The Bruise Cruise Brings Indie Rock to the High Seas

Formerly the province of hair metal rockers and boy bands, the Bruise Cruise is breaking with the rock n’ roll tradition and bringing you the first-ever indie rock cruise. The Black Lips are one of the many seafaring bands gracing the Carnival cruise, which departs from Miami on the last Friday of February. Along with the Black Lips, some of the most beloved figures in the DIY music scene will make their ocean-riding debut, such as The Vivian Girls, Ty Segall, Surfer Blood, Thee Oh Sees, and many more. There are multiple concerts on the boat and an island party in Nassau. The full itinerary will be revealed in January.

Bruise Cruise Black Lips Holiday Special from BRUISE CRUISE FEST on Vimeo.

While indie rockers bask in unruliness, the organizers—who are not virgins to the rock n’ roll cruise—keep things on track. “I went on Vince Neal’s Motley Cruise two years in a row,” says Jonas Stein, one of the organizers. “My paps was involved in setting the event up. It definitely wasn’t my scene, but who can’t appreciate a bunch of 40- and 50-year-olds bustin’ out their old high-top Reeboks and sleeveless shirts showing off their green faded hair metal tattoos? Not me.” Stein and Michelle Cable, Stein’s agent at Panache Booking, came up with the plan while traveling with Turbo Fruits (Stein’s band –who will also be performing on the cruise). “I had a great time on Motley Cruise, and that’s when I started thinking, This would be a lot more fun if we got a bunch of our own people on here watching cool bands.”

Making matters more interesting, this private party comprised of 400 twenty and thirty-somethings will be set against a backdrop of regular cruisers, some 2000 of them shuffleboarding, gambling, and perched buffet-side. According to Cable, all the events are private and open only to “Bruisers,” though Bruisers can take advantage of the cruise’s sybaritic offerings of pools, hot tubs, casinos, massages, golf, and all-you-can-eat ice cream. The $600 cost per person includes meals, a couple of complimentary bottles of wine, shwag, and personal touches, like creative towel animals waiting for you when you return to your room each night. If you want to go alone, you can opt to be paired with a cabin-mate through the singles program.

“It will be an interesting mix,” says Cable. “But I think everyone’s aboard the boat with a common objective—to have fun! I’m excited to see Thee Oh Sees mini-golfing with Grandma Dorothy.”

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