Rules Of The Mosh Pit
It’s probably only as kids that we aren’t completely disgusted by the prospect of being pressed up against another sweaty human being to the point where your face finds a perfect groove inside someone else’s armpit. As kids we understood the unspoken rules of the mosh pit, and we lived one day to the next, till we were back in it again.
On the inside there was this atmosphere of camaraderie and it was simply understood that everyone was there to have a good time. For 40 minutes while the band played, those people around you were just like your brothers and sisters so you picked them up when they fell down. When someone signaled to you that they couldn’t breathe and the crowd was just too much to handle, you kicked into survival mode, regardless of whether you knew them or not because there was only one way out and it was up.
Whether you were crowd surfing to safety or just for the thrill of it, as kids we found beauty in the curving and contortion of a body being raised above our heads by unassuming hands. And, when the guy in front of you plummeted you in the side of the head, you didn’t mind because he didn’t mean it.
Hacking it out in a mosh pit was about being in love with rock and roll and falling in love to it. Seeing your band perform the song that you found yourself in for the first time, that does something to your body. There is nothing like being inside a crowd 1000 people deep right before the chorus comes in; the anticipation that builds in that moment is the finest kind of high there is.
It starts in your gut and just rises and rises. Then all of a sudden there’s a pause – knees bend and there you are hovering an inch above the concrete and it just happens, it comes crashing in. Toes hit the ground and ground rattles; it’s chaos, it’s everywhere, and it’s so beautiful.
It was the sharing it with the people around you part that was really something special. When the room went black and you were just somewhere in the middle of it all, you’d see that mic go up in the air and you instinctively knew how to respond to it. Everyone took a deep breath and just belted it out, top of their lungs.
In those moments – because that’s what they really were – we’d just hang there, together, feeling alive. There was this pure, pulsating, human electricity that radiated from one person to the next and as kid’s we’d stand there with our arms outstretched and our faces to the ceiling, just hoping we could bottle the feeling forever.
There are likely zero moments in a person’s life when they will ever feel as if 400 other people have their back – that is except if they’ve ever found their way in a mosh pit. The thing was, we knew going in that we might get hurt – it was a very real possibility – but it was, and for many of us will remain, one of the only places on earth that we’d ever willingly take a beating. The blood and sweat, it still equals war scars in our books – real badges of honor for the band’s we grew up and out of.