TOC Review - East Rutherford, NJ


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I usually don't post reviews, but there has not been many this year for some reason.

-Before the show

Bought tickets from YEA and thank god. The line for the box office looked to be 30 min or more at 7:25. I just walked up to the YEA staff and was in and out in seconds. Was in the cheep seats tonight as I brought a group of 6 new folks out and didn't want them spending a ton. We were 30 rows back on the 10 yard line on side 1 - obviously a non-ideal advantage point, but we had plenty of fun as discussed later.

-Blue Stars

I enjoyed their opening min or so and was entertained by the last 30 seconds. The meat of their show was not super entertaining for me, but I do recognize that they have put a lot of effort into the isolated visual and music programs. Probably more than everyone else tonight, but just were not as clean. The newbies liked the guard and movement package that they provided. I have to admit the performance level that the guard is at was very good. I believed they placed and scored correctly tonight. Newbies had them in 7th or 8th.

-Bluecoats

First, yes pit! Getting in on the visual package with some dance. Coming from BK in the darker years, its nice to see people pushing the envelope with more movement in their programs from unlikely characters. Obviously not exactly the most graceful or technically correct, but the effort translated to the crowd and was recognized by the show after the performance with an interview on the field. Brass was a notch up from BS in quality and volume from our perspective. Marching was cleaner and more uniform also then BS. Solid show solid sound. I had them finishing above SCV in 6th. Newbies were all over the place with this one. Some agreed with me as low as 7th while one really connected with them and had them winning :).

-Cavaliers

Definitely what I have gotten use to them doing in show design - so much going on you need multiple reads to understand the full GE potential. Drums I would have put in the top position for the night. Crowd obviously liked the gimmicky stuff, I enjoyed the story line and the brass book. Defiantly not the loudest group or the best sound quality in the brass, but had moments of finesse that were outstanding. Very solid and enjoyable show. Visually I can see many groups trying this stilt thing. It adds a dynamic 3rd dimension to the visual package and a variety in the overall movement that is going on all over. Newbies ate the cheese up with everyone thinking top 2, one thinking the top spot.

-Blue Devils

Had seen a lot said about them on the message board and would have to say that I can see where people are coming from. My personal taste is that I really could listen to their brass book for days and days. Yes it is esoteric and the visual program is a bit disconnected because of the movement of all the props, but I surprisingly enjoyed the sounds and some of the chopped up visual package they were able to deliver - it seemed very easy for them even though im sure it is very hard. It is just crazy how much talent this group has within its ranks. Park and bark subject - Yup they stand a lot for the 2nd movement. The discussion though should be about movement. I was prepared to look at this for all the groups because of the stank being thrown around here. My opinion - for the little that it is worth - is that other corps put slight - and I do mean very slight for many of them - movement in to cover these recovery or brass impact moments. A heal kick from phantom for me does add some difficulty in comparison to standing still, but lets be honest - brass players will have recovery time or low movement time for impacts. All corps do it. I can't believe I just defended BD - wow. Anywho, brass sound was top 3 for me tonight overall and probably top 2 in quality. GE wasnt there for me or the Noobs. I had them in 3rd. Noobs had them in 3rd or 4th.

-Int = Rain

-SCV

Let it be first said that I have more respect for SCV with regards to their performances and off the field class then any other corps out there. We did a lot of touring together in '05 and got close with their DMs while waiting for retreats and such. What a great organisation - I feel should be the standard for every other corps in DCI. Anyway, the show for me has elements that show why they are scoring as they are, but I think most people will have a hard time connecting with them. Visual package is solid on a individual level with lots of details going on. Brass was pretty quiet with average quality of sound tonight. Obviously a lot of demand from the visual package on them! Good crowd response at the classic vanguard moments. Good performers and best of luck this week! I had them in 7th pretty close to BS. Noobs had them in 7th or 8th.

-Crown

Ok, was over-hyped to see this show. Yes, best brass hands down. Yes, pretty monster visual package with alot of GE shoved into the faces of the crowd. Problem, no pit sound where we are at :(. No piano = music does not make sense. Good response between the 40s. Marching technique was cccllleeeaaannnnnn! Not super impressed with brass movement package. Drill was very well designed and effective. Man that brass.... I had them in 4th due to no piano sounds - so really incomplete for me. Noobs had them in 3rd and 4th.

