UPC to ‘Rollout’ Red Carpet For Ludacris

By Garth Brody

Do you enjoy live music in widely accessible styles? If yes, then get your sweet keister down to the Mullins Center this Sunday for the UPC’s annual Spring Concert.

Headlining the event is the one and only Ludacris. Luda is an MC who needs no introduction. We all know the words to “Rollout,” “Move Bitch” and of course “Act a Fool” from 2001’s “2 Fast 2 Furious” (in which he co-starred as Tej).

We have all at some point claimed to have hoes in different area codes, and though we’ve all respected him for quite some time, we all finally (collectively) admitted it after his appearance in the 2004 Best Picture Oscar-winner, “Crash.”

From his 2000 major label debut, “Back for the First Time,” to last month’s “Battle of the Sexes,” Ludacris has sold over 24 million records worldwide. His success has been fueled by agile lyricism, a zany sense of humor and an infectious stage presence that very possibly generated his moniker. All this and doubtlessly a few other surprises are in store for Sunday’s concert-goers.

Also on the bill, New Found Glory are the only ones holding the banner high for all the UMass rockers. Their pop-punk style blends dynamic hooks and an aggressive aesthetic, sometimes tossing in a hardcore breakdown to contrast with vocalist Jordan Pundik’s double-time, Disney melodies.

They are currently touring for the tenth anniversary of their breakthrough self-titled album, but New Found Glory is certainly not resting on their laurels. Last year they released “Not Without a Fight” to generally positive reviews.

LMFAO, comprised of Redfoo (Stefan Gordy) and Sky Blu (Skyler Gordy), are best known (depending on the source of your pop culture exposure) for either their debut single “I’m In Miami Bitch” or for “Get Crazy,” the opening theme to “Jersey Shore.” Their synth-powered party jams will surely get you completely crunk and/or hyphy.

Electrolightz follow in LMFAO’s neon footsteps, listing them among their influences. The LA-based group rounds out their club sound with singer Rami Dearest and rapper Namebrand, along with their producer erOc and live drummer Kash.

C-Banga, who won the UPC’s Battle of the Bands earlier this year, has earned his spot at the Spring Concert through trial by fire. His victory lap Sunday night will sound somewhere between Kanye and Chris Brown, with massive R&B force courtesy of his backup band – the Bang Boys.

Though the foremost musical advancement made by any of Sunday’s performers is Luda’s popularization of the fully articulated “r” sound (as in “Ursher”), the concert is guaranteed to be a blast. Ludacris and New Found Glory are venerable veterans, LMFAO and Electrolightz are bringing the strobe-light anthems, and C-Banga is your hometown hero, though he hails from Springfield. Get off your high horse and go see this show. The Spring Concert is this Sunday, April 21 at the Mullins Center. Tickets are free for UMass students, $15 for five-college students, and $35 general admission. Rollout, UMass. Rollout.

Garth Brody can be reached at [email protected]