skywhopper

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Everything posted by skywhopper

  1. I guess that explains why so many of the synth parts use painfully slow-attack patches.
  2. I definitely agree that many synth parts are challenging. My own example of the button-press being next to no achievement related to triggering sampled voice, for which the timing is rarely as critical as musical tones. And certainly the Bluecoats' use of electronics is extremely effective, and likely require special techniques on the part of the synth player that go well beyond the norm. That said, I'm skeptical that synth players face timing issues any more challenging than what any other corps members confront (especially the guard who are literally waving a flag to emphasize their timing
  3. The first piece of the Cavaliers' encore at Murfreesboro was to play a dance track over the PAs and have the battery play along with it. You could hear that the battery was tapping along, but certainly couldn't make out any detail of what they were playing. Mainly it felt like the Cavs saying "hey, check out this sick tune!" as part of their encore, which was really disappointing.
  4. It does seem the judges feel that way, but Crown's show is certainly *clearer* if not cleaner.
  5. Better yet, what if all the members had on fire-resistant stunt suits and were ON FIRE?
  6. What you say is true-- corps staff decides the drill, choreography, uniforms, guard equipment, music arrangement, etc. Completely non-corps-related adults manufacture the costumes, the equipment, the instrumetns, etc. Those things make up one part of the product that's judged on the field. But the larger part of the product is the execution of that design by the members. And whatever points you get from having good drill or nice uniforms pales in comparison to the points you get from members executing the drill and choreography. After all, if the execution is poor, then the design scores fall
  7. This is the seventh year since electronics were introduced to drum corps and I feel like show designers and arrangers are starting to get a footing for how they want to use the tools electronic instrumentation affords to them. I'm curious what good and bad aspects fans (especially those who've only been following the activity for the past few years) see in this year's shows. A few thoughts to kick off conversation (note, I've not been following all the corps since I used to rely on the Fan Network VOD, but I did see the Murfreesboro show live): * Of the current top 8, the corps using electro
  8. Indeed. In Dante's Inferno, the way they escape from Hell is via Satan's ########. So...
  9. I've been out of the loop and not following the corps this year until the last week or so, and the lack of the Fan Network hasn't helped, since I can't massage my schedule around the live streams. But anyway, after some Youtube prep, I saw the show at Murfreesboro accompanied by four adults (one new to drum corps) and four kids (three new to drum corps). All but one person said Crown was their favorite. One kid preferred the Blue Devils show. I was mainly impressed by the clarity and focus of Crown's show. Sitting relatively low, the drill and formations weren't clear for any of the corps, an
  10. Congratulations to all the Crown members, staff, and volunteers who have made this season possible so far. It's a fantastic achievement to win any major regional and Crown has come a long way since early in the season. This is a fantastic show and it can totally win this year, but the competition is fierce, so keep striving!
  11. It's all of a piece with amplifying the pit, adding synths, upping the corps sizes, and amplifying soloists. I wonder if we can correlate the average volume of the corps to the average age (and implied hearing loss) of the corps staff and judges.
  12. Don't confuse assertions of rights with actual rights. Copyright holders regularly assert all sorts of rights they are not entitled to. The rule against recording a live performance is enforced by the venue's right to throw you out, not by the copyright holder's right to prevent you from recording the event. However, even when copyright holders have a legal right to prevent something, that doesn't mean we should accept it unthinkingly. Copyright law is entirely created by governments, and changes to copyright law tend to take away rights we currently have, or are promised to have. Such as the
  13. My question is: surely this does not affect shows containing only public domain music, or shows consisting of only music composed specifically for the corps (eg, most of the Cavaliers' 2000s shows) (at least, assuming the corps bought full rights to the work when they commissioned it, which may not be the case)? I suppose such shows comprise a very small percentage of all shows, and thus would probably not be worth preserving on Fan Network in the absence of all the rest.
  14. I think it all depends on how it's executed and how it affects musical development of the end product. Crown 2009 was mentioned and it's a great example of both letting the source material follow it's own development (the Puck sequence is brilliant) and one of the most successful chop and bop sequences ever (the ballad mashup of Somewhere and Somewhere over the Rainbow). The 2009 ballad (along with 2008 and 2011 as well) is brilliant in the way it leaps seamlessly between the melodies without the jarring feeling you often get from chop and bop arranging. Typically the worst case is when a mu
  15. I think you're reading things into what I said that aren't there. I'm asking that if we use electronics, let's use them well. In regards to Crown 2011, that was an excellent use of synth that required a talented pianist and provided him with a challenging part. However, the vast majority of synth usage out there today is *not* challenging for a skilled piano-keyboard player. I don't think it's insulting to ask that synth players are asked to be as proficient with their instrument as the brass players are. As for the dynamics and amp levels, you and I have disagreed on this in the past. I've b
  16. Regardless of the show format ideas, the *website* for this show is the best I've ever seen by far. Kudos, garfield, to you or whoever on your team put this site together. This ought to be the standard to which all DCI show pages is held. Keep up the amazing work!
  17. I do think that for an activity that everyone claims is about the kids and how they perform, the increasing use of electronics and amplification for the most part actually takes away from the kids' chance to show their stuff. Pre-recorded narration, dead-simple synthesizer parts that overpower or replace the brass, soundboard guys adjusting the mix in real time. None of these things give the performers on the field an opportunity to demonstrate *their* skills. Instead, they are entirely about the skills of the designers. For me, that makes the live performance itself less interesting and less
  18. Looks like the other six from the top 14 (except for Madison) each got to perform in a TOC show (or two in the case of Boston): 7/13 DeKalb, IL - no SCV, add Blue Stars 7/14 Warrensburg, MO - G7 only 7/18 Houston, TX - no Cadets, add Blue Knights 7/25 Nashville, TN - all of G7, add Boston (and Music City) 7/27 Charlotte, NC - no Bluecoats, add Spirit of Atlanta 7/31 Piscataway, NJ - G7 only 8/3 Buffalo, NY - no Phantom, add Troopers 8/4 Massillon, OH - no Blue Devils or Cavaliers, add Boston and Crossmen Perhaps this was the compromise for adding an eighth TOC show? Boston gets two be
  19. I was not being serious when I blamed trombones. I think Facebook, Reddit, etc, satisfy most people's desires for drum corps chat and specialized message boards like DCP are on the decline across the board. To be honest, though, trombones and french horns along with more voice, more samples, and more synths have made *me* less excited about this season, which has translated into less visiting and less engagement and less posting. The any-brass rule is not a major negative step, but it's just one more babystep towards the no-rules paradise envisioned for DCI that I'm not a fan of. That's all r
  20. Haven't heard this year's SCV show, but while their Les Mis show was my favorite of 2013 and one of my favorite Vanguard shows ever, I remember feeling like there were some iffy spots in the brass arrangement. And the Planets show in 2012... seeing it live, it drove me nuts with all the power chords (ie tonic and fifth only), and musical flow-wise I thought the Planets show was pretty poorly done as well. So, I'm sad to hear of continuing issues in this department.
  21. Wait, I thought this thread was for complaining about trombones.
  22. I'm a French horn player and I don't want to hear French horn in a drum corps show. I don't understand. I'm finding I'm not excited about DCI at all this year, and this rule change is apparently part of it. The idea of trombones on the field depresses me. Oh well.