We recently found out that some metal fans in the Middle East flew all the way to Florida to take part in the 70000 Tons of Metal Cruise, which is basically a huge metal festival on a boat cruise. We met Nahla, an Egyptian photographer and metal enthusiast who got a chance to go, take some killer pictures, and meet some of the bands. We decided to have a chat with her and have her share her experience with Metality's readers.

Photo courtesy of Nahla
What got you interested in photography and metal?

Photos have the incredible ability to freeze a moment, not just showing how something looked, but also makes you recall how it felt. And since everyone sees things differently, I like to register my own emotions and memories.

What got me interested into this kind of music is something that cannot be put into words, everyone gets dragged into certain music when they feel the tones, beats, melodies or rhythms that identifies them, I remember that Manowar, Savatage and Iron Maiden were the first bands that got me into metal music, This was back in like 1994.

Tell us about your experience at 70000 tons of metal. Apart from checking out the bands, how did you spend your time on the cruise?

It has been quite an experience. The cruise “Majesty of the Seas” sailed from Miami to Costa Maya in Mexico with 2000 metal heads from all over the world, and 41 bands playing two sets, each on a different stage and different day.
It had 3 stages with perfect sound, many dining rooms, bars, karaoke and a casino.

What I enjoyed the most was to hang out at the karaoke lounge after the shows, it’s the perfect place for everybody, where most of the bands are gathered, singing and dancing all the night with everybody till morning, it’s the greatest atmosphere you can imagine.

Carcass - Photo courtesy of Nahla
Which band had the best set in your opinion?

Definitely Septic Flesh I was quite overwhelmed by their symphonic set, they played many songs from “The Great Mass” and some of the old remarkable songs “Anubis” and “Persepolis” 

Carcass played an awesome show and the entire deck was jumping when they surprised everybody and played for the first time a cover for Amon Amarth – The Pursuit of Vikings. 

One of the things that attracted me was the new singer of Xandria - Dianne van Giersbergen-, she just joined the band a couple of months ago, and everybody got impressed by her performance on stage.

What are some of your favorite bands, both international and Middle Eastern? 

Pink Floyd are always on the top of my list, then comes lots of metal bands like Therion, Night Wish, Rammestein, Slayer, Kamelot,  Blind Guardian, Dream Theater, Moonspell, Amon Amarth…etc , I was lucky enough to see Amon Amarth on the cruise pre-party , great crowd response, lots of mosh pits and crowd surfing was going during all the show.

Middle Eastern bands, Myrath are my favorite so far, I also like Ascendant, Anarchy, Crescent, Kimaera and Blaakyum.

Are you heading to anymore metal festivals over the summer?

I got my ticket to Wacken after being on the waiting list for some time. Might also go to Metal Days or Brutal Assault.

Swallow the Sun - Photo courtesy of Nahla

Leave a comment