Tony Matterhorn defends clash victory
Following talks of the competition being rigged in favour of the Jamaicans, winner of the Reggae Sumfest Heavyweight Sound Clash, Tony Matterhorn, feels he had to overcome great odds en route to his victory.
Jamaica's Tony Matterhorn won the title and $500,000 at Thursday night's event held at Pier 1 in Montego Bay, St James.
The competition involved Warrior Sound of Germany; No Limit from Clarendon; Yard Beat from Japan; and the New York-based Sound Supreme, which is owned and operated by Jamaicans.
However, the selectors from Yard Beat, the Japanese sound, felt they were cheated out of the title and lashed out at the judges.
"A wah dis? A joke dis," Desem Yard Beat told THE STAR after his sound lost the clash. "Judges know who dem wah win. Me come from far island and dis a joke. A bias thing. Is not a money thing for me. This my passion."
However, Tony Matterhorn said he played by the rules and nearly got shafted.
"The competition was rigged in favour of them because by right, the German sound shoulda get eliminated long time because him play the Tarrus Riley (Don't Come Back dub) and everybody did hear the bad word inna it," he said.
Among the stringent rules is that songs should contain no profanity.
"The Japanese sound they came and complained about the Assassin song that I played because they were eliminated for the song that they played that was not from the 90s. They study our culture, but don't study it 100 per cent because that song they were complaining about was a song I cut from 97/98," he said.
The first round was 10 minutes of juggling by each sound which introduced them to the audience.
The second round was a challenge round with each sound having to play their five best 90s collaborations, on dub or 45.
Yard Beat was originally eliminated but reinstated in round three. Round three saw the sounds being grouped, with Warrior Sound and No Limit being tasked with playing their five best Buju Banton songs plus three best singing vocals.
Meanwhile, Soul Supreme, Matterhorn and Yard Beat were asked to play their five best Vybz Kartel songs along with three singing vocals.
got more intense
No Limit and Warrior Sound were eliminated by virtue of the weakest crowd response.
The clash then moved into the dub segment with Yard Beat, Matterhorn and Soul Supreme exchanging five dubs each in a tune for tune format. Yard Beat was eliminated to set up the final between Soul Supreme and Matterhorn.
The judges were also supposed to be executioners and jury on the night, but as the competition got more intense and tempers flared from both competitors and the patrons, the judges opted to allow the audience to select the winner.
Defending that decision, Sonjah Stanley Niaah, one of the judges, said that in sound clashes, when all is said and done, it is about the people and how they reacted to each performer.
The foreigners did not share the same sentiments, however, and labelled the competition as biased.
Mattin of Warrior Sound International told THE STAR that the judges reasons as to why they were eliminated was a cover-up as they had already decided on the winners in their mind.
"Dem disqualify we on some shaky arguments. This is a big joke. Dem ask the crowd who fi leave? I have no words for this. This is the biggest joke I've ever seen."