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70.000 Tons Of Metal (part 1 Of 4) in Miami, Florida (USA) am 24.-28.01.2011
Galerie 70.000 Tons Of Metal (part 1 Of 4) - Bands zum Livereview anschauen!
Galerie 70.000 Tons Of Metal (part 1 Of 4) - Bands zum Livereview anschauen!
Galerie 70.000 Tons Of Metal (part 1 Of 4) - IMPRESSIONS zum Livereview anschauen!

Here we go with the Cruise Report. Available in English Language only...

Day 1 - Intro

Do you also think a Caribbean cruise is a rather boring trip for old people? Do you believe that heavy metal and cruise ships do not go well together? You are completely wrong! After four days on the Majesty of the Seas we think that luxury is nice from time to time and absolutely compatible to Metal. But read why.

The event that led us to change our mind was called “70.000 Tons of Metal“ and held on board of the “Majesty of the Seas” at the end of January. After starting in Miami, we took a five-day trip through the Caribbean Sea to Cozumel off the shore of Mexico and then back to Florida. On board: 2038 metalheads, 42 bands and app. 900 crew members. Their only goal: celebrating "the world's biggest floating heavy metal festival” . Fans from all over the world came to Miami for this journey including people from Japan, the Faroe Islands, South Africa, Peru, Saudi Arabia or the Philippines. Most of the fans, though, came from the U.S., Germany, Canada, and Australia.

To be honest, "70,000 Tons of Metal" is not exactly a cheap event. Flights from Europe to the States and a cabin on the ship may cost up to $ 1,500, but the journey was worth every penny. Beside the fact that every band played two shows during the cruise, there was always the possibility to meet your idols as there was no backstage area like at other festivals. All bands were placed in the same cabins and decks as the fans, so that they could even be your next door neighbors. But there were also many other opportunities for fun apart from heavy metal, such as a karaoke bar, a casino with slot machines as well as poker and blackjack tables, a climbing wall, a fitness studio, a small shopping mall and much more. Especially the karaoke bar was a late night meeting place for fans and bands alike. Where else would you have the opportunity to sing karaoke and celebrate until the break of dawn with the Exodus guys, Mikael Stanne of Dark Tranquility or Testament's Alex Skolnick, to name just a few? - Only on the “70.000 Tons of Metal“ cruise, of course.

Day 1 - 24.Jan. 2011

But know let's enter the ship. After arriving at the port of Miami, the check-in was easy and fun at the same time. Every visitor got his so-called Sea Pass. This is your personal ID, keycard for the cabin, and the ships own credit card, all in one. Boarding the ship for the first time is a new experience. It looks like the Love Boat from inside. Carpets on the floor (also in all the venues!), brass-colored polished banisters and officials in a suit. The only thing which reminds you that this is a metal cruise is the hard rock music in the atrium. It’s really a clash of two different worlds.

Just as one metalhead looked a bit baffled when she first saw the luxury liner from the inside, some of the crew eyed the invasive metal horde slightly skeptically. But after a few hours of acclimatization, all strange feelings were gone and the cruise could begin.

We started off with a fantastic lunch at the buffet. Everything was for free. Pizza, noodles, sushi, chicken breast, beef, the salad bar, the sweets bar… We tested the buffet rather extensively as the cabins were not completely finished. But that didn’t matter as there was so much to explore on a huge ship like the “Majesty of the Seas“.
At 2pm the cabins were ready and entering them for the first time was also an interesting experience. With a size of just 11 square meters, they were soon dubbed "the cell” by many. But despite their narrowness they proved to be a good accommodation: exterior cabins also had a balcony or window for a nice view over the Caribbean Sea, whereas interior cabins were connected with the outer world through TV screens. It was funny that in those cabins the first view of the morning (and also the first indication of how long you had indulged in your hangover) was not “real“ but on TV.

Absolute “fun” was the security training, a compulsory exercise which was supposed to teach us what to do in case of an emergency. The instructions were given via speakers which unsurprisingly did not really work with 2000 metalheads: each horn blow was answered with a big “Hell Yeah” chorus by fans and bands. After standing around for a while we were no wiser than before. But who cares - we simply trusted the “Majesty“…

The departure of the ship was delayed for an hour because the crane that was meant to heave all the band equipment on board got stuck in a traffic jam. But nevertheless the Crew was able to build up the stage production in only seven hours!

