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Archive: Pit Stories Columns

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Pit Stories: Balls Out Bawling

Every week we talk to bands from all over the world and hear some of their favourite stories from the mosh pit.

This week, Therapy? frontman Andy Cairns dishes some dirt on two of the most common things to be seen at a Therapy? show, nudity and crying, two things which really don't go together.

I've seen quite a lot of nudity in my time. Once in Oxford a friend of ours, Diamond Dave, ended up coming over the barrier wearing nothing but a sawn off Coke can taped to his genitals, how he didn't castrate himself Idon't know.

We also get a lot of screaming and crying. We had a hit in Europe with a cover of Husker Du's 'Diane' and for a while lots of gigs would have lots of inflatable dolls flying through the air with the crowd surfers, quite a sight. Yep, nudity and sexual deviance seem to feature heavily among some of the more enthusiastic members of our fans.

We recently spoke to Andy Cairns about the new Therapy? album, "A Brief Crack of Light," touring and why he feels the band have always been outsiders. "A Brief Crack Of Light" will be released on September 11th in North America and is available now in Europe. Be sure to come back next tuesday for more Pit Stories!

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Pit Stories: Don't Leave Your Mattress Unattended

Every week we get the best Pit Stories that musicians and metal lovers have to offer. While normally these stories focus on the frequently violent aspects of fans throwing down during a set, shenanigans definitely aren't limited to the mosh pit during the show itself, as many bands can attest with stories of backstage antics. This week German act Perzonal War shares the following story of sleeping arrangements gone awry:

A really, really funny thing that comes to my mind is a Perzonal War show (at this time still Personal War with “s”) that is more than 10 years ago. I guess it was around 2001 or 2002. We played in a pretty cool location that offered a sleeping room for the bands as well. My bandmates brought in their camping mats – I brought in my mother's air mattress and was called a “pussy” immediately. I am NOT Rock 'n Roll they said. “Shut up” was my comment. “I will not wake up with back problems while you will cry like babies tomorrow."

We had some drinks, it got late and when we returned to the sleeping room I saw a couple having sex on my – or better – my mother's air mattress. I couldn't believe my eyes: “What the hell are you doing here?” “Sorry, just two more minutes” was their comment and they went on riding while I stood there like an idiot!

Speechless I went out of the room; the others laughed their asses off and when I returned my mattress – no joke – was riven and stained!! The other guys could not stop laughing and at the end I was the one who could sleep on the ground with NOTHING under me. When my mother asked me for her air mattress I told her I have unforetunately lost it hahahahahaha.

Perzonal War recently released the new "Captive Breeding" album, and you can check out songs from the release over at Facebook here. Check back in again next Tuesday as we continue to share more tales from live shows from bands and metal fans.

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Pit Stories: Chinese Uprising At A Drone Show

Every Tuesday we check in with musicians and fans to have them share their most memorable mosh pit stories from metal shows. This week's Pit Story of Chinese fans bucking the system to have a good time comes courtesy of vocalist Moritz "Mutz" Hempel from Drone:

Well, we were touring in China and played a show @ the expo plaza in Shanghai. Big fuckin crowd, but sitting on chairs. OK, we knew that this was common in the past, but did not expect that. Anyway…we were shredding and moshing as usual giving a flying fuck about the people sitting, lying or standing. You know, the Chinese audience is always very grateful and responds very well as they do not often get the chance to see western (no country ;)) bands performing. Long story short: they sat.

A couple of guys stood up and started to dance in front of stage but security reproved 'em to be calm and sit the fuck down. They obeyed and sat on their asses. We watched this play a couple o times until a hand full of European metal heads ran towards the stage, screaming and moshin like shit! The security wasn’t sure how to handle these bad ass motherfuckers and did not interfere. Everybody on the plaza used that moment, jumped of their chairs, ran to the stage and started a mosh pit. Out of fuckin nowhere!

