued to show further influence from other rock artists such as The Doors, Elvis Presley, and Billy Idol as well as vampire films and literature. The term "goth 'n roll" is used by fans to describe their style. They are often described as a dark rock band, a term which the band has embraced. In recent times, with the release of Back in Blood
The 69 Eyes have moved back to a more guitar based sound, although gothic imagery and lyrical themes remain forefront in their style.
Formed in the bars of Helsinki, Finland in the summer of 1989 by Jyrki 69, Archzie (formerly of Syyskuu), Timo-Timo, Lotto and Bazie; The 69 Eyes originally had a glam metal sound and were compared to other Finnish Sleaze Metal acts such as Smack and Hanoi Rocks. The band's lineup has stayed the same since 1992 when drummer Jussi 69 replaced original drummer Lotto who had played on the band's first two 7 inch vinyl singles.
The band released their first 7 inch EP, "Sugarman", in 1990, followed by another 7 inch, "Barbarella" in 1991. These are the only two releases that do not feature Jussi. These releases paved the way for the band's first album Bump 'n' Grind
released in 1992 which contained some re-recorded versions of songs from the first 2 EP. This same year, the band released their final 2 7 inch EP's, titled "Juicy Lucy" and "High Times Low Lives". The band's second CD "Motor City Resurrection" was released in 1994 via Japanese Label 1+2 Records. It has since been re-released with 8 bonus tracks worldwide. Though not a full length release, but rather a compilation album (much like Hanoi Rocks' Self Destruction Blues), it collected the majority of the bands early material and contributions to other compilations. It was followed in 1995 by Savage Garden
which featured Hanoi Rocks guitarist Andy McCoy on the track "Wild Talk". Also released during this time were 2 VHS tapes "Motor City Resurrection" and "Savage Tales" available only through the band's self-run fan club (the aptly titled "Get Down to 69") which are seen rarely, if ever for sale online. 1997 saw the release of Wrap Your Troubles in Dreams
, which fans generally mark as the last 69 Eyes "glam-era" album. The title track of this album was re-recorded for the Angels album 10 years later. The goth rock infused Wasting the Dawn
was released in 1999 and was considered a milestone success for the band. The CD was released internationally on Roadrunner Records and marked the band's major label debut. The album's hit single, the title track Wasting the Dawn
lyrically paid tribute to The Doors' Jim Morrison and was released as a digipack CD single. Jyrki 69 developed a concept video for this track which featured long-time friend and collaborator HIM member Ville Valo posing at a snowy cemetery as the ghost of Jim Morrison. This video was released on DVD in Finland with a bonus behind the scenes feature and marked first ever music DVD released in the country. Both the video and feature were later added as extras on 2003's Helsinki Vampires DVD.
In early 2000, the band began working with producer Johnny Lee Michaels in Helsinki who would helm the band's next four albums, and contribute to the fifth. Spring brought the single Gothic Girl
which spent months on the Singles Top 10 and on Finnish nation radio playlists. It became the band's first gold record. This single was a precursor to the sixth album, released in September 2000, Blessed Be
which rose to number 4 on the Finnish Album Charts and stayed in the top 10 for over a month. The album spawned four singles, the aforementioned Gothic Girl
, Brandon Lee
, The Chair
and Stolen Season
. Videos were filmed for the first 3 singles. After the release of Blessed Be
, the band did their first short tour in Germany which included a show at the M'era Luna Festival. Support for the tour was Norwegian rock band Zeromancer.In 2002 the band released Paris Kills
, which would be known as their breakthrough album. It stayed for weeks as number 1 in Finland and went gold in a month of its release. It has since gone platinum. In Germany it rose to number 35 in the first week. After touring Europe and Finland for months, a sold-out show at Helsinki's famous Tavastia Club was filmed and documented in November 2002 for use in the "Helsinki Vampires" DVD.
