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Archive: Pit Stories Columns

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Pit Stories: How Not To Enjoy A Show - ODed

We've been talking to bands and fans everywhere to get their favorite mosh pit stories. Last week's story focused on drinking, so this week let's take it up a notch to drugs. Jason Schmidt of California metalers Graf Orlock, shares his story from a remote corner of Australia:

Orange, New South Wales, Australia, June 2010. Graf Orlock and Dangers were doing a 3 week tour of this fair former penal colony, roughly 160 miles west of Sydney with a burgeoning population of 31,000. We played a rowdy and entertaining house show there, which was of particular historical interest because it appeared NO bands from out of town had ever played there. Whilst the mid-song running and punching was in full fiasco, there appeared to be an injured kid lying in the back of the room. Not only was this kid lying down, his face was a Violet Beauregarde color blue, and small tremors seemed to take over his half naked body. The ambulance people were called, his mom arrived, and his minor drug-induced seizure was put to rest in short order. Since then this house has been christened 'Seizure's Palace' and remains a highlight of our summer (winter) abroad.

Graf Orlock's new EP, "Doombox," is out January 18, 2011 on Vitriol Records. Known for insane artwork and elaborate packaging, Graf Orlock steps it up once again with Doombox -- a 30"x10"x10" fold-out cardstock "boombox" that houses the Doombox EP on CD and vinyl, plus a bonus CD containing Graf Orlock's entire "Destination Time" trilogy. Also known for its far-flung DIY world touring, Graf Orlock has repeatedly toured Australia, Indonesia, Japan, Europe, Puerto Rico, Canada, and the US, all on its own dime.

Check out some of their music on the band's official MySpace page.

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Pit Stories: Drinking Stories and Pit Stories

We've been talking to bands and fans everywhere to get their favorite mosh pit stories. This week John Conley, lead guitarist of New York doom metal band Moth Eater, shares a couple that demonstrate how drinking stories and pit stories sometimes go hand in hand:

The ONLY thing I've ever won in life... free tickets to see Godsmack play a lunch time set for K-Rock radio at CBGB's. It was around the time of their 1st record. It was supposed to be a big deal or something. Stuttering John was the emcee... or something... I ended up going to the show with my buddy the Drunken Monkey. The band didn't start playing 'til after 1 but we were drinking as soon as they started serving. By the time they started playing there were all sorts of jackholes jumping around. I'm a bit fuzzy but I remember wearing my Skinless hoodie and throwing windmills between drinks. Good times with the Drunken Monkey for sure... and yes, Godsmack sucked.

Here's another one for a more positive experience:

I was drunk off my ass before getting to the show. Always a good way to start the night. It was Slayer at the Roseland Ballroom in NYC. I've seen Slayer so many times I forget who was opening. Might have been Meshuggah? I just don't remember. Anyhow, I was so lit that as soon as Slayer started I handed my friend my coat and went barreling to the front. I was throwing fuckers and getting thrown. By the end of the show I was spitting distance from the stage trying to get my hands on a Hanneman guitar pick. No hangover the next day but damn were my shoulders sore!

Moth Eater recently had a track featured on a free sixty-track compilation. You can also check out some of their music on their MySpace player.

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Pit Stories: The Brawl Pit

We've been talking to bands and fans everywhere to get their favorite mosh pit stories. This week Australian metal band The Red Shore's manager Roman Koester shares a story from their recent tour in the States:

So we were on the 'No Mercy Tour' in the U.S in September 2010. We got to Pennsylvania, the show was at The Smiling Moose. We were staying with this girl who kindly put us up. She seemed into it and was up the front the whole show. The room was small, but completely packed. After a few encouraging words from our vocalist Chase, fights began to break out. Within a few seconds the entire place was brawling, about 6 individual fights, noses breaking, blood everywhere! The next thing I see is this guy running at the girl whose place we were staying at. At this point she was still facing the stage, intent on focusing on the music. Just as she decided to turn around, this big guy unleashes a haymaker straight into her face. We were certain she was going to drop, but to our surprise she stood her ground and smashed the dude right back in the face and dropped in, then proceeding to kick him in the face while he was down... America's rough!

The Red Shore just recently wrapped up some dates on Despided Icon's farewell tour in Australia after releasing their latest album, "The Avarice of Man" in September. You can check out some of their music here.

