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Found 17 results

  1. I have participated and have been following drum corps for a very long time. I have adopted the changes over the years with open arms. I love most of those changes and have no wish to turning the clock back. I start with these points because I know some punk will accuse me of being old school or for not understanding modern drum corps. Rest assured I understand it quite well and I am very familiar with the judging sheets and scoring process. Having said that, it is a shame what the judges are doing to BC this year. I have watched closely all season and have seen the bias that is so obvious. It appears to me the judges have a grudge of some sort against them. Is it the guard outfits? I read the corps changed to longer shorts due to complaints about a little butt cheek or two showing. Is it because the judges believe it is destiny for BD and SCV to be fighting it out during their anniversaries? Maybe it is because they don't have enough pretty colors. I noticed BD has pink in their uniforms. That certainly must be worth an extra 3 or 4 points in visual. It apparently outweighs the extreme drill design BC is marching. Unfortunately, the scores are simply the opinion of a select few judges. They are human and have biases. This years "collective thought" appears to be against the Bluecoats. That truly is a shame given the energy and talent this corps has. The message the judges are sending to all: don't do anything risky, keep your drill simple and clean, focus on having a strong palette of color choices and color guard, both have more impact on your overall score then drill, brass, or percussion. Fast is old school. March slowly and precisely. When playing, be sure it is loud and try to stand still while doing so. If you are going to march at a fast tempo, be sure to do it while not playing. And finally, never ever make the young women in the guard where something feminine. Modern women are not supposed to be feminine or sexy.
  2. Time zone = Mountain 4 p.m. Box Office Opens 7:30 p.m. Welcome & National Anthem 7:40 p.m. Seattle Cascades 7:57 p.m. Oregon Crusaders 8:14 p.m. Mandarins 8:31 p.m. Bluecoats 8:48 p.m. Troopers Bloo brings "Jagged Edge" out west on a pilgrimage to one of DCI's founding sites. They brought "Kinetic Noise" to Casper in 2015. You won't find a more perfect venue to encounter Bloo, or any drum corps, than Natrona County HS stadium. There is no running track encircling the performance field. The Western sky is high, bright and clear; the evening air is light and cool. The performances are up-close and in your face, the way drum corps should be. Last year, fans got an eye/earful of Cavaliers on this same field. In 2013, Crown brought their championship show to NCHS. No one, anywhere, got a better seat to encounter the brass of E=mc2 than they did in Casper. Bloo has a good shot to win this one ; the interesting matchup will be between Troop and Mandarins, their first direct contact of the season. The next night, July 15 in Denver, it's three of the Blues -- Coats, Devils and Knights -- on the same field for the first time this year. Should be a great weekend of drum corps. Worth the trip to Casper.
  3. Hype Train

    So it's the beginning of July. We've got a pretty good idea what most of the corps are doing and what many of them have achieved so far. The sleek new uniforms have been revealed, crazy props dragged all over the field, and people are lining up the strollers in the front row in baby-throwing anticipation. I'm always lurking and reading, and from what I can tell, these are the 5 corps with the most hype right now. (In no particular order) Mandarins - These guys have been slowly building a contender the past few years. They've got a great show design and performers that are keeping up with the demand Can they push their way into the top 12 this year? Bluecoats - Their show design is top notch. They're using that zig-zaggy prop in crazy creative ways. You won't be able to buy a bowler hat anywhere in the US come August. Blue Devils - A brass book that's got more runs than after a trip to Taco Bell. The visual is a step behind, but they are already executing at a high level. No one ever counts out BD. SCV - A really complete show design with medalist potential. They're easily keeping up with BD's scores out on the west coast. The circles are the bomb and they use them SO well. Boston Crusaders - They've been running with the new staff hype for a while, and so far they've delivered. Great music and high visual demand. How far up can they go? What do you think? Did I miss someone? Is there a corps that we haven't seen yet that'll make even bigger waves? (OC, Cascades, Surf) This is just my opinion, feel free to debate and discuss.