We went crazy and started to throw beer into the pit and charred some good old German drinkin' cult with the audience. The stage manager freaked out, yelling NO NO NO no good no good. We replyed YES YES YES very good very good. The rest of the show was legendary and will not be forgotten. For sure, we’ve seen bigger, harder, or more brutal pits, but this one came from the heart and had some kind of symbolic yell for freedom. Freedom to think, dance and shout whatever and whenever you want to. Freedom of opinion, a basic right in OUR constitution. Everybody, who has paid a visit to china, will totally know what I mean! That night, the people did not just stand up for us, but for themselves!
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Pit Stories: Chair-Meets-Head / Pit Revelations

Every week, we catch up with band members and metal fans to get their best stories from live shows. Many bands and fans alike share a fascination for the myriad ways that crowd members can express their love of the music through brutality in the pit. Other bands would rather see the look of a deep emotional connection with the music on the faces of the crowd rather than blood running down their faces. MetalUnderground.com writer Frank Serafine interviewed three Impending Doom bandmates at a Nashville tour stop, who share three stories as well as what they really like to see at a show. More...

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Pit Stories: Vampire Nazi Boot Stomp at Deicide

Each week Metal Underground.com offers our readers a new Pit Story. Usually, these tales originate from band members. This time, however, I’m going to recount one of the bloodiest, most violent pits in my twenty years of attending metal concerts. Skinheads gathered in hundreds at concerts in Detroit during 1995-1996. When a band finished a song, a sea of arms extended outward forming the Nazi salute, “Sieg Heil.” The huge number of shaved, white skulls marked a stark contrast to the mostly African American environments outside of venues such as Harpos and Saint Andrews Hall.

The racism was not the scariest aspect of these shows for those in attendance. Skinheads flailed knees and elbows in the pit, often leading to fellow moshers leaving the circle with bloody noses or worst—being knocked down and stomped by lead-weighted boots. The violence at those shows has never been duplicated at any venue I have attended across the country. I will never forget the first time I experienced this chaos: More...

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Pit Stories: Why Earplugs Are A Bad Idea

Every week we catch up with band members and metal fans to get their best stories from live shows. While the pit is usually where most of the action is, heading outside for a break can come with many dangers all on its own, as Kevin George from Martriden and At Home In Hell recently learned. Kevin shared the following tale of unexpectedly entering a fight while seeing a show with his girlfriend:

Katelynn and I were out at the Odyssey show, decided to go outside because Hooves (the opening band) were actually too loud, even for me. Next door, In This Moment were playing, so there were a lot of confused-with-life individuals hanging around outside.

We were standing there for the time being, trying to decide whether to go get earplugs or not, when we realized that 8 ft away from us was not just some overly excited girls...but one was just thoroughly giving the other a verbal lashing like no other. Some shit about "how dare you tell everyone I work on Sprague" came up...for the uninformed, she got called a hooker.

After about a minute of this belligerent retardfest, the angry one hits the other girl in the face pretty good-like. She then grumbles some other incomprehensible bullshit and cocks her fist back again. The other girl...the receiver, if you will...runs between Katelynn and I, tucks he head between us and cries the most feebly pussified "help me" that a little emo girl who couldn't get in to see In This Moment ever could. It was pretty pitiful, actually.
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Pit Stories: The Oral Treatment

Every week we catch up with metal bands from around the globe to share their best mosh pit stories. While the pit is frequently home to drunken antics and bone breaking action, if you ask enough metal bands for bizarre pit stories, most of them will eventually have a memory or two of overly-amorous show goers.

After last week's lengthy story of a Meshuggah show enhanced by brain-altering fungus, today we've got a much shorter and sweeter tale of a metal fan who just couldn't quite wait to get home to express his affections with his lady. Shaun Glass, guitarist for Dirge Within, had this story to share:

One time - I believe in Houston - we were on stage, midway through our set I look up to see the whole pit stop and stare. What were they looking at? A guy was giving some girl oral sex against the wall of the speakers of the PA! They obviously did not care that 500 metal heads were also watching ha!

In other Dirge Within news, the band recently dropped off the Shockwave Festival, and also shot a music video for "Memories," which will be released soon.

Check back in again next Tuesday for more pit stories shared by metal fans and bands. If you've got a story of pit love, feel free to share below!

