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hostrauser last won the day on August 18 2020

hostrauser had the most liked content!

Profile Information

  • Your Drum Corps Experience
    Todd Ryan cut me from the Blue Devils at my first tryout because I'm the worst marcher the world has ever seen.
  • Your Favorite Corps
    Phantom Regiment, Santa Clara Vanguard, Carolina Crown
  • Your Favorite All Time Corps Performance (Any)
    2008 Phantom Regiment, 2018 Santa Clara Vanguard, 1994 Blue Devils, 1999 Santa Clara Vanguard
  • Your Favorite Drum Corps Season
    1993, 1995, 1999
  • Gender
  • Location
    Milwaukee, WI
  • Interests
    Influenza, Seafood, Bowling

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  1. It did, but in addition to the lawsuits facing YEA, band directors on the Atlantic seaboard were getting really fed up with the way USBands was being run (a lot had to do with scheduling and last-minute, poorly communicated changes from the stories I have heard first-hand). The NESBA gained more bands in Massachusetts, a group of band directors in Maryland started up their own circuit (MMBA) to get away from USBands, and I believe Cavalcade picked up some groups, too. I think USBands has started to recover under the Blue Devils' leadership, but damage was definitely done to the circuit's reputation.
  2. They aren't the first. Vanguard went last year. I'm still in "I'll believe it when I see it" mode for their return in 2024.
  3. DCI is broken. How much more proof do the powers that be in Indianapolis need? Two DCI champion legacy corps in two years.
  4. Thank you, this is exactly what I was trying to communicate. My argument is not that "there is no creativity in drum corps any more." My argument is that "wild" shows (like Bluecoats this season) cannot and will not ever win in the current system.
  5. Heh, I realize now there is a potential confusing contradiction in my story: I claim to have not participated as a spectator in the 2023 DCI season yet I reference 2023 shows. Clarification: I watched the Finals performances of the three medalists on The Site That Shall Not Be Named. This is the first year in over 30 that I have not spent any money supporting DCI.
  6. 2023 was the first time in over 30 years that I was not a DCI spectator in any way, shape, or form. I didn't go to any shows. I didn't go to Big, Loud, Live in the theater. And I didn't purchase video performances (live streams now, replacing the DVDs and VHS tapes of yore). Because the drum corps atmosphere--not the corps themselves, but the overall drum corps environment--has gotten truly, stiflingly... Boring. 1992 was the year I was introduced to DCI. 1993 was the year I became a super-fan. I think I still have those 1993 tapes memorized. In 1993, the build-up style of judging was only about a decade old. I remember the interviews with Jeff Fiedler and Gene Monterastelli on those tapes, and Monterastelli in particular pointing out the big flaw of the tick system: it was beating down corps trying new things in favor of corps who weren't doing as much stuff but were doing it cleaner. And it really did lead to a revolution in drum corps design. From 1988 to 1992, five years, there were five different champions with five different and distinct styles. And 1993 promised to continue that trend: Cadets, Star of Indiana, and Phantom put out three fantastic drum corps shows that were completely and totally different from one another. It was an exciting era. It was partly because you didn't know who was going to win from year to year, but even more so because you didn't know HOW that corps was going to get to the top. The Blue Devils won in 1994, 1996, and 1997 with three entirely different show designs. Ah, the Blue Devils. So much dislike of that corps and resentment of their recent success from the peanut gallery. To hear some people talk, the Blue Devils are everything that is wrong with modern drum corps. And that's KINDA right, but probably not in the way you'd expect. The 2005 Blue Devils changed drum corps probably even more than 1993 Star of Indiana did, though it's not recognized as such. After that lackluster season (by their standards), the Blue Devils changed. The Blue Devils have the smartest design staff in DCI, have for a long time. 2005 made them re-evaluate everything they did in show