  4. The 2017 drum corps season has started, and so has my show review season! I reviewed two shows for the June edition of Drum Corps World. The first was the DCI Tour Premiere cinecast on Thursday, June 22. The focus of that review was on the technical aspects of the cinecast. A separate review of the performances is also in the June issue. The second review was of the Innovations in Brass: Massillon show on Saturday, June 24. That review was a performance review of all 5 World Class and 2 SoundSport corps which performed that night. http://www.gaminnet.info/?p=3054
  5. I am having trouble posting to this site today for some reason. I keep getting a 500 server error. Go to the following link and read my full review on my Facebook site. https://www.facebook.com/notes/jonathan-willis/drum-bugle-corps-massillon-oh/10154434340700806/
  6. Bloo has stayed away from the narrative (story telling) trend for past few years with their more conceptual shows (Tilt, Kinetic Noise, Downside Up). The only other corps that was really more conceptual than narrative this year were SCV and the Cavies, and I'd still call what they did more "hybrid" type shows because there was definitely a story going on in each of them, but it wasn't explicit all the time. Do you think Bloo's win might result in more conceptual show designs from other corps over the next few years?
  7. Now that 2015 is in the books with another extremely successful season by the Blooooooooooo, ahem, Bluecoats, I thought I would start the 2016 thread for all things Bluecoats related. What show should they present this year? Music? Rumors? I believe the Bluecoats have a great opportunity to continue building a championship contender. It’s going to be very tough, but they have showed us over the last few years that they have the chops to do it. Is this their year? 2010 = 3rd 2011 = 7th 2012 = 6th 2013 = 5th 2014 = 2nd 2015 = 3rd 2016 = ???
  8. Bluecoats 2014

    From Facebook: "2014 SNEAK PEAK: We will be playing "The Hymn of Acxiom" by the wonderful new artist Vienna Teng." "Also, according to his twitter, composer Eric Whitacre is currently transcribing this powerful piece for chorus." This is awesome. Vienna's music is amazing, and THoA is especially beautiful. Listen to it here (she's not a new artist, though; she has 5 CDs going back to 2003).
  9. Bluecoats 2015

    The Bluecoats just recently released this video about their January camp and a (verbal) preview of their 2015 show music: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ORD-rl4sSw For me, the Bluecoats are my "corps to watch" this upcoming season. The direction they're going to take after such a memorable season they had with TILT is going to be interesting. Thoughts? Comments? Any other news from Canton? Is it June 17 yet?
  10. Corps (in preforming order): Start Time: 7:30 PM Weather: -The Crossmen Partly Cloudy, high of 97 -The Bluecoats -Carolina Crown -The Blue Devils -Santa Clara Vanguard -Phantom Regiment -The Cadets -The Cavaliers WHO'S ALL GOING??? My Predictions: 1st: Cadets 2nd: BD 3rd: Coats 4th: Crown 5th: SCV 6th: Cavies 7th: Phantom 8th: Crossmen
  11. Great night of drum corps! No rain, only a light wind, packed full house (arrive early, lots of folks with reserved tickets had trouble getting to their seats as everyone "spread" on the bleachers and some spots seemed to dissappear). This is the grass stadium where the MN Vikings have training camp, no track-grass right up to the bleachers-the crowd is so close some drum majors conduct from the stands. My hometown and most fav stadium to play in! Some totally biased thoughts from last night: (i have not seen much of anything live/video/etc for this season, have not even had time to read much) Govenaires: classic show for them, entertaining music choices and they performed the heck out of it. Contra (tuba?...I might be old...) solo with the gold flags is a great design choice. I suspect the closer has not been on the field long, but it is going to rock by August. MN Brass: this show is already looking polished-great guard coustuming and flags, loved the music. Great solo work in the hornline, everything looks and sounds like another DCA-sweep for MN this year :) RACINE SCOUTS: props to the 4 kids in the brass line (yep, 4). Of course there are balance issues with the full drumline and out, but they hung in and did a nice job in the ballad. Nice vocal solo, and the guard work that was ready for the show fit well. Horns were staged near the pit for most of the show. COLT CADETS: my kiddos-great job!!! Full show marching on the field, some guard works needs to be added in places yet. Big sound, then when the shakos come off you remember that many are only 12 years old...yikes! Members are very animated and selling the show, soloists did a great job, so proud of you guys! Pioneer: my vote for "most improved", but I have been out of the loop the past 2 years with the baby...anyway, wow! Big corps in all sections, lots of volume, entertaining show. The costumes and flags fit the theme great, it was easy to follow the story. They are not moving as fast or playing as many notes as the big guys, so I know they are not likely to hit top-15, but they should be very proud of this show. VIP to the cymbal line-lots of effects, good marching and visuals COLTS-Go Red Team! Love the show, set #3 grabbed the crowd great and the wall of sound on the first big hits got them roaring. Trumpet solos rocked, vocal solo was great, and lots of little details on the front sideline with pit and voice actors that added a lot (popcorn...lol...) I can't wait to see how the ending changes in the next few weeks. Narration was a bit hard to hear due to the stands so close to the pit, with speakers aimed right at the wall, but this stadium is unique, so it should not be an issue most other places. Love ya lots guys-keep up the great work! MADISON SCOUTS-love the 1990s uniforms, the whole show has the 90s feel with jazz and screaming sopranos (trumpets....). Big wall of sound was the loudest of the night. Fun, happy show. BLUECOATS-after reading a bit on this show before seeing it, I knew some things I wanted to watch for. I think they maybe the used the silver atom things more then in the first couple of shows, but I don't have any prior viewings to go on. Guard was in and on them quiet a bit, they moved around, etc. The speaker effects are very cool, I loved the muted trumpets being bounced around the field. We were sitting right on the 50, so the best possible listening point. I hope folks further out near the end zones will be able to get the same show we got. But, as cool as that was, I was the most impressed with the crazy body work the corps is doing. Is it required to take years of ballet to be in the 'coats horn line? Slow motion running...crazy cool.... I have never had a good handle on scores, so I won't go into that. Placements were as they performed, and I agree with those 100%....but I hope the COLTS overtake Madison with some crazy cleaning and a few tricks up their sleeves.... I will try to add some photos soon.
