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The 69 Eyes - Universal Monsters

The 69 Eyes
Universal Monsters
by Craig Rider at 26 May 2016, 11:39 PM

What's up, Metal maniacs? I'm here once again to give you an insight on this Goth 'N' Roll quintet; hailing from Finland: THE 69 EYES, signed via Nuclear Blast Records on their new album: “Universal Monsters”.

The band in question is an odd one for me…I have to try and be very open with this here band, as I'm but a new discoverer of THE 69 EYES. I'll start with – the band has an extensive fan base and an extensive catalogue at their disposal; 10 records, many singles and compilations… clearly the band are in their prime, and with this new release; I delve deep into an album that not only has me wondering if I personally can tolerate this newly found genre, but appreciate what THE 69 EYES has unleashed upon the world… let alone being signed from the mighty Nuclear Blast Records; I can't help but appreciate this venture, that doesn't mean I 100% like it though. Right off the bat; “THE 69 EYES” as a band title is a little, odd? But then again…we already have an abundant amount of bands that have a strange title to their name. Strange? Random if I do say so myself. That's just me unleashing my picky nature though.

What's equally stranger to me; is the vocalist, Jyrki 69? (Sounds like Jerky 69) I don't see the relevance of including “69” in ya name but heck…whatever floats ya boat! While the vocals are definitely the most unique I've heard in a Hard Rock, Goth 'N' Roll band; I sense an English RAMMSTEIN transition with these vocals, another “kind of” strange motive but it really does fit the music if I was honest. And then we have the instrumentals: Bazie 69 on lead guitar; Timo-Timo (you what?), on the guitar, and the additional heavy-weight: Archzie on bass and Jussie 69 make this an utmost strange listen for any Metal fan such as myself; who thrives off Heavy Metal, Thrash Metal, Death Metal and so on…so, if you are looking at this review in relation to finding a new discovery – you might want to brace yourselves in with this one, this is but my opinion on THE 69 EYES though so, no need to judge me too harshly.

Now I can focus on the actual album: “Universal Monsters”; for one, my first listen was a typically found “what the fuck is this? I can only hope it grows on me.” thought. It certainly does grow on me, but as I begin “DoIce Vita”, I hear a sort of electronica hard rock focus which had me feeling a little awkward at Jyrki's choice of vocals; but this is where the beauty of this band come in, the more I listened to “Universal Monsters”…the more enjoyably addicting it actually got. This is the thing with new discoveries as a music fan - you have to be undoubtedly open in any contrast if you really want to get into some new grooves and vibes; for instance, Goth 'N' Roll…is a totally new venture for me so naturally I was stubborn at first to fully enjoy this record. Every song has similar groove to each other; but that's where the brilliance of this band come in, while the groove may be similar…it damn well has an uplifting vibe to it.

Some exerts like “Jet Fighter Plane” and “Blackbird Pie” you probably are thinking “what the fuck?” with the latter song but the addictiveness in the vocals and instruments are so damn enjoyable that you won't care about the strangeness of the said cover. “Lady Darkness” and “Miss Pastis” showcase some similar trend but all the more enjoyable. “Shallow Graves” is an equally more interesting listen where the keyboards make for a nice intrude but I think the keyboards are what make this record the most atmospheric and on good terms with the gothic ambience. “Jerusalem”, “Stiv & Johnny” and “Never” are equally fantastic; I'd have to say the latter song was the most trivial and fun, and then we come to the finale: “Blue” and “Rock 'N' Roll Junkie” (a Mötley Crüe cover) end this fun but strange album on a fantastic whim. In the end; it may seem cheesy and strange, but aren't most things new to the curious?

So that's pretty much my summary of the album in a nutshell; the vocals were a little strange for me to comprehend at first, but the more I listened - the more fun “Universal Monsters” got as an album in general. An abundant amount of rhythmic riffs and fun as hell songs; one can't help but give this record a high score, the album may feel simple…but if one is looking for an enjoyable experience with a feel good vibe then definitely give “Universal Monsters” a go.

Songwriting: 7
Memorability: 8
Originality: 9
Sound Production: 9

4 Star Rating

1. Dolce Vita
2. Jet Fighter Plane
3. Blackbird Pie
4. Lady Darkness
5. Miss Pastis
6. Shallow Graves
7. Jerusalem
8. Stiv & Johnny
9. Never
10. Blue
11. Rock 'N' Roll Junkie
Archzie - Bass
Jussi 69 - Drums
Jyrki 69 - Vocals
Bazie - Lead Guitar
Timo-Timo - Guitar
Record Label: Nuclear Blast Records


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Edited 11 August 2022

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