“Just Press Play”: A Reggaeton fan leaves disappointed

 Nina Sky Slideshow

After weeks of rumors, speculation, and anticipation, on Saturday, April 29, Student Government Inc.’s “Just Press Play” concert went off, with a few hitches.

With a full line up including the All American Rejects, The Roots, Nina Sky, Noztra, DJ Neil Armstrong, and comedian/emcee Shang, on paper this concert looked like it could not disappoint.

Shang was a great co-host for the concert, keeping the audience on their toes, while poking fun at them at the same time. While DJ Neil Armstrong was great, one can only take the mixing of back to back tracks in small doses if he or she is not in a dance club setting.

After Joe Rockstar and over an hour of antics from Shang, DJ Zeke and DJ Neil Armstrong, up and coming hip hop artist Rhymefest took the stage, and while his talent was evident, his appeal is still limited. For the most part, the bulk of his work, at least in New York City, is unknown by the majority of the public. 

Afterwards, Reggaeton artist Noztra came onstage with a small entourage and, unfortunately, his performance was forgettable. While he diversified the musical flavors of the concert, his performance seemed stale, sloppy, and unintelligible over the blaring bass of the speaker. Many of his songs seem like they would have been hot tracks-.last summer.

The most disappointing performance came from Nina Sky. While their talent is obvious, those who do not have their first album are not aware of their true vocal capabilities and overall excellent songs from their debut album.

They performed maybe three songs from their self-titled album, while the rest of their performance consisted of singing the hooks from the songs that they collaborated on with other artists, and asking a thousand times, “Do the ladies run this mother for ya?”

For the umpteenth time Nina Sky, it was clear that the ladies ran it.

After some more DJ Neil Armstrong, and Shang, The Roots took the stage for an utterly spectacular performance.

The Roots are a fantastic live act, with a drummer (?uestlove), bass player (Hub), guitarist (Kirk), keyboardist (Kamal) and Rapper/front man (Blackthought). Their set was an hour long and was well played.  It left many wanting more with some stating they would have gladly paid twice as much for the concert after witnessing their excellent performance. Their ability to perform many of their hits with an added vitality to the songs elevated The Roots above the other acts, who merely performed live versions of their singles. 

The old-school hip hop medley at the end, which included LL Cool J’s “I Need Love” and Salt-N-Pepa’s “Push It” was the icing on the cake, as it reminded many of the great days of old school hip hop.

The last act was the headliners, The All American Rejects, who also gave a great performance, albeit twenty minutes long due to technical sound problems and contractual obligations. The Rejects performed well, the energy was high, and the audience was really into the music, which above all else is most important.

Although their song catalog is not as vast as The Roots, The Rejects still did themselves justice with fast paced and guitar laced tracks as they threw multiple guitar picks into the audience mid-way into songs. The Rejects knew who they were playing to and did a heck of a good job pleasing them.