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Pit Stories: More Blood!

We've been talking to bands and fans everywhere to get their favorite mosh pit stories. With all of the stories of mosh pit brutality of late, you might expect more of the same from the title, but in fact, this story from California death metal band Gravehill is not what it would appear:

This one goes back to October 31st in Dekalb, Illinois. Gravehill had flown out to Illinois to do 3 shows with our brothers in Cardiac Arrest. We had arrived late late late the night/morning before this Halloween show in Dekalb. Once the sun went down and the pabst blue ribbon started disappearing at an alarming rate, we left Aurora (where we were staying) and started our short treck over to Dekalb. When we got there, we were informed that the gig was at a rehearsal space that some local bands practiced at. "No biggie," we thought. Sometimes, those types of shows totally go off and go crazy. But once the night wore on, we became a little bummed. The first bands started playing and people were barely showing up. It was dead and the bands we really not very good. There was a mix of indie rock, bad metal and even some sort of techno/hip hop type dj guy. So we just preceeded to get drunk and make the best of it as we always do.
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Pit Stories: Everyday Mosh Pit Brutality

We've been talking to bands and fans everywhere to get their favorite mosh pit stories. Omega Crom's Johnny K seems to have a lot of stories, and this week, we're going to share a couple more from him, which simply follow the general theme of getting fucked up in the mosh pit, for whatever reason:

Slayer in 99 - I was crowd surfing and somersaulted over backward and accidently knee'd this guy in the nose, the crowd shifted and my face was directly over his face as he screamed, " FUUUCK!". As I was swept away I yelled, " Sorry". That same day I saw SlipKnot for the first time which was a rough mosh pit, I took at least five boots to the skull. It wasn't intentional just people crowd surfing and flailing limbs.

OK last story, I'm at Iron Maiden everyone is rocking out having a good time and I see that Steve Harris looks pissed. After the song he goes to Bruce and says something and Bruce points this Dude out in the audience. I guess the guy was being an asshole in some way and he starts lipping off Bruce Dickinson. Needles to say this guy got fuckin rocked hard and then security came and carried him outta there. I learned a great lesson from Iron Maiden that day, Mosh pits are great for releasing some pent up rage but if you see someone going down everyone helps them out which is the beauty of it all, Kicking ass but Not behaving like a Macho Dickweed. Good Times.

All has been quiet on the Delta, BC band's front since they completed their Summer Shred Tour and then played a homecoming show in Delta in October.

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Pit Stories: Attack of the Killer Mic

We've been talking to bands and fans everywhere to get their favorite mosh pit stories. This week J Michalski, vocalist and bassist for the Red Deer, Alberta-based death metal band Awkward Silence sends in a short pit story:

Awkward Silence was playing a show at Vern's Tavern in Calgary, AB. We were playing the song "Choke Out Your Pride." I walk up to the mic for the first line of the song when two guys collide right in front of me, barrel roll into my mic and it slams into my eye. The mic flew somewhere off stage by the sound board, and the mic stand collapsed, so I started walking over to the other mic, just to have it thrown away by the pit. That's when I felt the blood dripping from my eye. We finished the song as an instrumental, the audience started yelling something about me bleeding from the eye. I told them they were f'n crazy... Vern's erupted in applause and cheering. Metal!

You can check out some of Awkward Silence's music on the band’s MySpace page.

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Pit Stories: Sumo Wrestling Meets Drum And Bass

Every week we talk to bands from all over the world and hear some of their favourite stories from the mosh pit. This week, Dean Miller of New York hardcore veterans No Redeeming Social Value shares his story about getting into the spirit of another culture:

"Every NRSV show is a free for all fun extravaganza of ill behavior! So on our recent Japan tour, in Osaka our naked tour manager and crew Sumo wrestle other members of the other bands in the pit and they are covered in sweat and mud and bee. The matches lasted a good half hour and then NRSV played, then after our set a bachelor party free for all drum and bass party broke out. We partied until after the sun came up... then played another show!"

No Redeeming Social Value recently released a new live album entitled, "High In Holland." You can read all about it, along with a history of the band and much more, by checking out our recent interview with vocalist Dean Miller.

