Kranium flies high in sound clash

By Brian Bonitto
Associate Editor —
Auto & Entertainment

Monday, August 27, 2018

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AFTER four rounds of fierce competition, deejay Kranium and his Frequent Flyers sound system were named winners of the 2018 Red Bull Culture Clash at 787 Windsor in Atlanta, Georgia, on Friday evening.

“It was all about execution. We had a game plan and we stick to it. I wasn't worried about any of the other sound (system). Wi just mek sure wi go out deh and do weh wi haffi do,” Kranium told the Jamaica Observer shortly after the celebratory confetti settled.

On their way to victory, the Frequent Flyers (with Major Hype, Noah Powa, and DJ Polish) had to dispatch Atlanta's Zaytoven with Zaytown Global; American DJ Mija and her Don't Think outfit; and American -born Latin deejay Fuego with Fireboy Sound.

“Mija played good to me. So what we did was jus' gwaan juggle and be patient,” said Kranium.

The Jamaican-born, New York-based Kranium is no stranger to the contest. He won in 2016 as part of Popcaan's Mixpak at the London 02 Arena. That crew comprised fellow dancehall act Spice as well as selector Tony Matterhorn. He described his current win as “special”.

“I knew nobody had the special guest that could surprise the crowd like our special guest,” Kranium told the Jamaica Observer.

That special guest was Mavado, whose appearance on the Frequent Flyers' stage elicited screams and cheers from the audience. His abbreviated performance of Weh Dem A Do, Last Night, On The Go and My League helped seal the deal for Frequent Flyers.

“Mavado ah one a di realest yute deh out deh. When mi link him, him never hesitate… it wasn't difficult at all… Mavado was very professional,” Kranium added.

In addition to Mavado, Frequent Flyers' set included performances by Gaza Slim and Masicka.

The evening saw each sound system, located at the four corners of the covered venue, vying for the loudest crowd support in categories: Temperature Rising; The Selector; Sleep With The Enemy; and All In. The winner of each round was determined by the sound-level monitor displayed on large LED screens inside the venue.

The Sleep With The Enemy Round saw teams playing each other's genre. Flyers were given Latin music, which left them falling flat.

Fuego and his Fireboys, however, did justice to dancehall music. During their set they brought on Mr Easy and Demarco, who helped them get a huge 'forward' from the large Caribbean audience.

Despite their loss, the Fireboys took the competition in stride.

“It was good; it was really competitive as Jamaica had the bodies lit. It was hard for us being Spanish-speaking people to reach out to English speakers. I'm not going to lie, it was a whole different ball game. Jamaican people really know how to party,” said Latin hip hop artiste Yo Chamo. “But we're all island people; we party in Spanish and y'all party in broken patois.”

Started in 2010 (there was a hiatus in 2015), Red Bull Culture Clash is billed as “the world's biggest musical battle.”

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