Live Report and Photos by: Zenae Zukowski
At 70000tons of Metal, it’s safe to say, if you survive day 2, you’re in the clear. The second day is the longest of the voyage, which began at 10 AM, and if your eyes are awake long enough, it ended just in time for the sunrise.
Masterplan kicked off the morning as they opened up the Pool Deck. Fans from all over the world gathered around to see these German power metal masters conquer the stage as they went into tracks such as “Enlighten Me,” “Spirit Never Die,” “Back for My Life,” “Kind Hearted Light,” “Keep Your Dream Alive,” and “Crystal Night.” Following their performance, it was time to hit the breakfast buffet at the Windjammer, a place where you end up making several stops at. Mind you, the area not only had metal music playing in the background, the food catered to people with an assortment of dietary needs including having a corner devoted to vegans. Essentially, not only did fans get non-stop live music, they were able to eat whatever they wanted whenever they wanted.
English death metallers Benediction surprised the crowd with their ferocious set as they performed tracks from their earlier days with “Artefacted Irreligion” and “Spit Forth the Dead.” It was a well-suited awakening after a carbohydrate-breakfast-filled-morning. Taking a break from the sunlight, it was time to enter the darkened-lit Alhambra Theater just in time for In Mourning’s ominous performance. These gothic metal giants continued to promote their latest effort, 2016’s Afterglow as well as celebrating the ten-year anniversary of their debut album Shrouded Divine.
Following the darkened set, it was time to carry a glass of Captain Morgan to enjoy a dosage of pirate metal as Alestorm ruled the Pool Deck at 1 PM. Not only did they promote their latest effort with 2017’s No Grave But the Sea including the fun track “Fucked with an Anchor,” they also celebrated ten years since their debut, 2008’s Captain Morgan’s Revenge. Alestorm kept the crowd’s attention, and this time around, fans tossed around the massive iconic rubber duck.
Next up, it was time for more morbid tales as Sirenia took the Alhambra Theater stage at 1:45 PM. These Norwegian gothic metallers gave a stunning performance, which was arguably one of their best ones yet. It was evident that their newest vocalist Emmanuelle Zoldan has warmed up a bit since she joined the group full-time back in 2016. Fans welcomed her to the stage, as the band held a diverse set that ranged from their latest effort 2016’s Dim Days of Dolor up until their debut album with “Meridian” from 2002’s At Sixes and Sevens. The darkness continued, but this time it involved lots of sunlight as Swallow the Sun hit the Pool Deck at 2:30 PM. These Finnish melodic doomers continued with the second chapter of 2015’s Songs from the North, as many devoted fans were taken back by their dramatic performance.
After two acts of doom and gloom, it was time for the metal chapel at the Alhambra theater to have some heavy metal fun with Metal Church. Fun was the keyword as these metal legends wowed the audience with endless classics including “Fake Healer,” “In Mourning,” “Start the Fire,” “Gods of Second Chance,” “Badlands,” and “Beyond the Black.” The party continued on the Pool Deck with the Finnish folk metal act Korpiklaani. It was a different kind of fun but, there was lots of vodkas passed around as they continued to promote 2015’s Noita.
The day grew even crazier when thrash giants Exodus took the Alhambra Theater at 5 PM. These legends had an ample amount of energy as they annihilated their set with songs “The Ballad of Leonard and Charles,” “Blood In, Blood Out,” “And Then There Were None,” “Deranged,” “A Lesson in Violence,” “Blacklist,” “Bonded By Blood,” and “The Toxic Waltz.” Sweden’s Evergrey darkened the mood on the Pool Deck as they went into classic tracks as well as songs from their latest album 2016’s The Storm Within with songs “Passing Through,” and “My Allied Ocean.”
The evening turned into complete darkness when Sonata Arctica hit the Alhambra Theater as well as Septicflesh’s performance at the Studio B Ice Rink theater. However, both caused a different reaction from the audience as Sonata Arctica supported their new album 2016’s The Ninth Hour while Septicflesh blasted through their latest effort 2017’s Codex Omega.
The night brightened when Sepultura brought 2017’s Machine Messiah to the Alhambra Theater with them as Sabaton battled the Pool Deck with cargo pants and combative riffs. As the night progressed with food, caffeine, and water, it was time for an ultimate wake up when Meshuggah essentially demolished the Alhambra Theater. These Swedish death metal titans amazed the audience as they ripped into tracks from 2016’s The Violent Sleep of Reason.
Moving ahead, fans enjoyed moshing in the hot tub during Dark Tranquillity’s set while bringing 2016’s Atoma to the spotlight. For those who were still awake, which were many, the after-hours began at around 1 AM with Voivod’s blistering set in the Alhambra Theater. The energy was running based on pure adrenaline rush at that point, as it was time to sneak into one song for Obscura at the Studio B Ice Rink theater.
However, it was Samael’s performance on the Pool Deck which, at that point, ruled the late evening while they promoted their latest effort 2017’s Hegemony with songs “Black Supremacy” and “This World.” For those who managed to stay up at 2:30 AM, were lucky to witness Witherfall’s first-ever-performance at the Alhambra Theater. Their progressive-power metal essence managed to surprise the curious crowd-goers, making it well worth the experience.
Following Witherfall’s debut, it was, unfortunately, time to take a power nap before seeing Battle Beast conclude the night on the Pool Deck at 4:45 AM. Good thing the alarm went off since for those who made it, were lucky to see one of the most powerful sets of the entire second day. Noora Louhimo’s voice for 5 am was stunning as they rocked out songs from their new album 2017’s Bringer of Pain. The night ended with pure metal bliss while over 3000 bodies ached, asking for more and were ready for Day three.