  12. After reading through the 2015 predictions thread I've noticed that not many people are counting on the Bluecoats to be top 3 or even win DCI this year. I'm just curious as to why this is? It looks as if the Bluecoats have the same exact staff this year. You would think they would be better than they were last year. After hearing rumors about the show I honestly hope they are true. And also after seeing a video of them in January marching, they look like they have a whole lot stronger visual program this year.. Anyone care to explain?
  13. For the past 2 summers I have marched with the Bluecoats Drum and Bugle Corps out of Canton Ohio, and it has changed my life completely. Performing in front of thousands of people and touring the country completely changed who I was as a person. I learned how to push myself beyond my limits and to accept nothing but perfection. Over these summers, the people I had barely known at the beginning of the summers have become my family by the time August rolled around; and that is the family I wish to return to next summer. In order to return to my family next summer, I have to put forth around $2,500-Which is the average price a member of any Drum and Bugle Corps pays. I have already taken care of a majority of those tour fees but I still need some help with the rest of the tour fees and the extra cost associated with marching. (Camp fees, etc.) My Bluecoats family is worth a lot more to me than my tour fees, and I hope that you all can see that and help me by donating. If you want to talk to me about my experience last summer, or need more convincing to donate, don't hesitate to e-mail me! Anything and everything helps! GoFundMe Link: www.gofundme.com/ryan2015 Email: Ryan.j.greco1@gmail.com Six Words, Ryan
  14. Week 1 [June 18 - June 21] (74.075) - The Cadets (73.700) - Blue Devils (73.016) - Carolina Crown (72.800) - Bluecoats (70.525) - Santa Clara Vanguard (70.250) - Phantom Regiment (69.266) - The Cavaliers (66.775) - Madison Scouts (66.400) - Boston Crusaders (65.550) - Blue Knights (64.250) - Blue Stars (63.075) - Crossmen (61.633) - Troopers (60.450) - Spirit of Atlanta (60.400) - Colts (59.975) - Pacific Crest (58.575) - Mandarins (47.350) - Pioneer - The Academy - Cascades - Jersey Surf - Oregon Crusaders *Rankings are determined by averaging the corps' scores from Sunday through Saturday.