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Pit Stories: The Folk Metal Jig Pit

We've been talking to bands and fans everywhere to get their favorite mosh pit stories. This week Jeff Black, keyboardist for the Edmonton, Alberta-based progressive metal band Samandriel, sends in a short pit story:

I'm normally not one to mosh, but I have a memory that I am particularily fond of. When I was in Europe in summer 2008 I attended Bloodstock Open Air in the UK. Lots of folk/pagan metal bands were playing that year, such as Tyr, Moonsorrow, Eluveitie and Alestorm. During particularly bouncy segments, people in the crowd would form rings by swinging their arms over each other’s shoulders or locking elbows with one another. They would then proceed to dance, sway, or perform some sort of bastardized jig around the circle. Someone in the circle would then break out, and bum rush the person directly across from them and the mosh pit would begin. This would presumably happen when the riffs got heavier or someone got bored, whichever came first. I never heard a name for it, but I call it a "dance pit" or "jig pit." I've never seen it done in North America, and I secretly miss them. Easily the most fun I've ever had in a mosh pit.

Samandriel released “Awakening” on October 15th of this year. It’s currently available for download at CD Baby. You can check out some of their music on the band’s MySpace page.

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Pit Stories: A Lesson In Mosh Pit Styles

We've been talking to bands and fans everywhere to get their favorite mosh pit stories. This week Ben Falgoust of Goatwhore discusses small bars and "The Four Corners of the Apocalypse." (That is not a Goatwhore song title.):

Here's a transcription of that video segment:

Ben Falgoust: “We’ve had some pretty rowdy pits, you know. A recent one, we played Wisconsin and it got pretty rowdy. It wasn’t crazy…well, the pit was sort of crazy. But the people at the front seemed even more crazy and they were just throwing alcohol all night. Basically, the whole stage, it’s the stage and then monitors, it was just liquor all on it. Beer, drinks, everything. Even to, we have points where we played this place that’s up near Albany, New York, a place called Popeye’s Pub. It’s a small little place. It’s the smallest place you can imagine seeing a band. This place is small. But the show was fun. Actually, the stage was bigger than the floor space the people were on. And the back wall of that was about to give way into this yard. So at any given moment these people could have been shoved if the whole back wall fell out. But in this little tight area, it just broke out on the floor and it was so crazy cause the area was so fucking small and these people were like…It was like all the sudden you step two feet, and turned around, and someone was plowing into you. It was almost like you didn’t have time to maneuver what you wanted to do on the floor. So that was great too. And sometimes when we get a really good rowdy crowd, we do this called the Four Corners of the Apocalypse. They have this big thing called the Wall of Death where two lines come and they clash. We took it a step further and made it the four corners of the room, and everybody goes toward the center and just…it’s chaos.

Buick: I bet that makes a great noise.

Ben: Yeah, bones cracking and things like that. It’s always pretty exciting. Um, let’s see. Anything else fairly exciting? Every show is a different experience, you know? So after this I’ll think of something. I’ll say, “Oh, damn! That situation was fucking crazy.” Yeah, there’s a lot of different ones, man. We’ve played from big places to small places, but I really like the aggression of the small places because you’re locked into so much area. So when it breaks out, there’s nowhere to really go. It’s like you’re trapped, so everybody in that area is sucked into it and has to partake in it unless they just leave the room because the area is so small. But then again the big places, if the whole place is ready to roll and do something crazy and you can ignite them to go off, that’s pretty fucking intense as well. Like an entire floor.


Don't miss the show report from Goatwhore's return to New Orleans.

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Pit Stories: This One Time, In The Mosh Pit...

We've been talking to bands and fans everywhere to get their favorite mosh pit stories. This week Heath Rave of Minneapolis metal band Wolvhammer sends in a short pit story:

This one time, there was this pit. It was as at a rock and roll event showcase. I believe there were as they say in the hood, "hardcore" bands playing. This one very strong person was chasing and punching an invisible ghost. Then he hit me. I'm not invisible.

Wolvhammer released Black "Marketeers of WWIII" on Init Records earlier this year. You can check out some of their music on the band's MySpace page.

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Pit Stories: Pirates Know How To Mosh

We've been talking to bands and fans everywhere to get their favorite mosh pit stories. This week Dave Khan of Vancouver, BC-based folk metal band Scythia shares a pit story from a Canadian pirate bar:

2009, year of our lord... We took a ferry across the Straight and played a little show.