At the end of 2003, The 69 Eyes signed to EMI Finland as they geared up to record Devils
. The "Lost Boys" single was released in Finland at this time, paying homage to the film of the same name as anticipation for the full length album grew. 2004 saw the release of Devils
, their 8th album, to which they toured the UK in support of Wednesday 13. Once again the album was a success in their native Finland. It became the band's 4th album to reach gold status and the second to reach number one position on the Finnish TOP 40 album charts. It was Released in Finland in October 2004 and in October 2005 in USA through 456 Entertainment.In 2005 The 69 Eyes played nearly one hundred shows around the world in fifteen countries, from Mexico to Japan. Devils
was also released in the USA with an alternate cover from the international release. The band filmed their video "Lost Boys" in Hollywood and the Philadelphia area, directed by MTV star Bam Margera.In March 2006, The 69 Eyes briefly toured the USA for the first time with Program The Dead & Damone, performing live on Last Call with Carson Daly.[1\] This marked the band's first ever US television appearance.Angels, the sequel to the 2004 album Devils, was released in Europe in March 2007. It debuted at number 1 in Finland and has since gone gold. Shortly after their tour with Cradle of Filth & 3 Inches Of Blood, Angels
was released on the 25th of June 2007 in the UK. The first single from the album was "Perfect skin" which went straight to number 1 on the Finnish singles chart. The second single was "Never Say Die". Videos were filmed for both singles and received international airplay.The band did a summer 2007 US tour with Wednesday 13, Night Kills The Day, & Fair To Midland, and supported Within Temptation on tour in the UK in November. They played 125 shows world wide in 2007.
In 2008 the band released their first live album, titled The 69 Eyes: Hollywood Kills. It featured a complete live show recorded at the Whisky a Go Go in West Hollywood in March 2006. The performance featured hits spanning the six latest albums an introduction by Bam Margera and a live cover of The Ramones "I Just Wanna Have Something to Do". The concert was also filmed in its entirety. Five tracks from the performance were released on DVD as bonus content on the Angels/Devils box set and the entire concert was released on the "Back in Blood" bonus DVD.The band began 2009 by touring in Europe as a part of Hellhounds Festival with Tiamat and Ava Inferi. In early 2009, The band started initial recording for their ninth studio album with Grammy award winning producer Matt Hyde. The recording process took place in Los Angeles. It was also revealed that Johnny Lee Michaels provided post-production work in Helsinki. The new album Back in Blood was released 28 August in Europe and the 15th of September in the USA. In early June 2009, Bam Margera directed the music video for the first single from the album, "Dead Girls Are Easy." The video premiered on playboy.com on 17 of July 2009. The 69 Eyes also toured Australia for the first time in mid June, playing in Brisbane, Melbourne, and Sydney. A tour of the United States followed in October 2009, and Jyrki 69 was featured on both FOX New's "Red Eye" program, and CNN International also. In December 2009, the band debuted their newest video for the song, "Dead & Gone" via Myspace. This new video marked the band's third collaboration with Bam Margera. On August 10 the band revealed a contest for fans to create a video for the next single "Kiss Me Undead". The response was overwhelming, and on September 30 the band posted their 14 favorite videos on their YouTube page.In April 2010, during an interview with Sean Twisted of Renegaderadio.net, Rudi Protrudi, frontman & founder of the Fuzztones, reported he had completed work on new song with The 69 Eyes, although further details were unavailable during that time.On the official The 69 Eyes webpage they reported a European tour with Hardcore Superstar and Crashdïet in March and April 2011.Early in 2012, The 69 Eyes began recording their next studio album X
. X was released on September 28, 2012, across Europe and on October 9, 2012, in the United States. The first single from the album was "Red" and featured a music video. The second single was "Borderline." Both singles were available before the album was released in Europe. On February 2013, the band released the singles "Love Runs Away" and "Tonight" simultaneously via iTunes. "Tonight" was released exclusively in Finland while "Love Runs Away" was released everywhere else. Both singles included two previously unreleased tracks, "Rosary Blue" and "Dracula's Castle," the latter being the song Rudi Protrudi reported he had co-written with The 69 Eyes back in 2010.The 69 Eyes will release a double CD compilation of their radio hit singles called “The Best Of Helsinki Vampires” on November 1, 2013. The compilation also includes their brand new single “Lost Without Love.”