LA Rising

The photo above might give you a sense of the energy at the L.A. Coliseum on Saturday night, where Rage Against the Machine regrouped for a massive closing slot during L.A. Rising, the band's first festival. The band capped off a day of music that ranged from hard punk to art rock to classic hip hop to many combinations thereof.

The Rage-curated bill featured British trio Muse, Chicago aggro-punk band Rise Against, Lauryn Hill, Immortal Technique and Monterrey, Mexico's El Gran Silencio. The nine hour festival was the biggest music event held at the city-owned Coliseum since last summers Electric Daisy Carnival electronic music festival, and there was a heavy security and police presence throughout the venue. But the evening seemed to go without a hitch -- that is, unless you happened to be in one of the many mosh pits that broke out during both Rise Against and Rage Against: they popped open in the crowd like vortexes in a rising tide -- these big holes on the pitch. Were you swirling in a pit, the evening may have been a bit more complicated.

You can see some of the mosh pits in the photo above -- but at the show's peak I counted 18 different ones going at the same time. At the center of one of the most active, fans built a firepit using toilet paper and scraps. It burned high for a few songs.

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