The place was called the Cambie and it was an open concept pirate bar, constructed perhaps in one of the last few centuries. It had a particular rustic charm that felt very inviting for Scythia.

We opened our set by explaining who we were and then wasted no time in kicking off into Sailor's Accolade, which was an obvious pick. The seawater in the blood of the inn's patrons began dancing as a pit immediately formed.

The pit was unrelenting for the entire course of our set. Bodies were tossed about the front of the stage. Beer was spilled all over our guitar pedals and best of yet... Our merch booth (which in hind sight was poorly positioned near the stage) was lying completely horizontal with beer, cider and other miscellaneous bar fluids forming a thick coat over every t-shirt and CD.

We finished the set and realized that this crowd threw down. They were indeed pirates and knew the spirit of a primal pit. I shook hands with some of the more dominating pit characters only to be gifted with a combination of blood, sweat and ale.

T'was a fantastic eve of destruction!

Scythia is currently touring Canada on the "Exiled Across Canada" tour. The band also released a new song "Fierce Riders of Scythia" for free on the band's bandcamp page. Check out more of their music there or their MySpace page.

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Pit Stories: Permanent Disfigurement By The Pit

We've been talking to bands and fans everywhere to get their favorite mosh pit stories. This week Corey Archuleta of Colorado melodic death metal band Allegaeon shares a story from his first pit, and one that he will never forget:

Back in the early exposure of metal, I attended my first ever metal show (bunch of crap local bands) when I was in middle school. A friend pushed my panzy ass into the pit, and got knocked into the air by some large "metal looking" guy. I fell onto my hip, and limped away. 9 months later I was in the shower and noticed my entire left leg was shifted, and causing my feet into a v shape. Went to doc, got xrays and a "how are you walking?" My growth plate slipped out of place, and my leg was growing wrong. I then got a 6inch screw put in, and they were unable to correct the damage that was done, but prevented it from getting worse. I am unable to ride a bike, because of the motion. My right leg is longer as well. I went in for a ct scan a few weeks ago, and now the screw might need to be taken out, and a fake hip might be in place for me. Metal.

What could possibly be more metal than permanent disability/disfigurement at the hands of a mosh pit? Luckily Corey's in a kick-ass metal band or that story might not be one he'd want to share with others.

Allegaeon released their debut album, "Fragments Of Form And Function," this summer and just wrapped up a short tour in August. You can hear "A Cosmic Question" here or on their MySpace player with a few others.

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Pit Stories: Set Up In A Wall Of Death

We've been talking to bands and fans everywhere to get their favorite mosh pit stories. This week we hear from German metal band Emergency Gate. Guitarist Udo shares his wall of death experience with us:

It was the last day of the Chaos over Europe Tour 2009, on which I had the honour to support Kreator, Caliban and Eluveitie with my band Emergency Gate for 2 months. This evening was a special evening so our other guitar player Vlad and me decided to join Caliban‘s wall of death for the first time. So when they started playing their third song we knew from the nights before, that it was wall of death time. We went to the very first row where the Andy, the vocalist from Caliban saw me, smiled and said: "EVERYONE AGAINST UDO."

Well, it wasn‘t as painful as expected, but Vlad and me both lost our bracelets.

Emergency Gate recently posted an exclusive trailer for their new album "The Nemesis Construct," which is due out in North America on October 5th. You can also check out their official music video for "Point Zero" here.

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Pit Stories: Brutalized In The Lamb of God Pit

We've been talking to bands and fans everywhere to get their favorite mosh pit stories. This week, Omega Crom's Johnny K recalls getting brutalized in a Lamb of God most pit:

A bunch of us were drinking in the parking lot before the [Lamb of God] show and my friend Stubbs dresses up as this wrestler called the Green Teabagger (you can find him on myspace) goes up to Chris Adler yelling, "I heard you wanted to go me! I heard you wanted to do it!" Funny shit.

