For one night only Kensington Oval was renamed The Arena as thousands packed the venue Saturday night for Socatology – the biggest soca event for the year so far.
At 11 p.m., the show got off to a kicking start with live performances from local artistes Level Vibes, Shanta Prince and none other than the Hypa Dawg aka Lil Rick who got the crowd hyped for the mainly Trinidadian headline acts who were to come.
When Kerwin Dubois hit the stage after midnight, the crowd was already in full hype and from the time he began his set with Press Ah Button the crowd was singing along word for word.
He served up a platter of other hits including Possessed, Spoil Myself and even pleased the females with a ladies wining session which included Monsta Winer and Too Real before leaving the crowd waving at the end of the 25-minute set to No Apology.
The 2015 International Groovy Soca Monarch winner Olatunji Yearwood appeared quickly after dapperly attired in a bright orange shirt and African print skinny slacks. The former junior calypso monarch mixed up his set with a host of genres backed by the Djs including rap and R&B before jokingly reminding the crowd that they were attending a soca show. He ended with his 2015 Carnival hit Ola which sent the crowd into a frenzy.
Benjai gave a good account of himself with songs like Over and Over, Feter, Wine To The Side and his 2015 Carnival hit Phenomenal. Later in the night, he told the DAILY NATION he had a really good Carnival season and the fact that he loves what he does inspires him to continue yearly.
The show promoters should certainly avoid a repeat of having such a long break before the headline act. It took just over one hour for the Asylum Band to set up. The rain poured briefly during that period and the crowd became a bit restless.
However, when co-lead singer of the band Fay Ann Lyons finally appeared after 3 a.m., the crowd was immediately responsive. She was quickly joined by co-lead singer Bunji to screams from the ladies. The husband and wife duo did not disappoint. They belted out hit after hit and Bunji served up a slew of freestyle chants as he is so known for.
Of note, is that during his first chant he advised show promoters not to have such a distinct separation of the general and VIP sections with the large fence running through the centre of the venue.
Fadda Fox joined the Asylum Band to perform his 2014 crop over hit song Duckin’. Unfortunately, the set was cut short as the band was advised they had to leave the stage at 4 a.m. sharp. They quickly performed portions of songs including Frontaway, Heavy T Bumpa, Runaway, and Red Light District among others. Some members of the crowd were overheard saying they were not ready to go home when the show came to an anticlimactic end at 4:05 a.m.
Hosts Kirk Brown and Trinidadian emcee Wassi kept the crowd upbeat in between performances. It was Wassi’s first time on stage in Barbados and she did an excellent job commanding the huge crowd. Other performers included Ricardo Drue, Tallpree, Erphan Alves, King Bubba and Tambrind Man.