God created the Sabbath day and rested on it; Satan created Black Sabbath. And lo, amongst the riffs of these and the likes of other heavy bands, 74 people spoiled their day of rest in Brooklyn's dark and foggy St. Vitus bar, hoping to find love at Speed Metal Dating. The highly successful inagurual event is the brainchild of comedian and musician Dave Hill hosted the evening with the help of BanterGirl Productions. "We're definitely going to do another one at St.Vitus sometime soon," says Trish Nelson, owner of BanterGirl Productions. "Right now we're pitching the event to metal festivals across the globe!"
Unlike Internet-assisted dating, meeting another human being in the flesh before your very eyes allows you to establish a connection based on immediate physical chemistry and making snap judgements, without the pre-screening process of profile stalking. Speed Metal Dating is similar to the swift acceptance and rejection of Tinder—only it's in your face, much louder, and very aggressive. I think the guy who stormed out early, wearing a girl's drink on his face, can attest to this.
The evening began with 37 women secluded in one area, anxiously awaiting an equally anxious group of gentlemen corralled in an adjacent space. Both ends of the venue swelled with energy as attendees sipped their drinks in anticipation.
Soon enough, dueling male and female energies began to interweave, like the most gentle wall of death. The first several mini-dates were bursting with excitement. People were stoked—vibes bouncing all over the room. As dates shifted and drinks were drunk, however, body language transformed as well. People were sitting closer. By the end, everyone was sweaty and pretty sauced. Some looked defeated, while a few others gleefully left with a fellow metal fan.
As witness to dozens of single-and-ready-to-mingle metal enthusiasts at a speed-dating event, I realized there will always be foreign experiences to be had. For one, introducing yourself to 37 strangers for five minutes at a time is both entertaining and exhausting to watch. I tip my hat to those who participated.
Fans of metal music and its subgenres are often perceived as angry or violent, but what I saw this weekend at Speed Metal Dating was the opposite: Instead, I watched as a sea of leather jackets opened themselves up to the idea of connecting with others on a level beyond just swiping left or right, all while guitars tuned to drop D chugged along to the beating of fragile, coal-black hearts.