  15. Akron Cinecast Review Let’s start off with some disclaimers. I’m a guard person, and I’m much more active in the winter than in the summer. I have no musical training, so I can’t comment much on brass or percussion. I mostly watched the color guard and overall visual effect. With that out of the way, here we go. Cavaliers: I just could not get into this show because of the cheesiness factor. My guess is this show looks and feels much different under the lights, because during the day it felt comical and forced from the guard. The guard characterization was not right for me – I know that’s what they were given, but as an overall concept I think it was wrong. Also, didn’t Crossmen do this a few years back? Positively, the marimba feature is awesome. I enjoyed the drill; lots of visual impact and some clean moments from a guard perspective. The guard relies heavily on the 8 weapon boys – kind of obvious that there are some flag members that are struggling. Cavies have a high upside with their visual, but there needs to be a more mature vibe from the color guard. Scouts: The commentators nailed it at the end of the performance: what was the significance of the actor who walks from one corner to the other corner, does a tumbling routine, and then show’s over? I know this characterization will be added in, but they’ve created so many moments around him that to not explain him or his role was criminal. They even had a show designer talking about the show who made no mention of it. I like the progression from black and white to psychedelic. The guard has a lot to clean and clarify, but I was underwhelmed by vocabulary and impact. Another reviewer said there weren’t a lot of impact moments, and I agree. What’s memorable about this show? Corps proper uniforms weren’t impressive, but the guard looked good. Overall, I would have put them last tonight. Boston: Okay, I liked this show, and I’m trying to separate bias. Michael Lentz show design is all over this production, and it’s obviously something new to DCI, let alone Boston. The corps struggled through their first performance. The visual demand is sky-high, and achievement is way behind. BAC has so much work ahead of them to clean up visually. That said, I love the moments. I am familiar with Lentz’s style in the winter, and it’s clear they went visual first (as opposed to Bluecoats/Scouts music first). The guard personifies the show, and I thought they struggled to meet a high-demand show. Weapons probably had the most drops of all corps. The last minute or two of work still needs to be filled in. But again, I like this show. I didn’t need a storyline, and clearly they know where their moments are. I thought they should have been closer to Cavies, but obviously a lot of dirt to be cleaned and filled in. I am looking forward to seeing where this show is at the end of July. Phantom: Totally opposite from Boston in terms of readability and cleanliness. This is probably my favorite PR production in sometime. Clear storyline that’s not totally hokey. PR’s guard puts a lot of emphasis on clean, readable work; although to me it looked like harder work than last year. They need to work on some of the transition stuff, especially uniform changes because it was just way too forced instead of an impactful change. The music was very enjoyable, and complimented the visual. PR has a history of adding onto their visual over the summer, so I look forward to the additions. As it stands now, they just look safe. Solidly middle of the finalist pack, and only ahead because of clarity. Very similar to last year, and I could see them getting passed by a corps or three. The white guard costumes were correct, but not totally flattering to the girls. Characterization was spot on – they expressed themselves wonderfully and believably. My favorite moment might have been the wing-flapping free arms under a toss. I’m not sure what more beef can be added to this show, so it will really be up to other corps to see if they can catch up to PR’s polished show. Cadets: I saw their run-through they posted as a live feed, so I spent a lot of time watching my friend who was featured in a lot of parts. Great overall show, and felt more traditional than the corps around them. Music was great as I love Copland. Guard was performing at a high level. I am wondering about the costume changes and hoping that adds more to the visual program. I don’t really like the blue costumes – they don’t seem to be the right shade to evoke Americana and lore. My other big criticism was the long phrases of ensemble work. I wanted to see something a little more interesting instead of the whole guard spinning the same work. That style is great for an effect, but after a while loses its luster. I see why the corps is winning; there is not a down section of the show. But I do struggle to come up with a memorable or signature moment besides the ending, which is mostly memorable for being a big musical hit. I could see this show leveling off and falling out of a medal. Crown: This was a hard show for me to consider. At times, the show was championship caliber – pushing boundaries, creating amazing visual impact, and interesting and entertaining music. But, there were also moments of nothing – no impact, no emotion, and using props/equipment just to be using props/equipment. And so I am not sure if I like this show or not. I don’t think the trampolines add much – there wasn’t anything super cool being done with them. I liked the Frisbees, but did not like the hoops the guard danced with. I hated the guard costumes – looked very high school and not like mature performers (exception: the face mask was interesting). If Crown can resolve the dead portions of their show and eliminate some of the cheesiness I would be much more on board. A lot of high achievement from the guard, but the costumes made them look young. I had similar feelings about the corps proper uniforms – I think it makes the corps look short (or maybe it was a bad camera angle). There’s a lot to play around with in this show, so I am looking forward to seeing where the show evolves. Bluecoats: Another show where I spent a lot of time looking for my friend in the guard. As an aside, I have no idea how the DCI judges stay focused for the whole show. There’s a lot of tenacity there. Back to Bloo, this show was great, but still a step behind Crown/Cadets. The problem with moving up in the rankings is you have to knock someone out, and I’m not sure if they can dislodge Crown/Cadets/BD for a medalist spot. The programming was great – I really enjoy the concept of tilt with the props and the altered field. One example – when the guard spins around the perimeter, it’s a great effect as opposed to when Madison did it which looked thin and too spread out. I appreciate a lot of the nuance, but I think they need to dial it up to take a crack at the corps above them. I love where the show is going so I hope they can pull it off.