design, whether it was a conscious decision or a subconscious recognition of reality, I do not know. But the Blue Devils were the first, the fastest, and the best at recognizing what DCI judges do and do not want, and they simply trimmed everything outside of that from their shows going forward. They found the one major, hard and fast rule of modern DCI judging and had it pretty much locked in by 2007. They've finished 1st or 2nd (by tiny margins) every year since. What is this magic rule that the Blue Devils learned over 15 years ago, that other corps either haven't figured out or refuse to abide by? Simple: THERE IS NO EXTRA CREDIT IN DRUM CORPS. There's no extra credit! Don't do anything you can get away with not doing if you want to score well. Judges want variety of demand and cleanliness, the Blue Devils provide that in spades every season (it's usually the SAME variety of demand... but I get ahead of myself. More on that in a moment). Anything beyond that, difficulty for difficulty's sake, is just going to drag your score down unless you can get it as clean as the Blue Devils. Which, let's face it, you probably can't. Look at 2023. The Bluecoats had, in this idiot's opinion, a lot more visual difficulty in their show. But the Blue Devils were LOADS cleaner. The miniscule spacing and timing problems that popped up here and there in the Bluecoats' show simply weren't present in the Blue Devils' show. And, of course, the Blue Devils guard was near flawless. I think corps feel the need to try to do MORE than the Blue Devils to beat them, but I think it's the exact opposite. They need to do LESS, and make it CLEANER. The Build-Up judging system has fallen into the same pitfall the old Tick system had: it is beating down corps trying new things in favor of corps who aren't doing as much stuff but were doing it cleaner. Full circle. Now, this next sentence will probably surprise you, so I hope you are sitting down. I love the Blue Devils. Seriously. 1994 Blue Devils remains one of my Top 5 shows of all time. I CHOSE to audition for the Blue Devils over any other corps (back when I had that youthful naivete that hid from me just how awful of a visual performer I was). And I love the Blue Devils design concepts. I just wish it weren't pretty much the same thing, year after year after year. The same staging concepts. The same visual elements. The Blue Devils are a truly awesome sports car, but all they do is change the paint job each year. Because they know (consciously or subconsciously) they can't do much else without getting hammered for it. Who's to blame? The Blue Devils? DCI judges? I feel it's kind of a chicken and the egg situation. On one hand, the Blue Devils have heavily influenced the course of DCI judging. On the other hand, many of their design features became mainstays solely due to positive reinforcement from the judges. I would absolutely LOVE to see what the Blue Devils staff would come up with if the judging system gave any signs at all that something different would be acceptable. Even the most recent non-BD champions (2018 Vanguard and 2016 Bluecoats) have strong Blue Devils influence on their design styles. And that's why 1993 and the years surrounding it remain such a fond memory for me. Sure, those G bugles sounded dreadful, and even the top corps made performance fracks that you wouldn't see or hear in ANY finalist corps today. But year after year after year you not only had no idea who was going to win, you had no idea HOW they were going to win. Cadets' style? Star of Indiana's style? Phantom's style? Blue Devils' style? But today, there is only one winning style: the Blue Devils' style. All other styles have been judged and found wanting. Everyone is trapped. Even the Blue Devils. And that makes drum corps boring. ************** "It is better to remain silent at the risk of being thought a fool, than to talk and remove all doubt of it." --Maurice Switzer "Hold my beer." --Hostrauser
  7. I liked this show a whole lot more than I expected to. Quick question, though: who provided the voiceover/narration for this show? He sounds EXACTLY like Clavicus Vile from Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (voiced by Stephen Russell).
  8. Blue Devils better than everyone else? Sure, I buy that. Blue Devils nearly a point and a half better than everyone else? Naaaah.
