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Is Crowd Surfing Back?

In the past couple of weeks, I’ve noticed something—I think crowd surfing is back in a big way. I, like most of you, remember crowd surfing as a relic of the ’90s, along with wallet chains and Courtney Love’s original nose. But it’s been years since I saw anyone crowd surf at a show. Then, two weeks ago, I went to see We Are Scientists in New York City. Midway through the show, a lone crowd surfer went up and sailed a good 8 feet before he was dropped back to the ground by his fellow concert-goers. A few days later, the Siren Festival at Coney Island became a crowd surfers’ paradise, as at least 15 different people ascended on the hands of others throughout the day, usually on repeat. Even Kim Schifino of Matt & Kim caught the crowd-surfing bug and attempted to do it vertically. Then last night, at a Smashing Pumpkins show (which is admittedly a ’90s throwback in itself), guess what happened? Yep. Crowd-surfing. I have mixed feelings about this. On the pro side, it’s fun to watch, makes a crowd feel more connected, and I’m sure makes a band feel good. But on the downside, it turns dancing to a band you love into a contact sport. In other words, it’s all fun and games until someone pokes an eye out or breaks an arm. (At Siren, I was standing near a crowd surfer who managed to kick me in the shin on his way up. I have a lovely bruise to show for it.) Overall, I guess this can happen. But let’s draw the lines at mosh pits, mkay? Cause that was just stupid to begin with.

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