Question of the Week


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Ahoy there MetalSucks readers! Have u ever boarded one of those newfangled heavy metal cruise ships? Sounds amazing right? A festival that floats. A bottomless buffet of br00tality. A metal super-show that u can exit to use a private toilet. Nice!

So it’s wild that this week a high-powered loud music nautical excursion sank in port (figuratively): The first-ever Mayhem Festival Cruise, headlined by big sellers Lamb Of God and Slipknot, was canceled due to um circumstances of some kind. But still we don our seafaring attire for today’s MetalSucks Question Of The Week, a weekly survey of our staff on a recent hot-button issue that’s (nauseously) rocking our metal planet.

Fearless. Controversial. Half-baked. We give it to you straight every Friday afternoon. Straight into the hands of Indonesian pirates. Here’s this week’s question:


Inspired by the new phenomenon of heavy metal cruises like Shiprocked, Barge To Hell, and 70,000 Tons Of Metal, we asked our staff the following question:

Armed with an unlimited budget and booking superpowers, you are curating a sold-out heavy metal cruise weekend; what’s your artist line-up and itinerary?

Wat u think? The MS staff’s expert answers after the jump!


Now taking reservations for the CRUISENING OF DEVASTATEMENT: The world’s only slam-centric cruise! Held on the SS Entorturement, an ocean liner with absolutely NO SHOWERS! Dropping anchor about a mile off the coast of Louisiana in the Gulf of Mexico from September 15 to October 21! Featuring Pathology, Devourment, Pyrexia, Guttural Secrete, Putrid Pile, Dysentery, Short Bus Pileup, and one-man Dying Fetus tribute band RAPE UR DAWG! A seven-hour show each day featuring all the bands playing 26-minute sets! Food and drink served in an above-ground pool filled with hot wings and all-you-can-drink Mad Dog 20/20! Plus killer activities like drunk shuffleboard! ‘Round the clock Hentai viewings! Bong hits in the captain’s cabin! Hurling Busch Light cans at a kid in an Animals As Leaders shirt! Canasta!! Women welcome, but … probably won’t be there. Reserve your place now! CRUISENING OF DEVASTATEMENT! Only $58,000!


It would try my patience to be stuck at sea for days with anyone, let alone a bunch of metal heads — especially somewhere hot. That’s why I avoid summer festivals and I’ll be damned if I’m going to be miserably overheated on vacation. So, my cruise is going somewhere cold and for no more than a week — or I will jump without a lifejacket. And as for the music, it’s easier to just say what I DON’T want:

A) Jock rock bands, i.e. Hinder, Nickelback
B) Hot Topic/Bam Margera bands, i.e. Cradle of Filth, HIM
C) Bands with members featured in reality shows, i.e. Bret Michaels, Vince Neil, Ted Nugent
D) Bands who use excessive neon colors in their merchandise, see E.
E) Made-up-core bands, see D.
F) Metallica

Since we are routed to cold lands, we’ll focus on death and thrash metal with some Vikings thrown in. Black metal bands will be judged individually; I’m on vacation — we don’t want to deal with an international scandal and black metal bands, your track records ain’t great. Also, my cruise ship must have the world’s most delicious cuisine and most soundproof walls in the cabins. And that the girls’ spa and gym be clearly separate from the guys’.


Yes, the Anso Fun Fun Funeral Cruise has killer headliners (Steel Panther, Testament, Deftones) and wicked support acts (The Crown, Look Right Penny, Pathology, Torche, Watain, Alice In Chains), but u get the most face-bang for your floating metal festival buck via the ship’s attractions: Devote a dozen free hours to the fan-band ping-pong-on-Ecstasy tournament. Repair to the ship’s comedy bong-lounge for live sets (Louis C.K., Ricky Gervais, Brian Posehn) and off-hours viewing parties (greatest hits of Patrice O’Neal, Mitch Hedberg, Dennis Miller). Pile into a photo-sticker booth with Marduk and Gojira down in the nitrous chamber of peril. Hit the ballroom to join the judge pool for an Idol-style competition in which band guys are randomly matched to perform on a Flash Gordon-style spiked hover stage. Test your luck in the club-pub where Night Flight Orchestra and Behemoth guys do grueling 24-hour DJ sets and every 50th drink is savagely roofied. Depart reality in the Hall Of Mirrors, where sight is distorted and lines are snorted. Enter the Rush Room, where um Rush is performing always. And as we carve the shimmery waters of the Atlantic en route to our equatorial island destination, hang out on deck with our generously bejugged and scandalously attired crew; but stay sharp lest u trip a catapult mine that flings you cartwheeling oceanward! Careful now — that life preserver is made of PCP. All aboard!