  9. This song just SCREAMS "Blue Devils" to me, especially the horn riffs (uh, horn patch riffs) (first heard at 1:08). "Music for a Sushi Restaurant" -- Harry Styles (yes, the video is a bit weird) Now this one I can see any number of corps doing. This song is a whole groove. "Cynical" - Emei
  10. So. My father passed suddenly on July 22nd. He was 74. Needless to say, I've had a bit too much going on to pay attention to drum corps. There were no 7/23 rankings. There were no 7/30 rankings. There will probably not be 8/6 rankings. And then the season will be over! I thank all of you for your support. We'll try this again next year, God willing and the creek don't rise.
  11. Blood tests, endoscopies, CT scans, MRIs, PET scans. I've had them all. Oh, did you mean the drum corps scores? I enter the results into a spreadsheet loaded with formulas (formulae? forumulai? formica?). Only Wed-Sat scores are considered. The formulas compare the results against prior scoring margins to determine if the scores are progressing in a reasonable fashion of if they are jumping all over the place. Dampening or boosting factors are added to specific shows if they calculate significantly above or below other recent shows. Daily progressions are then calculated to give every corps a score for that day, even if they did not perform. Then I add a dash of magic (or bs, depending on your opinion) to get the final results, and extrapolate the weekly rating forward to guesstimate a season-ending score.
  12. When we last saw our intrepid hero, he was undergoing a battery of tests (some of which involved objects being shoved in uncomfortable areas). On August 1st, 2022 the verdict came back: stage 4 colorectal cancer that had metastasized to the liver. Not the news I was hoping for. I was three weeks shy of my 46th birthday. A large part of the past year has been spent in hospitals and cancer wards having gallons of poison injected into my body. The goal was to knock the cancer down enough that they could perform a bowel resection and remove part of my liver. Seventeen rounds of chemotherapy and one week of radiation later, tests in May, 2023 could not detect any signs of active cancer in my body. We actually overshot the goal: both of my oncological surgeons agreed that surgery was no longer necessary, at least not right now. In June we decided to shut down chemo to let my body recover. My next round of tests is in early August and, if those come back clean, I will officially be in remission. Far too early to say we've won the war, but the first major battle has gone as well as we could have hoped, literally a best case scenario. I thank you for all of your prayers and good thoughts. To the delight of some and the dismay of others, I don't intend on leaving any time soon. So, in the words of Meatwad from Aqua Teen Hunger Force: "God has allowed me to live another day, and I'm about to make it everyone's problem." In DCI, everyone is facing the usual perennial problem: how to catch up to the Blue Devils. Forget going undefeated: will Concord even lose a CAPTION this season? Also, while Vanguard is inactive, another corps is stepping up to try to ensure that California continues to have three finalist corps. 99.045 Blue Devils 96.742 Bluecoats 96.517 Boston Crusaders 96.180 Carolina Crown 93.180 Phantom Regiment 92.078 Mandarins 90.711 Cadets 89.567 Blue Stars 88.956 Cavaliers 87.689 Troopers 87.433 Colts 84.440 Pacific Crest 82.923 Crossmen 82.736 Blue Knights 82.571 Madison Scouts 82.121 Spirit of Atlanta 81.582 Academy 79.217 Music City 79.185 Blue Devils B 76.129 Gold 75.215 Genesis 74.731 Spartans 73.194 Jersey Surf 71.011 Golden Empire 68.106 Cascades 67.426 Impulse 66.947 Southwind 66.894 River City Rhythm 66.191 Vessel 64.830 The Battalion 64.468 7th Regiment 63.830 Guardians 61.947 Colt Cadets 60.095 Blue Devils C 59.726 Heat Wave 58.979 Raiders TBD Les Stentors
  13. I think the uniforms look pretty bad when just standing there, but I expect they will look absolutely AMAZING when in motion on the field. And I'm sure Scott Chandler planned exactly for that.
  14. Baloney. That was true 15-20 years ago, when obtaining all of the mandatory rights and coordination licenses was still a fairly new industry, but not anymore. I can assure you that many of the "heavy hitters" started asking for this season's rights before last season was even concluded. And I doubt any of the Top 6 had any unresolved licensing issues after about March of this year. At the latest.
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