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Pit Stories: Fungus Enhanced Meshuggah

The mosh pit is home to some of the craziest events known to the musical world, from flying body parts to bizarre sexual encounters, and each week we find metal bands to share their most interesting mosh pit stories. Today we've got the following tale of Kasey from Ninth Moon Black experiencing technical metal live in a whole new way, courtesy of a few psychedelic fungi:

I once took mushrooms right before going into a Meshuggah concert. For a very brief moment, I contemplated the ramifications then shrugged them away. I quickly popped the magical fungi into my mouth thinking I’d have plenty of time to adjust once I got through the doors but the mushrooms had other plans. While I stood in line for what seemed an eternity, the psilocybin took over my senses. My stomach churned, my mind turned sideways and the antennae of heightened awareness tuned into the world with that bizarre psychedelic slant. As I entered the venue I felt like a ship navigating some alien terrain.

The Faceless were in full swing and never before had I experienced music so terrifying, yet so awesome. The venue was already near capacity and the floor a sea of movement. I hugged the walls trying desperately to avoid any contact with the people moshing as well as the extraterrestrial spirits hovering above the crowd. They watched me with their sinister gaze that was most likely only visible to my eyes. I managed to make my way to the back of the room, anchoring myself to the wall until Cynic took the stage. Their entrance was serene and they lured me away from the walls as they calmed the crowd with their meditative musings. I closed my eyes throughout the duration of their set, allowing myself to journey through their progressive zen. As they finished off their set with "Evolutionary Sleeper," I opened my eyes only to realize I was damn close to the front row.

It was time to make a quick decision; take the plunge and enter the dark waters of Meshuggah or steer my inebriated vessel back to where I had watched The Faceless, and witness Meshuggah from the safety of the “outside.” Since the very reason I was there that evening was to see Meshuggah, I decided I needed to brace myself and grabbed tightly to the barrier between myself and the stage. A moment later, Fredrik Thordendal positioned himself right in front of me with Jens Kidman just off to my right. They began to play, their music taking hold of sanity and commanding bodies into rhythmic collisions. Song after song, I fought the wave of bodies crashing into my own when suddenly I had an epiphany, the madness of the mosh pit becoming a metaphor for my life. Rather than fight the aggression, why not ride it?
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Pit Stories: "She Has A Dick!"

Each week we check in with hard rock and metal acts to get their pit stories from memorable live shows. Metal gigs may be home to intense moshing and shredding solos, but it's also a place where magic can happen and love can blossom. Of course, none of that will be happening in this week's pit stories.

Today we've got two stories of love gone wrong at metal shows from Unsu and Insain, which both signed to Kaotoxin Records earlier this year. First up is Unsu, with the following tale of a strip tease that ended up showing more than the audience was expecting:

Once there was a girl in the audience. She climbed on the stage and started to strip. She actually was a guy in fishnets, in fact. So, during the whole stong, I've played with his balls with the microphone. This actually was at the Lille WinterFest #1 in Lille and you can hear Micky screaming "Elle a une bite!," which translates in "Sha has a dick!" on the bonus live tracks of "The Filthy."

Vocalist Louis from Insain also had this story to share of missing a few not-so-subtle hints from a female fan: More...

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Pit Stories: The Pit Hates Beer

Live shows are the backbone of the local music scene, but sometimes they are also host to the drama-laden, the dangerous, and the downright bizarre. Every week we get in touch with rock and metal bands to share their most memorable stories from live shows, and this week Spider Rockets tells a tale that's less brutal than many we've had before, but covers a constant problem at gigs: spilt beer and show-goers who have had a few too many.

We were performing in Berlin, Germany and there was this guy walking on the edge of the pit with a cup of beer. Turns out he was a bit too close to the action because next thing he was on his butt and his cup flew up in the air and he was showered with whatever had been in the cup. He jumped up, all wet, and was looking to go after whoever got him, but no one was paying attention. He was so angry! Later that night, we saw the same guy peeing against the building, so he must have gotten more beer to replace his flying brew.

Spider Rockets wants to be sure that everyone is ready to get "Bitten" with its new album on June 5th. To give the fans a taste of what they can expect on its new album, Spider Rockets is offering 10,000 free downloads of the new single “Scream.” Head over to this location and download your free mp3 now. More...

