Paul Parillo Mosh Pit Comradery

Blood, bruising, sweat, a wretched stench – no this isn’t another late night at Chuck E. Cheese’s – this is the inevitable result of being in a mosh pit. Whether you’re an experienced human basher or a meek and innocent beginner, the “pit” is where boys are turned into men, girls into women (and for the right price) men into women. Even with all the terrible pain inflicted upon yourself and others, there’s one reason why you’ll find a pit at nearly every rock related concert – it’s fun.

How can one argue the most abased human behavior as it’s triggered and utilized in an organized public setting? I feel it’s not even necessary to submit the therapeutic quality of bashing out your anger whilst receiving it from someone else – everyone knows how good it feels to yell at the top of their lungs when every other outlet has been severed. With the energy of live music in your ears, the vicious pummeling of the people around you carries with it the ultimate stress reliever. Not to mention by the end of the concert (and for days onward) your body feels like a sore piece of rubber (now that’s hard work even Richard Simmons could be proud of).

It’s understandably unnerving when one looks into the pit – as any such hesitation would be apparent when staring at a blatantly obvious mess of limbs and energy. There’s been many times I’ve watched a circle pit beginning (the kind of pit that works like a cyclone, bringing more and more people in as the circumference gets larger and larger) all the while hoping it doesn’t get to me. Once you’re in, though, you become part of something with a common goal – and it’s almost as if every individual within it has a say in how passionate and vicious it becomes.

Of course, safety is a point brought up constantly by most pit dissenters – and rightfully so; on the surface, it looks deadly. Remember when I mentioned the common goal? Well, that applies here. Believe it or not, most people’s goals within the pit are not to knock someone down and stomp on their skull; they’re interests lie in bashing around to the music being played. When someone hits the ground, that now becomes an obstacle and in turn, ruins the rhythm and flow of what’s supposed to take place. In any mosh pit, you will always see people stopping what they’re doing the second someone falls to the ground. They’ll help them up, ensure they’re okay, and move on bashing around until it happens again. There are exceptions, naturally, but from my experience, the results are never in favour of the guy/girl who tries to inflict serious injury on someone. It’s as if there’s an unspoken respect and honour when it comes to the pi

It’s not judgmental, it holds no opinions on race or sex – the pit exists to physicalize the emotional experience of music. And without it, people would be left standing awkwardly bopping their head to a song worth much more than that. As long as the code is kept, mosh pits will remain, like the bruises on our bodies.

Add new comment

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
By submitting this form, you accept the Mollom privacy policy.