An hour late EXODUS officially kicked off the party. The Bay Area veterans played on the main stage, the Chorus Line Theater. This venue normally is fully equipped with priority leather seating, but a few rows of seats were removed to make a mosh pit possible. Drinks were served in the seating areas during the shows here and the gallery offered an excellent view. EXODUS played an aggressive and powerful set which offered a colorful mix of old classics and new songs. No surprises at all, but a very energetic start for the “70.000 Tons of Metal“.
Of course, NEVERMORE could not match this high level of aggression at the Pool Stage but they also played a convincing show. The Pool Stage is the coolest stage concept ever seen: from the big pool or the adjacent whirlpools you can watch the bands on the stage as well as party on the surrounding upper deck. Having a drink while lying in the pool and watching your favorite bands is really an awesome experience. The sound was very good, which came as a little surprise due to the fact that we were in the middle of the ocean with loads of gusty winds, especially in the evening.

The German Teutonic steel institution GAMMA RAY played in the theater again. Their song 'Land of the Free' was quickly renamed 'Ship of the Free', an indication of how much the band enjoyed these special shows. Spontaneous variations of songs were common phenomena during these days of “70.000 Tons of Metal“, as was the appearance of guest musicians on the stage.

Parallel to this gig, DESTRUCTION gave their first show at the Spectrum Lounge, a stage that is absolutely perfect for thrash metal. A low ceiling, a low stage and a smoky sweaty atmosphere immediately brought back many memories of the 1980s. Unfortunately, the performances of the bands in the lounge were always parallel to those on the two main stages, so that some bands could not be included in our coverage. Sorry to TYR, BLACKGUARD, ARSIS, RAVEN, VOI VOD, THE ABSENCE, CIRCLE II CIRCLE and last but not least MALEVOLENT CREATION. You were also part of the coolest party ever. That's for sure, but unfortunately we could not see your shows.

We then headed back to the pool where a lot of beer was consumed and SONATA ARCTICA entertained the crowd. The Finnish power metal band was not entirely convincing that evening as the Setlist was dominated by songs from the last two albums. Only when songs like ‘Kingdom Of My Heart’ from their debut were played, the applause roared. Nevertheless the fans celebrated their party with many cold beverages and a good sense of humor.

Later, BLIND GUARDIAN played an outstanding show. Their hits like ‘Valhalla’, ’The Bard's Song’ or ’Welcome To Dying’, accompanied by new material like ’A Voice in the Dark’, immediately transform any venue into a madhouse as they did on the cruise. BLIND GUARDIAN played an awesome show. Nothing more to say about that, just one word: Great!

But even journalists have to eat sometimes. A buffet was served on deck 11 which made grabbing a snack and going back to the Pool Stage fairly easy. Food and drink were top-notch for a metal event: there was a 24 hour buffet which left none of your wishes unfulfilled; you also had the option of a fifties-style burger restaurant with (non-nude) dancing waiters and an „all you can eat“ flatrate for approximately five dollars.
So we unfortunately missed FEAR FACTORY's first show. But we were back in time for UNLEASHED in the Theater. Unfortunately UNLEASHED had to play without singer and bassist Johnny Hedlund, who had had to stay in Sweden for private matters. Sadly Tomas Olsson was not able to replace him completely on the microphone so that the show remained below expectations. But every band had two chances.

At 3 am, FINNTROLL entered the pool stage to celebrate their folky tunes with the fans. Not many followed the call so that the show turned out to be more of a family character. But the small crowd saw FINNTROLL doing a good job. They provided a representative cross section of their albums. However, many fans were not convinced, called it a day and returned to their "cell" at an early stage of the show.

As we swayed back to our cabin, one thing had already become obvious on this first day: although the metal fans celebrated wildly, drunk and disorderly behavior was hardly ever seen. Fortunately that did not change throughout the entire cruise.

geschrieben am 08.02.2011   von Blizzard
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musikalischer Background des Verfassers
NWOBHM; Thrash- / Speed- / Power- / US- / Death- / Doom / Stoner Metal ; Glam / Classic/ Hard Rock & Sleaze,
X   Aktuelle Top6
1. Steel Panther "Balls Out"
2. Steel Panther "Feel the Steel"
3. Gary Moore "After the War"
4. Mötley Crüe "Shout at the Devil"
5. Judas Priest "Defenders of the Faith"
6. Carnage "Dark Recollections"
X   Alltime-Klassix Top6
1. Death "alles"
2. Savatage "alles bis Edge of Thorns"
3. Mötley Crüe "Shout at the Devil / Dr. Feelgood / Girls,Girls,Girls"
4. Overkill "Taking Over"
5. Deep Purple "Live in Japan"
6. Helloween "alles bis Keeper Pt. II"

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