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Pit Stories: On-Stage Flashdance Performance

We've been on a mission to get every band's favorite pit stories from live shows, and this week The Dogs Divine shares the following story of an unexpected on-stage dance session:

In 2008 we were doing a show in Melbourne Florida...and this girl from the crowd in a really short skirt and extremely tight top gets on stage. At first she just kinda starts dancing in one place, shaking her hips kinda thing. Well there is this large group of Military MPs that are shipping out in the next day or so to Afghanistan, so they are getting their party on before they leave, well these guys really start encouraging this chick to give them a show.

So, next thing I know, while we are in the middle of a song I might add, she starts going into this choreographed type of moves, I mean it looked like it came out of that movie Flash Dance. I mean spins and kicks and jumping and just all over the stage, from one end to the other. So much so the guitarist and I kinda had to move as far back as possible and basically hug the amps to keep out of her way and avoid a collision.

So we finish the song and it was one of those spots in the set where we just would do a four count on the high hat and go right into another song. So she stays on stage and starts this routine again. So finally we finish the second song and ask her, or rather guide her of stage.

The Dogs Divine released new album "Size of the Fight" (reviewed here) last year, and for more details on the band head over to The Dogs Divine Facebook profile.

Be sure to check back in again next Tuesday as we continue to share more mosh pit stories.

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Pit Stories: Headbutting The Giant

Every Tuesday we share metal show mosh pit stories from bands and fans coming from every genre and corner of the globe. This week we have the following story from Illinois based act DaiTribe about a giant in the pit getting a taste of his own medicine:

Pits and stage diving has changed a lot in the last 20 yrs. First pit I saw was during my time in TX. Brutal and intense circles with a lot of surfing. Back then, you'd see them ignite like they'd been waiting all their lives to unleash and explode. I'd look out from the stage and see hundreds of kids having a great night. If someone got knocked down, someone would get picked up. The mosh pits would police themselves and everyone looked out for each other in the truest sense of brotherhood.

Fast forward to today where the spirit is there, it just seems like the outcome is very different. You see these giant guys in the center knocking down people half their size. The Brazilian style pits where the circle kicks rule and seems like most people aren't paying attention. Now, I took my hits back in the day, it was gonna happen. You might catch an elbow or a fist here and there but it wasn't intentional.

So, the funniest thing I ever saw was at a show and this girl had to be about five feet and it's the middle of the set. She's thrashing and holding her own and some giant guy who's at least a foot taller, goes against the pit and she lowers her head and nails him in the gut! At first I thought she'd knocked herself out cause she flew back about 4-5 feet before the pit caught her and put her upright again. I'd been watching this guy for a couple of songs and it was clear that he was way too out of it and just trying to hurt anyone he could. Coolest thing I saw all night cause she pretty much leveled him!

DaiTribe is out now with the new album "Epochalypse A.D." and recently released a new music video for the song "I Hate Me". You can also check out a track-by-track video for "Epochalypse A.D." at this location.

Check back in again next week for another dose of pit stories from fans and metal musicians.

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Pit Stories: The Chicken Guy

Every week we continue our ongoing quest to get the best pit stories from metal shows. This week Dying Fetus checked in with us to share the following story from the Metal Alliance tour about meeting the "chicken guy" at Sonar in Baltimore:

The Metal Alliance tour came to Baltimore at a club called Sonar. The tour had been going well and the pits were killer for our set. We all come from Maryland so playing Sonar was always a show to look forward to.

When ever you play at Sonar or in the Baltimore/Washington D.C. area you see the chicken guy. I don’t know this guys name but I know his look. He wears a chicken costume to every show in the area. The chicken guy is killing it in the pit for all our shows. You cant miss the guy crowd surfing. This guy even gets applause from the crowd. Way to be chicken guy cant wait to see you again!

Dying Fetus will be releasing new album "Reign Supreme" this coming June 19th, 2012 via Relapse Records. The band will also be hitting the road throughout the entire summer, icluding an appearance at Maryland Death Fest as well as the "18 Nights of Blood Tour" in North America with label mates Revocation and Six Feet Under.

