With a bit more rest we kicked off the day again with the news of the cancellation of the Twilight Force show at the pool deck as they were making some repairs to it, with that in mind we decided to have a long breakfast along with talks about our possible return in 2017, as so far this experience had surpassed all expectations.
We decided then to go to the theater and check out Dia De Los Muertos an L.A band who we had the pleasure to talk before, but have never seen them live until now. Their show was powerful, fast and fucking heavy, I must say that vocalist Rosa Arias delivered one of the most impressive vocal assaults from the bands I got to see at the cruise, you could feel her fury and the spirit of vengeance coming out on every song they played. Their show started with a few people in the front row, but by the end of it, the theater was alive with early rising metalheads trying to kick off the last day.
After Dia De Los Muertos we had a mid-day full with more interviews as the press team had allocated two days for press as it was easier than do it day by day. we must say that we were impressed by how flawless and organized the press was this year. All our requests interviews were scheduled and executed successfully, which made our job way more easy and timely effective. We are really thankful for that.
After we finished doing press for the day, we headed up to the pool deck this was around 2:45 pm, and once we step out outside, we almost got literally blown away by the strong wind that was going on up there. Rhapsody Of Fire seems to have brought with them the literally the Rain of a Thousand Flames, which in this case can only be replaced by cold winds and sprinkled rain. Their show was great, and they fought against merciless winds to finished their set, but unfortunately, mother nature wasn’t in the mood to put up with a cruise ship filled with metal heads, and Rhapsody Of Fire was the last band that played on the pool deck as it got closed for the rest of the cruise.
This called for a reorganization of the day’s schedule which saw several shifts of venues and schedule in order to make up for some of the shows that were scheduled at the pool deck
After that stormy inconvenience, we arrived at a theater that was at full capacity for the traditional Jamming with Waters in International Waters hosted by Annihilator’s Jeff Waters. Here we got to see interesting performances like Metallica’s For Whom The Bell Tolls interpreted by Fernando Ribeiro (Moonspell) on vocals, Thomas Caser (Visions Of Atlantis) on drums, Ricardo Amorin (Moonspell) on guitar, Pete Wiwczarek (Vader) on guitar, and Jesper Anastasiadis (Turisas) on bass guitar.
Or that great rendition of Killed By Death rendering tribute to Motorhead with Cristina Scabbia (Lacuna Coil) on vocals, Timo Somers (Delain), Alexi Laiho (Children Of Bodom), Jaako Jakku (Turisas) on drums and Aires Pereira (Moonspell) on bass guitar. The best covers were Pantera’s Cemetery Gates and Black Sabbath’s Children of the Grave It was fun, interesting and quite energetic seeing this on the spot made up bands delivering such powerful covers of iconic metal songs.
After the Jam and with a new schedule of bands at hand we did a couple more interviews, then got something to eat as we knew the night was just started. Around 7 pm we head out back to the Alhambra theater to check out UK’s doom maestros My Dying Bride, and what a hell of the show they delivered, I don’t know how we missed their first set. Their set along with Paradise Lost’s set were some of the most emotional and more mind driven shows we got to see this year at 70000 Tons, we were impressed by how vocalist Aaron Stainthorpe was able to channel the anguish and the pain on My Dying Bride’s music and lyrics, his stage presence was phenomenal, they along with Samael were some of those special unrated bands at 70000 Tons that put up incredible performances.
Following up, one of the most impressive acts was Nervosa. The Brazilian trio thrashed their way through Pyramid Lounge, and played for one of the most packed houses on the cruise! They were one of the thrashiest acts, and playing next to thrash legends such as Sodom is definitely a career-maker for these girls. Being a new band, it was awesome seeing them get so much reception. Especially for the band only comprised of women, hearing male metal fans talk about how great they are is making it apparent that gender equality is happening in the metal industry. This band only has great things happening in their future.
After that amazing show by Nervosa, we were pumped out, and went back to the Studio B to catch the second set of Delain, which had a different ring compared to their show at the theater, since the stage set up was different, this show felt a bit more personal and more connected to the crowd that was there.