Seriously? I would just go FUCKING NUTS. I mean, my cruise’s theme is “Bands Axl wants to watch multiple times during the course of a cruise.” And since I have unlimited budget and booking superpowers, the other theme is “Bands Axl would really love to see live as of the time this question was asked.” The boat would be someplace warm but would not go anywhere — because who gives a fuck and what if I need something from the shore? Guests would be invitation-only and believe you me, there would not be many of them. Food would be whatever the fuck I felt like eating at any given moment; it’d be safe to bet on a fuckload of lobster, a fuckload of duck, and a fuckload of cannolis from Rocco’s Bakery on Bleecker Street. And I get to make every band’s set list:

Guns N’ Roses (consisting of W. Axl Rose, Slash, Izzy Stradlin, Duff McKagan, and Steven Adler)
Faith No More
Living Colour
Skid Row (with Sebastian Bach)
Anthrax (with John Bush — Joey Belladonna isn’t invited onboard)
Saigon Kick
Pig Destroyer
Chimaira (self-titled album era line-up)
Ugly Kid Joe
Alice In Chains
Ozzy Osbourne, Zakk Wylde, Mike Inez, and Mike Bordin playing all of No More Tears

Ozzy is a serious risk because his voice and stage presence both kinda blow and Zakk might get carried away with guitar squeals. If they’re booed off the stage, then the GN’R reunion plays again.


MetalSucks Presents Seafarer’s Slaughter, a six-day cruise from the tip of Norway to the Antarctic Peninsula.

Day 1: Arctic Stage
Deathspell Omega

Day 2: Temperate Stage, Part 1
Devin Townsend Project
The Ocean Collective

Day 3: Tropical Stage, Part 1
Genghis Tron

Day 4: Tropical Stage, Part 2
Ion Dissonance
The Dillinger Escape Plan

Day 5: Temperate Stage, Part 2
Dream Theater
Spawn Of Possession

Day 6: Anatarctic Stage
Anaal Nathrakh
Blut Aus Nord

All passengers receive a gift bag containing a PIRATE HAT hand-sewn by Maynard James Keenan, a GENUINE HARPOON used by Justin Broadrick, and a PAIR OF SWIM TRUNKS once worn by Devin Townsend. Jager is complimentary all hours of the cruise, and several Juggalos are on-site for nonmusical entertainment. Meals are catered by Andrew W.K. Enjoy the show!


My scenario is entirely, wholly selfish, and I am no fun whatsoever, so I’ve made no allowances for karaoke or bouncy castles or whatever. I just want four stages, an open bar stocked with good strong beer and unending supplies of quality bourbon, and to counteract those two, some healthy dining options. Oh, and a limitless supply of free earplugs.

This is really a giant list of bands I want to see (again), but set in a tropical setting. As I said, I’m no fun:

Stage 1 Venom (playing ONLY early material), Motorhead (doing whatever they fuck they want, because Motorhead), Celtic Frost/Hellhammer (if I could convince them to do it, but you did say unlimited budget…), Sarcofago (same), Thorr’s Hammer, Amebix, Discharge, and Neurosis.

Stage 2 Blasphemy, Revenge, Conqueror (with so much of the Ross Bay Cult in attendance, it’d be easy to pull off!), One Tail One Head, Demoncy, Disembowelment, Black Witchery, Derketa, Mythic, Bestial Holocaust, Drowned.

Stage 3 Saint Vitus, Reverend Bizarre playing In the Rectory Of The Bizarre Reverend, Wormphlegm, Dragged Into Sunlight, Moss, sHever, Samothrace, EyeHateGod, Mournful Congregation, Worship, Corrupted, Ensorcelor.

Stage 4 Antisect, Faustcoven, Midnight, Necros Christos, Nux Vomica, Bastard Sapling, Grave Miasma, Diocletian, Incantation, Sabbatic Goat, Abigail, Barbatos, Iskra, Appalachian Terror Unit, Coffinworm, Black Goat of the Woods.


Wow what we’ve learned today is to never trust a MetalSucks staffer at open sea. You expect a fun ocean adventure but next thing u know, Axl Rose and the Pathology dudes have wrestled each other overboard, fire hoses are engaged to forcibly bathe Watain and Steel Panther, the liner lurches aground in fucking Yemen, and its bug-eyed captain vows that formally attired Australian spiders have overrun the control room. Women and children first!!

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