70000tons of METAL
THE WORLD’S BIGGEST
FLOATING HEAVY METAL FESTIVAL
January 24 – 28, 2011
Miami FL – Cozumel MEXICO – Miami FL
Daily updates from Metal-Rules.com’s own JP
DAY ONE – The Descent Into Hell
The first leg of the journey was uneventful, but was enhanced by the complimentary cocktails. By the time of arrival in Montreal, Quebec, we were tired, hungover and it was -23 C. It started to feel more like a metal adventure as we saw more and more metalheads gathering in the airport. We bumped into Pierre from Brave Words & Bloody Knuckles and some of his friends who were excited to get going. At the gate, we met Snake from Voivod who was a little worried about Blacky (bass) possibly not making it through customs. We had to board the plane, so we wished him luck. We were relieved to later see all the band members board the plane.
We arrived in Miami, Florida without incident and I used the in-flight entertainment system to enjoy the Black Country Communion album. My fellow M-R writer, Lord Of The Wasteland had recommended it and it was the only semi-decent album in the entire playlist, except for a UFO compilation album. I suppose the major airlines still don’t realize that they should cater to the Metal travelers. You get a dozen channels of ‘lite-jazz’ but only two hard rock albums in the entire catalogue.
Our first day was spent looking around downtown Miami and the infamous South Beach. Everywhere we went we started to bump into Metalheads from around the world. It was good to see so many Black shirts on the beach! I recognized Tony Kakko of Sonata Arctica on the edge of the beach, introduced ourselves and briefly said hello.
Later that night we ended up arriving at the Transit Lounge a bit early. The server said they weren’t even open but recommended a place called Tobacco Road just around the corner. Apparently it is the oldest bar in Miami and on Feb 26th they are hosting the 4th Annual Kryptonite Metal Fest with over 20 bands on four stages. Check out the venue here at www.tobacco-road.com, it promises to be a great local show.
Back at the Transit Lounge we enjoyed some drinks and visited with Metalheads from around the world while we sampled of the great local Florida Metal bands. An interesting highlight was the set of the band Kamantra. They pleased the crowd, which was a couple hundred strong by this point. They ripped through a dozen covers of classic metal songs by bands such as Dio, Priest and Maiden. That’s not that unique but these kids were about 14 years old and the singer Jason, had a voice that was a cross of Sebastian Bach and Dio. The kid can sing! The pre-party was a complete success. It was well run with two stages, one indoor and one outdoor and the local bands put on a great show for the international Metal audience.
We had been awake going on 36 hours and were started to fade, so it was back to the hotel while the party was still raging. We needed to pace ourselves because we knew we had another 40 bands to see over the next few days! We really enjoyed meeting some fellow bangers and here are some of the things they had to say.
“Just by going what Ralph said, he’s the singer of Thrash Or Die and the organizer of the event, it’s important because we have people in town from all over the world to just be on the cruise, and this is the warm-up for that. It’s an opportunity for the Metal bands of Miami and the South Florida to show the world that Miami isn’t just about Reggatone.” (D. Jackson, Miami, Florida)
“At first I thought it was a series of cruises that someone was doing. When it clicked that it was one big event I couldn’t do it, but I couldn’t NOT do it! So here I am!” (Anika Evans, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan)
“I hope the boat sinks and it never happens again so it is one glorious legacy we all leave behind!” (Tyler Forde, Vancouver, BC)
Join us again tomorrow as JP and the Thrashmaster report on the first day of the cruise including Exodus, Nevermore, Destruction, Malevolent Creation, Marduk, Blind Guardian and more!!