-Phantom

What great sounds from the horn line, as usual. I think crown does have a slightly better sound quality and has more volume, but wow. Would love to play in a horn line with that effort in sound quality. Guard was wonderful and elegant. Story line was easy for everyone to follow. Just a great design and execution. I would like to see some of the guard movement translate into the brass more then the partner stuff they do, but I guess I am just greedy - always wanting more. Leg kicks are effective, just not for me. And yes tuba player, I saw you almost eat it on side 2 during your leg moment getting off balance :). Hope you clean that up for your DVD. I had them in 3rd noobs had them in 2nd to 4th.

-Cadets

Wow.... Yet another thing I never would have thought to say to a Hop group. Awesome, just awesome. I was prepared for another door on the field "great design" show, but this one actually does it for me. It is justified to me that they are getting this good of feedback. I think the ending is too long and looses the effect. I would like them to cut after the angel is there and the tarps are rolled out instead of going on for another 30 sec. Could def be different in crowd between the 40s. Brass has their typical aggressive and appropriate slightly bright sound. They get away with the quality because they all play uniform down the line. Always am in awe of their uniform sound from player to player. I had them in 1st. Noobs had them 1st or 2nd. Congrats cadets!

What a great year for drum corps. Had the opportunity to hang out with BK in Allentown over the weekend. Cleaning has commenced and the kids are working very hard and retaining! What a great show. Best of luck to all my friends on staff there and congrats to all the hard work everyone around DCI has done. Hope everyone has a chance to check out the field this year. It will be a memorable one top to bottom!

-Jason

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Nice review! Thanks!

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I don't know who was responsible for staffing (DCI,Cadets,Meadowlands or a combination thereof) but the stadium was not ready for this event.

They had to delay the start for 20 minutes because of people not being able to get in.

My wife and I were sitting in the mezzanine level.1 escalotor up and down,with 1 door to get to it.

We also heard horror stories about the concession lines.

What really hurt was that,beacuse of the late start and a short rain delay,they cancelled the Grand Finale.

I will admit I was not a fan of the T.O.C. concept,but we really liked the event.

The "preshows" in the stadium plaza and on the field were a lot of fun,as were the presentatin of the colors (loved the feamle guard uni) and "instant encores". Crown's "Karn Evil" was unreal.

The only diappointment was SCV.We were hoping for a "bottle dance" in the encore.

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I don't know who was responsible for staffing (DCI,Cadets,Meadowlands or a combination thereof) but the stadium was not ready for this event.

They had to delay the start for 20 minutes because of people not being able to get in.

My wife and I were sitting in the mezzanine level.1 escalotor up and down,with 1 door to get to it.

We also heard horror stories about the concession lines.

What really hurt was that,beacuse of the late start and a short rain delay,they cancelled the Grand Finale.

I will admit I was not a fan of the T.O.C. concept,but we really liked the event.

The "preshows" in the stadium plaza and on the field were a lot of fun,as were the presentatin of the colors (loved the feamle guard uni) and "instant encores". Crown's "Karn Evil" was unreal.

The only diappointment was SCV.We were hoping for a "bottle dance" in the encore.

I was hoping for Send in the Clowns, personally.Saw them play that in Allentown in the lot. Beautiful. Also of note, the barbershop quartet that entertained the long line outside the stadium, and the trombones who played during intermission. Crown really "Rached" the encore.Very nice.:o)thumbup.gif

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Ilive about 20 minutes from meadowlands, so I alllowed about 9o minutes to get to the show(thank god). I think the biggest problem with buying tickets was no one expected that big a walk-up crowd, plus that stadium is set up for season ticket holders, not on site ticket sales. once in the stadium, (sec. 241) I think stadium staff did what they could to deal with a bigger crowd than expected, for example opening refreshment stand on my side of mez. aafter show started. my biggest problem was extending intermission which (maybe) cost us the mass finale. othewise, a great show in a very good venue.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I was really glad that I was able to go to this show. I loved playing that show when I was in junior corps so try to support and go when I can. I thought all the corps were great and there were some dynamite performances for sure. Something's been bugging me though...I gotta say I wasn't a fan of the 'instant encores'. Some of them were cool but more often than not I found myself sitting there in dismay as the mystique of some pretty bass ### drum corps was rapidly stripped away by bando theatrics. Just my 2 cents, not bagging on the kids as I thought the shows were fantastic.

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