To those who were shocked to see me in the outside ring of a mosh pit, I do admit that my look is more ‘unassuming mom’ but those who know me well, know that I grew up in mosh pits and my favorite memories of shows usually involve insane moments of possible injury; so when my friend and coworker told me his show was probably going to be too brutal to get good photos safely… I was in! Not to mention, the venue is one I’ve heard of a good bit, but I’d never actually gone to, Porky’s. What I witnessed there was an intense night of metal. and I have the photos to prove it.
First off, this venue is pretty great. The large meat smoker outside made me highly regret having eaten before the show. Is it huge? No, but it’s about what to expect from a Pittsburgh metal venue. Parking too, so if you check them out for a show, get there early and you should be fine. It’s located a little off the beaten path but close enough to major highways that it’s easy for even out of towners to reach and their food and drink selections make it more than just a venue. The stage area is in the back and while I can’t vouch for most nights, this night it was jam packed with a crowd more than ready for some action! I heard someone say this was going to be a metal night and I was not disappointed.
Starting the night was Death Ticket, a Thrash Metal Band from the Pittsburgh area, that came out with full steam ahead energy. No warming up to the end for this band, they threw everyone into the fire. Fast, loud, and some killer mixes of rock and metal vibrated through the venue to the delight of many metalheads. Then we had Razorblade, a more grind core-ish, thrash metal punk element of the scene. Looking over their socials I see them describing themselves as “Fast, dirty, to the point” and I agree. Next was Negative Thirteen, a band whose vocalist had come out to introduce himself at our recent First Angel show, so I was happy to get the opportunity to re
turn the support. Now this is when things started getting wild. “Punk infested stoner sludge doom core” sets the scene. I could hear all of these things at various times, vocals on point for this type of band, the bassist couldn’t quit smiling, and the moshing had now begun full swing. Last, but certainly not least, was Ironside, Pittsburgh’s hardcore with some history. Several of these guys are ex Gutrench members and when a band begins with The Rules of The Pit, you know you need to plant those feet and be ready to flex because it’s about to go down. (Moment of big thanks to the vocalist of Leprosy for keeping me safe as best he could, lol!)
Finding the best words to explain the explosion of sound, growls, guitars, and the crowd for the remainder of the night is a little beyond my abilities other than
to make sure there’s photos included to give you an idea. In this case pictures really do say a thousand words. The room seemed to hold twice as many people as it should, the vocalist and guitarist ended up somewhere in the crowd at various times, the pit raged on, and the madness was peak happiness for any metalhead. By the time I broke away from the pit and found my way outdoors, people were screaming in harmony, an ex bandmate had done guest vocals, their new vocalist had shown his worth, and the other members of the band showed just what they were made of. If you’re wondering, it’s solid metal. The party raged on and I listed from the balcony, with the occasional patron of music coming outside to get a breath of fresh air and duck back into the mass of bodies. There are nights that are good, and nights I can write about for literally pages, but sometimes it’s the nights I can’t quite put into words that mean the most. The nights we walk away feeling like brothers and sisters, having experienced something more than just music, more like an expression of the soul. Four bands, each in various styles, each equally bringing the fire in their veins to the crowd, the night growing heavier, louder, more intense, and the afterglow of it all, it’s just a little too much to explain here…. so I brought evidence.