Disputed Bass Odyssey win at sea
Mighty Crown had actually put two hands on the trophy for the first World Clash at Sea, a smiling selector taking it up from where it was placed in front of the battling sound systems after winning a tune-for-tune round over Metromedia and Bass Odyssey.
At that point it was all smiles in the contest, for which Metromedia's Sky Juice said they were unprepared as he did not know it was a clash and Bass Odyssey came out firing on all cylinders.
However, Mighty Crown's grins soon turned to grimaces and many people in an audience which was engaged with the clash, booed and protested strongly as Mighty Crown was judged to have forfeited and the clash awarded to Bass Odyssey.
Mighty Crown at that point took a hands off attitude to the trophy, one selector gesturing dismissively towards it with both hands, indicating that they no longer wanted it.
At the heart of the dissatisfaction was the structure of a tiebreaker, after Bass Odyssey and Mighty Crown had ended on two points each and Metromedia one from five rounds of dub-for-dub.
It was announced that there would be three tunes from three sounds to settle the matter and Mighty Crown, for who Simon and Sammy T alternated on microphone duties throughout the clash, had a glorious moment with an Alton Ellis special Let Them Try. Metromedia did not play and Bass Odyssey, with Worm on the microphone, went for a dub of Yellowman's Zungu Zeng.
The crowd, which was the sole judge of the clash with Dubmaster Chris responsible for counting hands and announcing the result, gave the round to Mighty Crown decisively.
However, the host asked them to hold on as each sound was actually required to play three songs each to break the tie, not one. Mighty Crown was upset. "Me good, you can play for the rest of the night," the lead selector said.
Members of the audience who were left after the much bigger crowd had watched Damian 'Jr Gong' Marley's concert closing performance, were angry. Along with the boos and shouts of 'no' were a few shouts for the MC to come off the stage.
Still, Dubmaster Chris held his ground. "We agreed on three, you refuse to play the three, you forfeit, Bass Odyssey is the winner," he said. The trophy could change hands very soon though, as the three sound systems meet again on December 8, during the second leg of the 2015 Welcome to Jamrock Reggae Cruise, which begins today.
Earlier in the clash Bass Odyssey could have also had grounds for protest in round two of the tune-for-tune, when Mighty Crown played a Bob Andy and Marcia Griffiths dub, Metromedia went for Jr Gong's Soundman World and Bass Odyssey had Beres Hammond asking "what can you do to stop your sound from dying?" The count was close, with many people at the front raising their hands for Mighty Crown, but those mainly on the sides, at the back and on the balcony giving it to Bass Odyssey.
It was that round which sent Mighty Crown into a commanding two-nil lead, after they won the first round with a thunderous Freddie McGregor Big Ship dub tailor-made for the occasion.
The dub proclaimed; "Sky Juice you dead inna de ocean" and also had a special word for Bass Odyssey.
Bass Odyssey clawed one back in round three with a dub of Garnet Silk's Oh Me, Oh My and Metromedia also went for Silk to finally have some success on round four.
In round five, before the tiebreaker, Bass Odyssey drew level with Mighty Crown through an Admiral Tibet dub which cautioned its rivals "you are playing with a serious sound."Strangely, the 10-minute rounds did not decide who went into the tune-for-tune, although the MC asked after each who was leading the dance. Mighty Crown had a strong first round and Bass Odyssey made its mark in the second, but Metromedia had a hard time with technical issues, with no sound and having to change consoles in the first and a low microphone at one point in the second, prompting an upset Sky Juice to claim sabotage.