Monday, March 28, 2011

Agalloch concert and Rules of the Metal Moshpit

So this past Friday (March 25th) I headed to London Ontario to see the American folk/black/doom/whatever metal band Agalloch.
Summary: Fucking Great Show
 concert 1/20 from 1001 days project.
Openers:
Musk Ox:
Acoustic neofolk musician from somewhere in Ontario (can't remember where he said). His music was beautiful and haunting. Reminded me a lot of Empyrium or some of Ulver's acoustic stuff. I thought it was a great way to start off the night. Great to have Don Anderson from Agalloch to come out and do a song with him. Kinda wish I had bought a cd from him now. 

Worm Ouroborus
I'm not exactly sure what genre these guys were, I think they said psychedelic doom metal or something like that. They were interesting, the type of band I didn't exactly like but I didn't dislike them either. It would probably be nice music to have on in the background while reading or studying or trying to fall asleep but not exactly something I want at a live show. I was focusing more on how much I wanted to sit down because my back was hurting than focusing on the band. The heavier parts of their music sounded better. I might check out their stuff for background music.


The Main Event: Agalloch
Fantastic. As my friend Brad said: they played a couple songs live better than on the album. When do you ever hear that? They played super tight and everything from them were awesome. They were super nice and hung around with the fans for ages after the show, signing stuff and chatting. A lot of bands run right off the stage and it's a matter of luck and chance whether you get to meet them but these guys made it a priority to hang around until most people had left.
The Crowd:
They made the crowd go crazy- actually the audience was the only bad part of the show. I really don't know what was up with people and I'm pretty sure a couple of the guys in the pit were high as fuck on something. I personally didn't even expect a mosh pit. I expected a lot of headbanging and cheering and all that carry-on but not an actual mosh pit.
A couple of the main characters of the pit:
1) blue shirt guy: One of two guys who I'm not even sure likes metal, he certainly did not look like a metalhead nor look like he knew how to act in a mosh pit. He also must have been very fucked up on some sort of drug because he was not natural. It got to the point where whenever he was near me I has punching/elbowing/pushing him as hard as possible- and I was not the only one, and he seemed impervious to it all. He also seemed to be doing something close to a hardcore dance type thing too. He was just fucked up and pissing off most of the people around who noticed him.
2) Leather jacket guy: another guy I'm pretty sure was fucked on something. He definitely was a metalhead and he knew the general rules of the pit. Other than the fact I don't think Agalloch is much of a moshpit show, his behaviour in the pit was fine. Any other heavier more crazy show he would have fit right the fuck in. The thing about him that was most annoying was he and his friends kept trying to get him up to crowd surf. Major problems there fucktard. Firstly there was no where near enough people. As the name 'crowd surfing' might suggest you need there to be a crowd to surf upon, not 2 rows of people in front of you. Also there wasn't a barricade, there was people against the stage. The problem there is that even if you get someone up onto the crowd there's no where to go other than on to the stage. This is highly annoying for the band as it often causes people to knock over important equipment, get in their way, or generally piss of the band by making stupid faces and poses beside them on stage. Over than lying on the stage between the crowd and the monitor this guy didn't actually get up there- why? because two of the band members pushed him off the stage with their feet. Yes you were literally kicked off stage by the band and verbally told by them to not do that so DON'T DO IT AGAIN. Oh, not to mention the 2+ failed attempts where his friends dropped him....HA.
I eventually got to the front of the stage where it's actually much safer than a row back because while you have people crashing into your band you are a lot less likely to go flying. He was behind me for most of the time I was up there and every time I turned around his eyes were closed and he was swaying around/ leaning on me. That's the main reason I thought he was fucked up. His friend wearing a Drudkh shirt was kinda hot but a bit of a douchenozzle in terms of behaviour but again he would have been fine at a bigger/crazier show.
 3) greek guy? This was a short fat balding middle aged potentially Greek man. Maybe Italian? I dunno, he just looked like the stereotypical little fat balding Greek man wearing a white wife beater and a sweater zipped super low exposing nasty chest hair. This was the other guy that I'm not sure was a metalhead.He was an angry mosher and had the bad habit of pulling people into the pit with him. He dragged me back and through the pit once which I was not happy about but meh, I wouldn't be at the front if  couldn't handle a little bit of pushing.


 Rules of the Metal mosh pit
It's really hard to explain what appropriate mosh pit behaviour is because to an outsider it looks like violent chaos anyways, but actually it's not.

 Don't be a douchebag. You don't actually punch and kick anyone. You are not in a fight. It's more like the concentrated act of letting go and running into other people who are running into you. If you do elbow or hit someone, expect to be hit back. Regardless if it is a circle pit or a moshing pit you flow with the energy of the people around you and that coming from the stage. If someone falls in the pit you immediately try and get them up as soon as possible.You don't just take a running start and jump into people that are not in the pit. You don't actually start fights with people who are not in the moshpit. You don't drag unsuspecting people into the mosh pit. Don't go into the pit or pit area unless you don't mind being pushed around. People along the rim of the pit should push the people who fly out of the pit back in. Try to avoid wearing overly spiky bracelets of shoulder spikes that can gouge eyes out. Men: don't grope girls. Women: don't expect guys to go easy on you (though I find they sometimes do).

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