Dying Fetus will also be on a headlining tour of Europe which includes appearances at the "Copenhell Festival" in Copenhagen, "Hell Fest" in France, the "With Full Force" festival in Germany, "Sevilla Rock Festival" in Spain and the "Getaway Rock Fest" in Sweden. You can check out studio footage from the band's time recording new material, as well as find a listing of upcoming tour dates, at this location.

Be sure to check back in again next Tuesday as we share more mosh pit stories from metal bands around the world.

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Pit Stories: Reverse Sexual Harassment

Each week we chat up bands and fans from all corners of metaldom to get their favorite pit stories from live shows. This week guitarist Fack of French death grinders Infected Society shares two memories from the pit, including the following tale of reverse sexual harassment:

When we played in Finland, with some of my previous bands, the boss from our label had a ferocious argument with a guy from the audience because of of the guy’s gorgeous girlfriend. Why? Not because his girlfriend was seriously looking after the label’s boss, but because he was trying to refuse to fuck her. Her boyfriend, a colossus, was really angry someone could refuse to fuck his girlfriend. So the label’s boss had to explain that he was married, with children. But it seems it wasn’t a good excuse enough to the angry colossus, so he had to explain, again, that “no, seriously, you’re girlfriend’s absolutely sexy and beautiful, but I’m married, with children and that, despite his girlfriend’s so hot, he can’t cheat on his wife” to save his life.

Another one? Well. With one of my previous bands, which I won’t name, the singer was so drunk at a gig that we had to play the same song twice because it was on the set list and the singer wouldn’t believe we were just finished playing it, having no memories of the few previous minutes. The crowd was dead laughing, such were we! Encore fait!

Infected Society recently premiered the new song "Victims of Procreation" online, which can be heard at this location. The band will be releasing a debut MCD through Kaotoxin Records this year, and more details on the band can be found via the Infected Society Facebook profile.

Feel free to share your favorite show experiences below, and check back in again next Tuesday as we share more mosh pit stories from metal bands.

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Pit Stories: Don't Drink Before The Gig

Every week we check in with bands and fans everywhere to get their most memorable mosh pit stories from metal shows. After our last story about romance in the pit, this week guitarist Rafaël Sellekaerts of Belgian act Dehuman shares the following tale of learning a lesson about drinking before a gig:

During a nice yet stormy road trip to Oostende (Belgium coast), our guitarist, Mathias, aka “The Guilt Grinder,” had the great idea to drink a whole bottle of whiskey. It’s pointless describing how drunk he was when we entered the stage, having to play his replacement guitar because he tried (and failed) replacing a broken string on his main guitar while in the car, leaving it unusable.

If I can remember well, it obviously took him only two songs to break a string from the then only playable guitar left after we started our set due to his totally drunk stage dancing. He then handed Adrien, our roady, the guitar for he could replace the string, which literally took him three songs, during which Mathias took over the bass, leaving Andréa (bassist/singer) singing and crowdsurfing to attract the public’s attention so they couldn’t really notice how… er… intense and… er… unforgettable Dehuman was during that time.

Sure we had a good laugh during that gig and afterwise. But we had to learn a lesson from it, which we still obey as an eleventh commandment since then: be drunk, but stop drinking alcohol two hours before the gig! Stay sick and brutal motherfuckers, thanks for the support!

Dehuman will release debut album "Black Throne of All Creation" on April 30th, 2012 through Kaotoxin Records. To get a sneak peek of the album, check out the song "Cast of Assassination" by clicking here.

Check back in again next Tuesday as we continue to share more pit stories from bands across the world.

