For every metalhead, their first concert is a special experience. You get to see the band you love live in the flesh, as well as hang out with like-minded people and enjoy the whole concert experience.
But that first concert can also be a bit daunting, especially if you've heard horror stories about headbanging injuries or being crushed to death in the pit, not knowing what to wear or bring to a concert. However, its definitely not as bad as all that!
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Here at RebelsMarket, we've compiled this metal concert guide to help you survive your first mosh pit experience:
What to wear
At a metal concert, the key consideration is comfort. You want concert clothing that's sturdy and won't object to a little blood, sweat, and beer. Lace, fishnet, boots, and skirts, in general, don't mix well with the mosh pit.
Every decent concert outfit begins with the choice of a metal band t-shirt. There used to be an unspoken rule that you could not wear the band's own t-shirt to their concert. However, in recent years this seems to have been phased out, and it's more socially acceptable (if not a little fanboyish) to wear the band's t-shirt to their show.
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Skull inspired fashion is an amazing alternative to band shirts, as it shows your passion to the dark side. Otherwise, choose a graphic t-shirt in a genre that resembles the band you're going to see. Any black t-shirt, dress, top with a wicked design on front and back will suffice. Pair your chosen top with jeans, cargo pants or shorts, sturdy boots, and a leather belt, and you have everything you need to a metal night out.
Don't forget your ticket, wallet, cellphone and cash for merchandise and beer. For ladies, carry as little as possible, and choose a studded or skull handbag with a secure shoulder strap. Make sure to stick to the rock theme by having studs, spikes, and skulls on any other accessories.
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Who to bring
The best person to bring along to your first metal concert is a friend who's into the band and has been to concerts before. Although going on your own is great, your first concert will be more fun if you can share it with someone who's into the music too.
The worst people to bring along to metal concerts are friends who aren't into metal, and your mum. Unless your mother is a metalhead, in which case, that's cool.
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What to expect
At metal shows, there are usually three distinct areas – the front rows, which contain hardcore fans. People up here are so tightly pressed it's actually impossible to move. Behind these rows is the moshpit – this is where people are slam moshed, create circle pits, walls of death, and generally being silly. Further back from the moshers is the majority of the crowd.
Most metalheads like to stake out a spot for themselves that offers a decent view of the stage, is not too far from the bar, offers a sufficient personal territorial bubble and enough room to headbang.
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You choose which area you'd like to stand in depending on the type of concert experience you want to have. Being right up the front, right on the bar, is incredible. You're so close to the band you can practically touch them. But it's hard work to get the front spot, and even harder to stay there. I usually only attempt this for my absolute favorite bands of all time.
The mosh pit is for people who like to jump around and slam into people in order to have a good time. It's good fun, but you need to look after your fellow metalheads and obey basic mosh-pit etiquette:
- Don't drag people into the pit unless they want to be there.
- If you see someone fall over, help them up.
- Don't crowd surf more than once in a night. It gets really annoying having to hold you up when we're trying to watch the show.
- There is no "save my spot" in the pit.
- If you are a girl and someone is groping you inappropriately, you are allowed to elbow them. Otherwise, leave elbowing for punk shows.
Basically – don't be a dick, and you'll be fine.
If you're not too fussed on any of this, just choose a good spot. My favorite spot is right in front of the sound desk. Wherever the sound engineer is located will be the best sound in the venue.
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Metal concerts are basically the most fun you can have listening to music, so relax and enjoy yourself. Although the music is loud, angry and aggressive, metalheads are generally nice, calm and caring people, and they'll look after you. So put your hands up and get ready to headbang!!
Have a blast, and keep it metal!! \m/
Here is a compilation of awesome heavy metal concerts of all time to get you in the groove.
Do you have any tips for those new to the concert scene? Leave your feedback in the comments below!