Barge to Hell: Day 0, Gates of Hell Pre-Party
I arrived in Miami, FL Saturday afternoon, two days before Barge to Hell was to begin. Donn Jalbert of Double N Productions has been diligently organizing unofficial pre-parties for the Sunday night before the cruises since the first 70000Tons of Metal (70K) and this year it was the “Gates of Hell Pre-Party”. Along with the unofficial pre-party there was another event held at Flannigan’s pub for people arriving Saturday. The Saturday night event is the perfect place to get to know a bunch of the people who will be on the ship with you – especially if you are traveling alone. I walked in wearing my Vader shirt and was immediately spotted and welcomed in. The night was spent drinking and eating, chatting about all things metal, and listening to stories from people who had been on previous cruises. Even Holy Moses came out to mingle with people.
On Sunday many people like to attend a beach party on South Beach. Best way to find out about this (and other activities) is to stalk the 70k forum (link: www.70000tons.com/forum/index.php). I did not end up attending the beach party because I found a lovely Irish metalhead to go to the science museum with me instead.
Promethean Horde from Tampa, FL played an intense black metal set.
This year’s Sunday night pre-party was held at the Grand Central with Naplam Death and Municipal Waste headlining the show. The venue is apparently in a slightly shady part of town as many people informed me that one should not wander around outside there. Another downside was the drink prices. I swear the same beverage cost a different amount every time – and it wasn’t cheap to drink there. The tip is said to be included in the price though. The bands joining Napalm Death and Municipal Waste were all from around the Florida area.
Starting off were death metallers Masticator from Palm Beach, FL.
A favorite of the night and the rowdiest of the locals was Thrash or Die from Miami.
Municipal Waste had an insane amount of stage divers during their set. The crowd was right into the thrashers and Municipal delivered a blistering set. Vocalist Barney Greenway from Napalm Death even came on stage at one point to join in on a tune.
Lastly Napalm Death took the stage and again the crowd was in a frenzy. Not quite as much stage diving but just as much energy. After this lineup, everyone was geared up for Barge to Hell.
I stayed at the Hotel Urbano (discovered a deal via expedia) before the cruise and it seemed like a good location if you wanted to hit up Flannigan’s and Grand Central as cab rides were around $10. It was just under $20 to get to the port. Since I didn’t go to the beach party I’m not sure about the cost to get there. It’s also walking distance to the Science Museum and close to the Seaquarium. A lot of people stayed at the Holiday Inn at the Port as well.
If you are going on 70K in January 2013 there is already a pre-party planned. The facebook event page can be found here: www.facebook.com/events/446548718738431/