After waiting for the updated line-up because of the storm and with the schedule in hand, Bloodbath came on at 11 pm Being one of the most anticipated bands on the bill, Studio B packed up. The band mainly played stuff off of their new album Grand Morbid Funeral and a few favorites from Nightmares Made Flesh (but nothing from The Fathomless Mastery…). One of the biggest shockers for fans was seeing vocalist Nick Holmes unleash his growls for Bloodbath but belt out cleans for Paradise Lost. It’s apparent he’s one of the most talented vocalists in metal! This band doesn’t play much, but when they do it’s a performance you can’t miss!
After that amazing display of brutality by Bloodbath, we run quickly to check out Twilight Force which was interesting to see, as their sound is in the likes of Rhapsody of Fire, Hammerfall, and Dragonforce. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to catch much of their show as we had to head out to see the Moonspell set at the theater. This second set was way different from their first show. They did an Extinct focused set with some songs from Night Eternal and of course material from Wolfheart. But, before their last song, it was time for the Skipper’s announcement, as Andy announced the record-breaking of having 72 countries aboard 70000 Tons of Metal, it was also announced that we will be going from Fort Lauderdale to Labadee, Haiti and back on February 2-6, 2017 for the 7th edition of 70000 Tons of Metal.
After that Moonspell‘s show and next year’s announcement we decided to put our cameras away and join up the rest of the party, we went down to the Studio B and catch up part of one of the most fun shows of the night. Dragonforce which had everyone going nuts at their mosh pit (yes, there was a fun mosh pit going on during Dragonforce) including, a guy in a dragon suit, a guy in a banana suit along with members of Epica and Delain who were among the rest of the cruisers in the mosh pit. After that, I found Mike (Moonspell) and Arjen (Epica) and decided to have a couple Pina Coladas, then we decided to check out the second show of Samael where we re-joined with the guys of Delain for more drinks and headbanging after that Samael show we decided to get more drinks, and head out for some Karaoke around 5:30 am, at the Labyrinth lounge. After we said farewell to our party buddies of Delain, we got back to the cabin for some deserved nap as we had to clear out the ship by 10 am.
And so it ended one of the most (if not the most) fun and show-packed experience of our lives. 70000 Tons of Metal is a totally life changing experience as we not only made friends with many of the cruisers, were lucky enough to document the whole cruise, interviewed some awesome artists, and see some of the most amazing shows that for a different number of reasons we wouldn’t be able to see in the US as often as we would like. Along the whole experience, there was time to learn and appreciate why 70000 Tons of Metal is different from any other festival/cruise/tour out there.
Things we learn at 70000 Tons of Metal
- That no matter where you are in the world, on land, in air or in the middle of the ocean, metal brings people together.
- We as culture are more diverse, polite, awesome and approachable that you can possible imagine. In a setting like this where everyone is pretty mush partying almost all the time, and where there is alcohol in almost every corner, we never saw a fight, a dispute, or just any act of assholery and that says a lot from the people aboard this cruise.
- Metal fans get offended by a straw hat as opposed to things the rest of the world is offended by such as cursing, violence, gore, and anti-Christinaity/Satanism (this was proved by our friend Hannah who wore a straw hat and was getting questioned by random metalheads.
- We seem to not fit the cruise luxury and how bright and shiny everything is in every corner. from trying to get into the windjammer without a shirt, to a mosh on a hot tube, or build up the biggest stage aboard a cruise ship, in a deck that is not designed for that, and still making it work for days.
- Also, elevator mosh is never a good idea. I apologize again to my friend Brian.
- The concept of time gets lost, as you are comfortable watching a show at 10 am, 4pm as you are comfortable watching a show at 2am or 5:30 am right before sunrise.
- Having your service turned off is actually a very comforting thing.
- The whole ship is a huge backstage area where you can have lunch of breakfast next to the guys of Moonspell or Stratovarius or have a drink and party with the guys of Epica, or just enjoy watching a show next to the guys of Arkona.
- Epica’s drummer likes Florida death metal just as much as I do