So we go into the show just loaded and I'm in the mosh pit drunk and I gotta say that isn't the brightest thing I ever did. I lined up the biggest dude I saw in the vicinity and got smashed to the ground. I'm on my hands and knees and took a knee to the face at which point two random people pick me up and put me back on my feet, wow. Then they're ready to play Black Label and the crowd starts seperating for the wall of death. Randy screams, "1,2,3,4!" and everyone charges at each other like fucking Braveheart and I'm about the second row back from the frontline when we crash together. Managed to step back see just a massive pile of bodies and everyone is bailing people outta there to help the ones at the bottom of this massive doggypile, it was Fuckin Crazy.

Omega Crom just wrapped up the Summer Shred tour and recently spoke to Metalunderground.com where they revealed they're planning a Canadian run as well.

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Pit Stories: Honing Your Skills, Through Sickness

We've been talking to bands and fans everywhere to get their favorite mosh pit stories. This week, Downspirit guitarist Cédric “Cede” Dupont offers up an interesting story about what could have been one of his worst experiences ever:

Right, let me start right away with that one recap of everything: It was HOT as hell, it was sweaty, it was crazy.

Last year, 2009 that was, right when we had the line up together to hit the stages right before we were going to record “Point of Origin,” our debut album, we were playing some sort of smaller clubs, just to see if we could get the material to a sound we were looking for.

So, this weekend, I had a terrible fever, and I could hardly get my ass out of bed, but a man’s got to do what a man’s got to do right?! So, heading to the club, almost fainting already before even having had a single note played on my guitar, I started to feel kinda weird again, and thought I’d get it away by drinking some liquor (it’s the best medicine, ya know). It definetely helped…being close to start fainting even more! Haha.

Anyway, we played the show, I kinda almost fell off stage, I almost fell backward right into my rig, and the good thing was, I was so terribly fucked up, I just thought I was about to die on that small freaking stage.

But you wanna hear the best? I was watching a videotape later that week, and who knows why, but I played the best show of my life, musically. It’s unbelievable...not a single mistake!

Downspirit's debut album "Point of Origin" just got a North American release earlier this month on Metalville. The band has more tour dates planned in 2010. Check out their MySpace page for the latest tour dates ans some music. Or check out some music on the widget below:

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Pit Stories: Mosh Pit FAIL In A Snoop Dog Pit

We've been talking to bands and fans everywhere to get their favorite mosh pit stories. This week Brendan K Duff of Pristina shares one from Lollapalooza back in the day:

Over the years, I've quite literally seen it all, or pretty damn close. From simple fistfights to full blown riots. Brass knuckles, bricks, chains, padlocks, tasers, bats, beer bottles, chairs, knives and guns. Fucked up bouncers, Police brutality, Fucked up violence of all kinds, it goes on and on. I could write a book on the unbelievable shit I've seen and done. All of this pales in comparison to the DUMBEST thing I've ever experienced... and sadly, I deserved it. I wish I could say that the story takes place at some fucked up hardcore show, or at least a SLAYER gig or something... Nope, Snoop Doggy Dogg.

In 1997 I was 16 years old. That summer I was invited to go see the Lollapalooza Fest. Looking back, I have no idea why I went, because the only band I gave a shit about that played was TOOL. But alas, I went, and what happened turned out to be the dumbest thing that ever happened to me. I remember spending the afternoon scamming beer and being an idiot. The crowd was your typical "douche bag" festival audience. (You know? 10,000 white boys with tribal tattoo's who "rock out" to bands like Disturbed and Godsmack. Alright, so now that we're on the same page, we can continue.)

I was drunk, watching the mutants, when Snoop hits the stage. All of a sudden, a giant douche bag mosh pit erupts... That's right, white people moshing to Snoop Dogg. I decided it would be hilarious to enter said mosh pit and show these assholes how it's done! I took about three steps into "the pit"... and blackout. Sadly, I was not only knocked unconscious immediately, but my nose was broken and a tooth was knocked out. Even worse, the tooth was attached to a retainer that was glued to the bottom row of my teeth. So I come to, confused, bleeding out the nose with a piece of wire hanging out of my mouth with a tooth on the end. As I limped away, I had to rip the retainer out, which broke another tooth it was glued to.

To try and save face, I toughed out the rest of the show, but the night ended with me in the ER, trying to explain the story without looking like a total moron (didn't work). And that, boys and girls, is the dumbest mosh pit experience to ever happen to me.

