Jah Itagaki's REGGAE LIFE Special

REPORT: World Clash 2K2

Tomomi Ueki-Lawrence, Contributor

This year's theme for World Clash was "The Search for a New Blood," and therefore, 4 out of 7 sounds were there for the first time. It ended up to be a surprise after surprise although it seem to be the easy win by the veterans or the local favorite.


First surprise was the fall of Tony Matterhorn. He disappeared from the clash after second round, with Red Spider and Ricky Trooper. It was a surprise enough that he did not say a word and just played tune after tune, and used hip hop group 50cents' special. The audience gave an enough forward and looked like it was going to be between Matterhorn, King Agony, and Bass Odyssey. However because of the boos he received from the audience was loud enough, Matterhorn fell from the war. Of course Matterhorn was VEXED, he was arguing and upset even after the clash.

Rebel Tone

Next surprise came from Matsimela and Rebel Tone. We never thought they would do as good. Most surprise came from Rebel Tone. This unknown sound from Toronto, Canada definitely made their presence by winning the clash. The lesson is...Do not underestimate the new sound!


Several people were surprised that Ricky Trooper was dropped after second round. However, many of us knew that he was struggling after he left Killamanjaro. Trooper tried to hold the ground on the first round, but the second round was disastrous. Bottles flew, and booing became bigger and bigger. Many people were hoping to see Trooper's come back, so it became extremely disappointing rather than the surprise.

King Agony

Actually, so many clash goers believed that King Agony was going to be the champion because of the home turf advantage and their ability to hype up the crowd. BUT, because of the violation of "No Forced Forward" during the third round, they were disqualified. After Matterhorn was out, we were so sure that it would be between Odyssey and King Agonu...but who would have though it would no be the case??? It was devastating both for the sound and the audience...

Red Spider

Red Spider was talk of the town in some way since Mighty Crown was not the sound that was representing Japan this year. Many of us were expecting the good competition; however, they were out after the second round. The problem seem to be the "talk." Although Matterhorn succeeded to get the forward without talking for the first round, talking is part of the most important essence for the clash. Junior was talking for the first round, many people had hard time hearing him clearly. Then, Junior did not talk on the second round and that made the matter even worse. None of the member never came out from the booth and it looks like many people were not satisfied about that either. Don't take me wrong, Red Spider has some WICKED specials, but talk and the stage presence should be reconsidered and practiced.

Squingy from Bass Odyssey

Bass Odyssey was so good until tune fi tune, everyone was so sure that they would be the champion again...then some strange thing happened, that they FLOPPED during tune fi tune. Knowing that they are so good with tune fi tune, this is unheard of! This is as unsettling as this year's Matterhorn. Odyssey should have won and Odyssey could win easily...but Rebel Tone took audience on their side and that was it for Bass Odyssey.

Rebel Tone with trophy

As a result, it was change from old to the new by passing the trophy to the "New Blood". However, I do not think I was the only one who was not happy with the result of this clash. Audience become younger and younger, and the clash itself is getting less attention, I am concerned about the future of the clash business. It is interesting to see what would be the theme and the rule for the next year's World Clash.

Elephant Man

Last but not least, Elephant Man did handle the clash very nicely. He wore the baseball uniform like he did for Fully Loaded and kept crowd entertained. He is truly an entertainer, and I hope I will see him do more hosting as well as the performance which is always good.