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Pit Stories: A Romantic Entanglement

Each week we track down musicians from every genre of metal to get their most memorable mosh pit stories. For this week's look at the pit, guitarist Sami Yli-Sirniö of Kreator and progressive death metal act Barren Earth shares the following story of a (brief) "romantic" entanglement:

Through the years I´ve seen lots of odd things in the pit. Usually unintentional. But it was only very recently during a Kreator show in Oslo I spotted an extremely intoxicated young couple having sex against the crowd barrier. Most of their clothes were on but the poor girl got seriously rammed to the straight-forward rhythm of the song "Pleasure to Kill." This was merely the shortened version of the song but nevertheless the guy finished before the tune was over. I had serious difficulties beginning the next song because I had to laugh so much. It was a Saturday night in Norway and everyone in the audience was so drunk that hardly anyone even noticed the happy and "romantic" incident in the pit. I bet it happens all the time.

In related band news, Kreator will be releasing the new album "Phantom Antichrist" on June 1st, 2012 (Europe) and June 5th, 2012 (North America), while Barren Earth recently dropped sophomore full-length "The Devil's Resolve" (reviewed here).

Metalunderground.com recently had the pleasure of premiering three songs online from the new Barren Earth album, and the band also dropped a music video for "The Rains Begin," which can be viewed here.

Check back in again next Tuesday to find more pit stories from metal fans and band members.

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Pit Stories: "One More Song!"

It's Tuesday again, and that means we have more mosh pit stories to share, which we collect from fans and bands across the world. For this week's story, Hopes Die Last vocalist Daniele Tofani shares the following story of an out-of-control crowd that just couldn't get enough and wasn't going to let the venue stop them from seeing a show:

There are really shitloads of stories about our concerts that are worth telling, but the first one that comes to my mind is the one happened in Poland during our last tour. That night we played in a club in Szczecin. It was a small place, but there was a good amount of people, not a lot, but it seemed promising.

After a massive booze-up it was finally our turn to get on stage. As soon as the music started, people completely freaked out and a disproportionate-size moshover was right there before my eyes. I was kind of astonished throughout the whole live set. It wasn’t just mosh, it was true violence!

The funny part was that people were even pogoing like crazy - pushing and shoving and falling on their asses - during the slow and ambient-like songs! The club was lacking in security (obviously nobody could imagine such a worrying situation) so the two old owners tried to supply that by doing what they could, but they hardly had control of the situation, and in the end the club was completely destroyed.

On the deafening-cry “One more song!” the sound guy turned off the whole soundboard and microphones, trying to persuade people to leave the club, but I clearly remember someone from the crowd jumping on the console and turning everything back on. So while the technicians and the owners were cursing and lost in the anarchist behavior, we played our last song.

We were all speechless. Fuck, something completely out of the ordinary! Those people were crazy motherfuckers, it was amazing! I won’t ever forget that night.

Hopes Die Last recently released a music video for "Keep Your Hands Off," which can be seen here. "Keep Your Hands Off" is taken from the band's "Trust No One" album.

Check back in next Tuesday as we continue to share more of best pit stories from metal bands.

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Pit Stories: Unassisted Stage Diving

Each Tuesday we share the best mosh pit stories from metal fans and band members from across the globe. This week we have another tale from Dark Empire's lead guitarist Matt Moliti about a Destruction fan with apparently alcohol related depth perception problems:

I think it was in 2005 or 2006 I saw Destruction (at the Knitting Factory in NYC) and I remember seeing this one crazy drunk guy during one of the opening bands who insisted on trying to stage dive even though no one was catching him. I though that was funny enough, but then I saw that he had climbed up onto the balcony area. The guy actually dove down into the crowd from that height, slamming into the solid concrete floor! I have no idea how that guy got up, but he did (probably all the alcohol in his system).

Dark Empire also shared a story with us about dueling guitarists in the pit, which can still be read here. The band's new album "From Refuge to Ruin" hits stores on March 27th via Nightmare Records. To get a taste of the album, check out the new song "The Crimson Portrait" at this location.

Be sure to check back in again next Tuesday for another dose of brutal mosh pit stories.