Pristina's new album, "The Drought (ov Salt and Sorrow)" is due out September 28th on Trendkill Recordings. The albums is produced by Steve Austin of Today Is The Day, and featuring guest appearances by Steve Austin, Rennie Resmini (Starkweather), and Scott Angelacos (Bloodlet). Check out some of their music on the band's MySpace page.

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Pit Stories: The Night The Stage Wanted To Eat Us

We've been talking to bands and fans everywhere to get their favorite mosh pit stories. This week Special Ops drummer Clarence shares a story of show in an airplane hangar on a sketchy stage:

It happened in Beloeil in the spring time of 2009. We played at a party for a friend of a friend of a friend. The show was held in a huge hanger used for storing air planes. When we arrived, we realized that the stage was home made and poorly setup. We looked at each other and laughed without saying a word. It was bad. It was wobbling like crazy, the floor boards were made of different thicknesses and types of wood that had been sitting outside all winter. The stage was barely big enough to fit the four of us along with all the gear. Nails and screws were sticking out from everywhere.

When the time came for us to play, Clarence, in his normal excitement, ran up to the stage and jumped on. His foot went right through the floor board. Thankfully, he didn't hurt himself too badly. Just a minor scrape. Abe helped him back up and and the show began.

Knowing that the stage wasn't very solid, the Ops crew tried not to move around too much but the stage was doomed from the start. By the end of the set, the stage looked like a mine field. There were holes everywhere. So bad that someone had to patch some of the holes with smaller pieces of wood between some of the songs. It was a night they would all remember as "The night the stage wanted to eat us" Fun times were had by all that night. Clarence didn't sue because he was too wasted and didn't realize he had been injured until the following day.

Special Ops has a few local shows planned while bassist Waldo Thornhill is in rehabilitation from surgery from his second bout with cancer. Visit the band's MySpace page for more details.

Check back every Tuesday for more pit stories and check out Special Ops' first pit story here.

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Pit Stories: Skinhead Facial Surgery

We've been talking to bands and fans everywhere to get their favorite mosh pit stories. This week vocalist Brett Hoffman and guitarist Phil Fasciana of the legendary death metal band Malevolent Creation talk about an incident at one of their first shows involving an unbelievable oral amputation.

Pit Stories: Malevolent Creation from Emily Hingle on Vimeo.

This footage is taken from their upcoming interview. Malevolent Creation's latest album, "Invidious Dominion," will be out August 24th. They're currently on a headlining tour before meeting up with Exodus for the March of Brutality Tour. For more Malevolent Creation, check out their MySpace page.

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Pit Stories: "Don’t Do This To El Guapo"

We've been talking to bands and fans everywhere to get their favorite mosh pit stories. This week The Binary Code guitarist Jesse Zuretti sends in a short-story length submission that he even titled "Don’t Do This To El Guapo."

A wise man by the name of Bas Rutten once said, “He tried to kill me, now I gotta return the favor."

Back in May we did a quick, week-long jog of dates with a gaggle of maniacs called Gloominous Doom. What seemed sure to be a super smooth run of shows turned quickly into a giant rager by the time we hit our first night. The second date had us doing an on-air performance and interview for UMass Lowell‘s Stress Factory Radio Station before our much anticipated basement show with the_Network and Hivesmasher. The show was going down in the concrete slab beneath the house where the Hivesmasher cubs keep all of their honey. This makes only for a dangerous, loud, and uncontrollable night from what we learned very quickly. Brett, our faithful live Bass-Master 3000 (also of East of the Wall/Biclops/Day Without Dawn/Postman Syndrome/Yoko Ono/Rolling Stones/Chumbawamba notoriety) managed to score a nice boo-boo from good old Aaron Heinold of Hivesmasher, incurring the aftermath of a Hivesmasher stunt induced by a severe amount of alcohol consumption. Read with caution, in case you ever plan on going to one of these basement shows with the level of rage emanating from the bands on the bill.

