Another BAC Gillette Stadium Review


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Before I start please forgive my terrible spelling!

Even for early in the season, it was a spectacular night of drum corps.

Another reviewer said it reminded him of a regional to me it felt almost like finals week. How I miss the good old days (RIP 2008) when we would pull up to some massive outside stadium and snake our way to our seats. That very action would build excitement and expectations.

It would be great if this was a yearly event or even a regional. I love Allentown like everyone else, but it is in the middle of now where and a pain to travel to. And unlike Allentown, there was not large gap between the seats and the start of the field. Excellent acoustics at Gillette as well.

Onto the Performances

Spartans:

I was impressed given that this was their first show and it was complete. I liked the massive gate mid field that held the brass back at some point (thus the name of the show "Spartans at the Gate'. It was also heartening to see them with such a large corps. They had a large talented guard as usual but I believe had almost 60 brass. I recognized 'Ritual Fire Dance' as one of their first pieces. Having played that back in 80-81 I know how tough it is. Their brass sound was a bid muddled but they pumped up the volume and tempo at it's end. I look forward to seeing them on the 4th to uncover more of what is going on.

7th Regiment

Were really the Cinderella corps of 2014. They must of been so pleased to have made it to semi's. Their uniforms were my favorite of the night. Those bright blue jackets really pop on the field. Again another complete show that at least to me seemed to have more detail such as body work and show flags than the Spartans. Again, I look forward to seeing them tomorrow to get more of their show.

Troopers

When I heard the name of their show was 'Wild Horses' I must admit I cringed a bit because how can they possible hold up against Crown's 'Triple Crown'?. Well they can't at least not yet but to their credit they offered their on take of the theme. Like Crown, the guard wears horse uniforms and have white gates that are creatively used all over the field. The show seemed to sag in the middle. To my suprise the singing and staging of the ballad worked very well. The ending drill really suprised the crowd and earned them a deserved standing ovation. My freind could not believe they did not play 'Wild Horses'. I told her it was a good choice not to. After beating Boston they have dropped back a bit scoring wise but that really has more to do with Boston finally pulling it together.

Crossmen

Hate the puffy clouds and silly planes that look more like a dinghy's. This is another theme that has been done better before by other corps ( Phantom and Cadets). I do like the tarp at the front of the field that allow's the brass line to wail during the 'I'll Fly Away' ballad. Like the last several years the drill seems to stay between the 30's. The show was enjoyable enough but I would of had them further behind Boston.

Crown

Boy did they wake up the crowd with the opening chords of 'Beethoven's 9th'. Trumpet's are still straining a bit during the softer start but it was full force forward after. By far they got the best response of the night. The show is dark but it is so intense and enjoyable. Already there are so many finishing touches by the guard and the usual expressive foot work by the brass. One of my favourite moves of the night was when the brass formed a triangle in front of the battery as they started their solo. Sequentially each row of brass players turned and sat down as if in a concert. It will be worth traveling to Lynn just to see this show again. They will challenge for the top spot again this year.

Cadet's

Brass seemed to lack the impact that crown had. The opening really cooks. Lot's of crazy notes and crazy run's. The '10' theme is really not that interesting but I am sure there is lot's to come (10 base or quads perhaps). I loved the 10 French horns but they just did not register. Get the microphone out. The middle of the show sag's with to much standing around on the 50 by the brass. Some clever moves have been added but they need more movement. I was much more impressed by Crown's guard. Percussion was excellent as always. Finale of more of the same of the '10th' seemed reduntant. I would like to see something new. As usual the drill at the end of the show was crazy. Personally I enjoyed Crown and BD quite a bit more.

BD

What are the snare's doing on those crazy lifts? Not sure what they relate to the theme but it was impressive non the less. BD is basically picking up where they left off last year. The brass already is playing an intensely difficult book mind blowingly well. Once again there is no weakness in any section. Already the guard is executing clean 8'ts. The prop's are begining to make more sense. I loved the brass players sitting down and 'reading' during 'Children Will LIsten'. The Sondheim music was a little hard to pick out a times but on second listen I am sure will help. Why are then not going to Lynn? Now I have to wait for Mufreesboro to see them again ):

Boston

I am so glad I did not see them last week. I can understand the confusion in the audience when then were dragging around the prop's without the screens. Of all corps I think this show has the most to grow. Unlike last year you do not need to read three paragraphs to understand what is happening. And after the pig masks of last year the guard must be relieved to be so beautifilly costumed. I loved how the color's of the flag's matched the four kingdom's. I think we all know what is coming at the end and it will be impressive. They could be the black horse of the summer. I am heading down to the Esplanade now to see them playing with the Pop's!

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Great review, thanks! I notice that you left out Jersey Surf. Were you not able to see them perform?

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