No idea where to even start! Best show I've been to yet. It was a great experience and glad to take some new and old fans along with me! Found out my aunt, who I invited along was actually into DCI heavily about 20 years and fell off for family reasons. So this was her first show since then! I asked her how is it now compared to then and to summarize her 3 main points she said were, "More athletic. More lyrical. Darker themes." Interesting as these have all been discussed on here before. Alright now to get some quick thoughts down!
Crossmen: Probably never easy opening a show but they held their own and owned it as the first performance. Seems like a more mature version of last years group. My favorite show of the first half of performers.
Phantom Regiment: This group has seriously improved over the course of the season and I really liked seeing this show in person! They sound great and have really cleaned up. I would say they're just a small notch above Crossmen. Maybe.
Mandarins: This show didn't grab me as much as last years. With that being said I still enjoyed them and think they're right where they should be competitively!
Blue Knights: I would say a noticeable notch above the others. They appeared much cleaner which probably helped. A very mature show. My least favorite of the night but that doesn't diminish the talent this group has!
Carolina Crown: This is where the performance level jumped for the night. That opening hit is a highlight of the show for me. That ballad was LOUD. The music of the show is one of my favorites for the season. They were the first corps to get a majority of the crowd on their feet!
Boston Crusaders: Not to cause a stir but to me, Boston seemed louder and more engaging than Crown. Story shows have really become Boston's thing. I don't believe Crown should be 2 points ahead of the Crusaders.
The Cavaliers: WOW! I was not a fan of the show at the beginning of the season but this has grown into one of my favorites. That brassline is on fire. Major improvement over last year, just seems everyone else has majorly improved from last year as well.
Santa Clara Vanguard: I'll say the same thing I said last year about them. Their performance levels are what's driving this show. The show has grown on me but still not one of the favorites. But the way they perform make you want to fall in love with it. This performance hit another notch above the night.
The Bluecoats: Honestly this show just feels larger than life in every way possible. This is easily the best edition of the Bluecoats possibly ever. You feel every moment of this show. No matter where this show places, it has to go down as one of the greats. Loved the new ending. This show was a notch above the rest of the field (Totally unbiased opinion)
I'm probably missing a whole bunch, but I'm tired and want some sleep! Fantastic night all around and congrats to all performers on a great season! See ya all in theaters Thursday!