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Pit Stories: Anything To See Pantera Up Close

We've been chatting up metal fans and band members everywhere to get their best pit stories from live metal shows. This week Tony Piccoli from Detroit prog metal act Imminent Sonic Destruction shares the following tale of suffering abuse in the pit to see Pantera up close and personal:

Back when I was living in Arizona, and still in high school, I attended the Pantera/Soulfly concert at the Mesa Amphitheater. It was my first Pantera concert, and I was supremely excited. I was very much into Pantera at the time, and NOTHING was going to stop me from getting to the very front of the crowd. I literally memorized lines from their famed "home videos." I withstood the pain of being smashed into the bar of the rail at the front. I've been in many pits in my time, but this concert was special to me, and I wanted to be at the very front to witness the band in all their glory. As the pit circled behind me during the opening acts, the force that was pushing me into the top of the railing (which lined up perfectly to my chest) was growing stronger, and the pain was escalating. Using the bar, I started bracing myself, and pushing back into the crowd. This offended the big, giant Mexican dudes behind me. Oh man, they were pissed, and with that, the "fun" began.

The last of the opening bands was wrapping up, and I could feel the energy of the crowd behind me growing as the time for Pantera drew closer. The big guys behind me continued to push into me... sometimes leading with their elbows. I continued to take it, and respond with a pretty powerful push back against them, and the crowd, which continued to anger the big guys. Finally, the last opening band finished up. At this point, there was clear discontent between me and my boys, and the big guys behind me. However, since I was the one pushing back, they were most upset with me.

Fast Forward to Pantera's set. BOOM. The crowd explodes into a violent flowing ocean of humans. It was amazing, and... painful! The big guys behind me were seriously going after me. Multiple elbows to the back, a punch to my shoulder (after all, the pit was directly behind me) and finally, a direct closed fist hit to the back of my head.

I was done. "Fuck this."
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Pit Stories: Mid-Show Rescue Mission

We've been tracking down bands and fans all across the world to get their best mosh pit stories from live shows. This week lead guitarist Gizz Butt of English Dogs shares several stories from the band's early career, as well as a tale of a mid-show rescue mission caused by a collapsing floor with The Prodigy.

When the English Dogs toured the USA in 1986 our first show was at the Olympic Auditorium in LA and we were stunned to see 5 WHOLE SEPARATE CIRCLE PITS all individually operating at the same time. Now the venue was a fairly decent size, we’ve played bigger gigs but I have NEVER in 25 years seen that many mosh pits all at once. I played in The Prodigy 1996 – 2000 and I never saw that with them. 5 pits is a pretty remarkable sight.

We played a show at Fenders Ballroom in LA again back in 1986 that was again packed to such a limit with the wildest fans on earth, stage diving and slamming harder than anyone. The heat and energy in the place was outstanding. The stage divers and moshers were encouraging us perform more crazy feats on stage and were trying their utmost to wear us out in record time. English Dogs drummer PINCH was blowing everyone away and you could see the sweat pouring off him in torrents. There was no air in the place and after another breakneck paced number Pinch duly threw up all over his kit. He had to go out for air but after a couple of minutes was back in action and was carried back to the stage having drank 3 or 4 pints of water. He picked up the sticks and the madness continued.

I did witness something pretty extreme when with The Prodigy, and that was at a show in London at the Brixton academy. The Brits were going absolutely NUTS and were jumping so hard and so high the the dance floor collapsed and the first dozen rows of punkers all sank through the floor, disappearing in a cloud of dust! We had to stop while everyone was rescued and barriers were put around the massive hole and we just started again! Hah hah. They didn’t care that they’d just had the fright of their life, they just wanted more!

I’m happy to say that whenever I’ve been in the pit, I’ve always come out with all limbs intact, no broken bones, a bit of a headache and ripped clothing. I’ve lost my cell phone too but I’ve always managed to keep my pants and shoes. Unlike some people!

English Dogs is currently headlining North America with support by The Casualties, Toxic Holocaust, and Havok. Back in 1981 British punk / metal crossover band English Dogs was formed. Though initial releases were more straight-forward punk rock, the band's metal leanings appeared on the "Forward Into Battle" record, released in 1985. According to a press release, "The seminal album was a major influence on bands such as Metallica, and this year the 'Forward Into Battle' line-up of founding-member Andrew 'Pinch' Pinching (also of The Damned), Graham 'Gizz' Butt (Prodigy, The More I See) and Adie Bailey have forged to again bring that record to life for North America." More...

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