I know there are a lot of Metalheads on T-Nation and I can imagine that, between all the members here, pretty much every metal band has been seen live.
I’ve worked concert security before and mosh pits can be odd phenomena. Some REALLY heavy bands have surprisingly dull mosh pits, whereas some bands you would never classify as heavy have insane ones.
So lets hear some stories.
Although I’m “retired” I’ve probably been in over 150+ mosh pits. Some particularly violent ones were Pantera (no surprise), Life of Agony (no surprise) and Live (MANY people are surprised to hear this! Pretty tame band)
The winner though…EASILY…was Clutch. Clutch is a highly underrated band IMO, who make really cool rock and roll/groove/stoner/bluesy type music. Not a particularly heavy, angst-ridden band. However, their mosh pit was at times, without exaggeration, a street-fight. People punching each other in the face, stomping on heads, etc. Absolutely ridiculous.
These weren’t isolated incidents either; it seemed to be generally accepted that if you went into the pit, you might get beaten. I came out relatively unscathed (someone punched me in the ass for some reason) but people were spitting out blood/teeth/etc. Not an especially enjoyable concert experience