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Review: Kendrick Lamar, Steve Aoki inspire Columbus crowd to go wild to two distinct sounds

Tim Kubick / For The Lantern

If there was ever any doubt that Ohio State students knew how to have a good time, it was squashed Thursday night at the LC Pavilion. Rapper Kendrick Lamar and electro house musician Steve Aoki highlighted Karmaloop’s Verge Campus Spring Tour 2013.
The crowd’s intensity was at an all-time high on a night that included stage dives, cakes to the face and water splashing all over the place.
“I’ve never seen anything like this in my life. It’s probably one of the best concerts I’ve ever been to,” said Todd Babione, a first-year in business.
The energy in the building was already set after an opening act by R&B band Bad Rabbits. The crowd was a little restless, but frontman Fredua Boakye used his time on stage to help the crowd get hyped with his loud screams and eccentric dances.
Some fans were excited to see Kendrick Lamar’s performance because they believe he is bringing lyricism back to the hip-hop genre.
“He’s a real lyricist. He reminds me a lot of Nas,” said Maurice Nieto, a second-year in mechanical engineering. “I really liked Nas back in the day and that’s what’s got me still listening to (Kendrick).”
Kendrick Lamar definitely catered to his long-time fans. The rapper began his show with songs from previous mixtapes “Section.80” and “Overly Dedicated.” Songs like “Hol’ Up” and “P&P” started the show off and let everyone know it was going to be a special night.
The crowd morphed into a mosh pit as the rapper began performing his debut album “Good Kid, M.A.A.D. City.” Lamar must have seen the wild atmosphere in the crowd because he pointed to some people that looked like they were not having a wonderful time being pushed around.
“Are you sure you want to turn up? Because if you’re not, it might kill your vibe,” Lamar said.
This statement calmed the crowd down and had everyone rocking back and forth to the song “B—-, Don’t Kill My Vibe.” Lamar performed all of the crowd pleasers such as popular single “Swimming Pools” and then ended his set with a special rendition of the track “Cut You Off.”
After leaving the stage, repeated chants of “Kendrick” filled the air and the budding superstar came out for an encore and a special surprise for three lucky fans. Lamar said he was impressed all night with the front row’s knowledge of all his lyrics, old and new. The rapper chose three fans from the front row to get on stage and go crazy to his song “Cartoon & Cereal” and then he took the three fans backstage after the music went off and the crowd became subdued.
However, the night was far from over. After Lamar’s crowd filed out of the building, the LC Pavilion became seemingly even more packed for Steve Aoki’s loud and rambunctious electro music performance. For about an hour straight, Aoki blasted loud electro beats and began to get the crowd involved in some of the most unimaginable ways. The musician started by tossing bottles of water into the crowd, which eventually went flying everywhere. He then proceeded to toss two huge birthday cakes right into the face of crowd members.
“Steve Aoki was a lot cooler than I thought. Everyone was going crazy, jumping up and down,” said Sean Blazic, a third-year in marketing.
The crowd was so into the act that it prompted Kendrick Lamar’s DJ, Derek “MixedByAli” Ali to join in the fun. Ali is pretty large man, but that didn’t stop him from jumping on a big air float and going into the crowd. He must have been way too heavy to carry because he fell off the float and right into someone’s lap. Thankfully, no one was hurt.
The atmosphere for the spring concert was incredible for the two distinct sounds being performed.
The concert was presented by the Ohio Union Activities Board and BuckeyeThon

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