We’re nearing the end of our set, which was nothing more than a pain in the ass for me, as I broke a string nearly every note I played (thanks to Joseph Spiller of System Divide/Aborted & Kevin from the_Network, I was able to switch over to his guitar, and break his strings). The rage in the air is starting to feel real heavy. Not a frustrated rage, but a rage created in cooperation by the bands and the show-goers. The made-for-pain-and-violence setup of the basement made it ever so easy for the rage-aholics to spread their wings of anger, and throw bottles and karate dance in the 10x30 space we rocked in. As we’re moving our crap out of the way for the_Network, we can feel the kids there with like-minded angst toward humanity getting pumped for the misanthropic gaggle of drunken outdoorsmen to start playing their ferocious set. Even without a bassist, these guys managed to make the concrete crumble and shake by the end of their set.

As soon as Hivesmasher pummels their way into their first song, the maniacs comprising the entire audience start raging a level higher. Broken glass covers the floor where Converse sneakers and Sauconys patter to the beat of the grind. A large man dressed in a bright orange windbreaker suit (head to toe, this guy was the sweetest deal of the night) flails his arms and legs, kicking and air chopping, sort of like a graceful asylum patient with a jar of centipedes dumped into his now pried-open straightjacket. Nevertheless, the pot's about to boil, and we're in the eye of the shit-storm.

At a show we play, 9 times out of 10, you can find Brett up front, dead center, head banging in all of his 110lb glory for every single band on the bill. As per usual, there was no deviation from the norm on this particular night - especially since Hivesmasher are long-time amigos of Brett and the East of the Wall crew. This could go both ways: it could be a “bro-down” set, where a band acknowledges the sweetness of bros getting together and being idiots, or Hivesmasher could simply acknowledge Brett’s presence by smashing a microphone into his eye socket.

I'm sitting next to our merch table in the back of the room, watching the kids near the band go ape shit, when all of a sudden Little Man Brett comes trudging over to me, half bent over, holding his hands over his right eye. When he moves his hands away from his eyes, I do the typical “Ooooo, sheeeit that looks bad” in response to the wound. The microphone Aaron decided to use to penetrate Brett’s skull with apparently managed to snag the outer right brow and cheek causing it to bleed quite a bit. Essentially, the mic did not fit into Brett’s skull through his eye socket. Now, Brett might be a tiny guy, but he proved to be anything but a pussy. He simply takes a shirt, holds it up to his face to keep the blood out of his eye, and walks right back up to the front of the “stage” area, head-banging as if nothing happened. And this was only one song in!

Aaron and the Hivesmasher dudes really made us feel like we were a part of some kind of smashing brotherhood by the end of the night. Brett opted out of getting stitches at any point during the tour (and did not get stitches any time after the tour).

The Binary Code's new EP, "Priest," will be out August 10th. They've also announced a release show for August 2nd in New York and have recently posted a new single online. For more The Binary Code music, check out their MySpace page.

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Pit Stories: The Element of Surprise

We've been talking to bands and fans everywhere to get their favorite mosh pit stories. This week Gazelle Amber Valentine of sludge metal duo Jucifer shares a few stories, mostly about what happens when the first guitar note blasts out:

Every pit has some joy, some blood... and usually a fight or two. But when you're playing guitar through upwards of a dozen cabs, some of the most entertaining pit incidents happen before the pit has even had time to get started.

Most of my favorite crowd reaction stories happened when I hit the very first chord. Because except for those occasions when something goes wrong or there's a noise ordinance, the first chord is always waaay louder than people think it's gonna be. And this leads to great moments. Like when our touring sound man watched this guy with a full pint glass trying to chat up a lady beside the sound board. And when I started to play, the dude jumped and dropped his beer. Which bounced, shattered, and splashed all over the girl. Who was not impressed with dude's game.

A house sound man from a club we've played since the mid nineties told me that he always watches to see what happens. And his favorite reaction to recount was this: a guy flat out fell over when I struck the first chord. Fell on the floor. Epic.

But if you want blood, the best Jucifer pit was probably the one which was throwing pint glasses around. Some of which ended up on the front of the stage, where they were crushed into a perfect carpet of glass shards for the most enthusiastic moshers to roll around in. I can still picture one guy perfectly. He was so covered in blood, he looked like an extra from a slasher movie. Shit did not even look real. And he kept coming back for more. Best part: we talked to him after the show, and he was sober. Now that's commitment!

Jucifer is currently touring the US and Canada. You can check out their latest tour dates here and hear some of their music on their MySpace player.

Check back every Tuesday for more pit stories!

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