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 Post subject: DCI Salutes America (Fancast Review)
PostPosted: Sat Jun 20, 2009 6:57 pm 
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6/20
Coming to you from Annapolis, MD via the audio recording workstation computer rig in my basement in Dansville, NY. Let me start by saying that the DCI FREE FANCAST stream of this evening's drumcorps performance in Maryland gave me exactly what I paid for (a decent stream with a few moments of buffering and glitching)... But, let's not complain too much about things that we do not deserve in the first place. I will say however that from the high-cam feed it certainly appeared as if there were only 10-15 more people at the show than were with me in my basement. Unless the lower deck was only open to a few BOA-type groups and everybody else was off camera in the upper deck... it looked as though DCI didn't exactly make a killing on ticket sales. There were only a few hundred, at most on the lower deck forward portion of seats.

The scores were as follows:

63.7 Colts 5th
67.1 Glassmen 4th
70.3 Boston Crusaders 3rd
74.5 Carolina Crown 2nd
75.3 Holy Name Cadets 1st

Colts "Fathoms"
I couldn't fathom it. It was a typical esoteric and abstract presentation. I will note, however that the visual package and general visual talent and presentation of the group was of a high calibre in terms of contrary motion and varied details of body movement (horn moves, turns, shifts, etc.). The program is just flawed on a competitive level in that it doesn't really engage the audience. And if it doesn't engage, it doesn't score. The musical package was unfortunately forgetable. I do recall the SOS theme (a musical rhythmic representation of morse code)... but that's about all I remember an hour later.

Boston Crusaders "Core of temptation"
This program should include a sticker notice for explicit material. A truly PG-13 program! Provocative... visual... and musically engaging. Now it just needs to be clean.

Glassmen "The journey of one"
Combining "Panis Angelicus" with Atari sound effects does not justify and balance out the use of Atari sound effects. I'm just saying...
Ok, they deserved their placement... and I think the only thing that is holding back this organization from the levels that they enjoyed in the earlier part of the decade is program design. It's the same flaw that the Colts' program suffers from.

Holy Name Cadets "Celebration and Conflict"
Wouldn't it be easier to just call this program "West Side Story"? Ok, so here is my theory concerning this program and why it will most likely contend for the championship (if not just simply win it outright). So GH spends the better part of the last decade pushing the activity to the absurdly estoteric realm of abstraction... only to 'punk' the entire field of competitors by throwing down a REAL, honest to goodness, drumcorps show with more content, presentation quality and difficulty than the last three programs from this organization put together. Sneaky... sneaky sneaky.
This is a great show. And they will do well... very very well.

Carolina Crown "The grass is greener"
The brass staff for this drumcorps should be paid twice as much as what they are being paid. This corps (as far as I could tell from the comfort of my own home) is downright fine, fine fine. Beautiful musical score filled with thick orchestration and complex counterpoint... contemporary visual presentation... and plenty of memberable moments (not as may as the Cadets... but certainly enough). They are going to be tough competition this year. I mean no disrespect by saying this... but as I was watching this performance the corps that came to mind was Star of Indiana. This is not to say that Crown is 'the next Star of Indiana'... because I believe that in their own right they are 'the first Carolina Crown' rather than a reincarnation of a great organization gone by. But as was the case with Star in the 90's... now seems to be the case with Crown in the early 00's They are very much a presentation of a serious style and mode of performance.

That's all I got. I'm sure we would all love to hear from someone who was actually there (if you are out there)... but I figured I would at least throw in my "$0.02".

Have a good evening!

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 Post subject: Re: DCI Salutes America (Fancast Review)
PostPosted: Sun Jun 21, 2009 7:17 am 
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For the most I enjoyed the broadcast not withstanding a few brief encounters with lagggggg.

I have found myself losing interest in drum corps over the past few years. There have been a few shows and corps that have maintained my interest because of their high level of performance and the maturation of their shows during the course of the season. Blue Devils, Phantom, Crown, Blooocoats (there are others). This year I found myself feeling excited that The Cadets were returning to bringing the joy back. Having said my diatribe, my humble opinion.

The Cadets having seen only via the internet, this show is Hopkins in your face...double tongue. For the complainers of voice over and amplification, I truly think this is a spite show born out of the Shostkovich (sp?) principle (without the sophistication or great melodies). He is thinking those who have complained will now rejoice and I will laugh. The show is plain and simply blah...mho. Nothing so far worth noting. No Z pull, notta, drill incomplete. Some recognizable melodies few and far between. I see Crown pulling ahead in a week or two.

Crown, well I like last years show better musically, but it has interesting moments I am sure will develop in time. Percussion seemed to rock.
BAC, I enjoyed more than I thought I would, but like the rest not worth commenting on.

Anyways, blah blah blah for and from me. I think the previous post is correct in that esoteric may be back. Maybe because, people who embrace the esoteric speak a language unfamiliar to me and that makes them feel special. I truly enjoy harmony and familiarity. I enjoy familiarity on an esoteric level too, if that's possible. I just do not get it anymore. There are thousands of pieces of music available, many never heard in drum corps, yet it appears to me that the designers spend so much time chasing the other side of that and force feeding it down our throats calling it art. Just don't get it. Phantom's shows over the past few years to me speak volumes, Cavies and the James Bond show awesome, I just don't get it. One last thought. If you have the Colts talent why not put a show (musically) together that people will remember you for, not one that they can't wait for it to be over. My wife..."I'd be willing to pay to see three great drum corps than pay less to sit through six or seven with fillers." I am there now too. I would not have paid to see that show lineup. Though I guess I did. My employer is one of the largest public school systems in the country, now. Their language is "Get on the bus..." because if you don't go along we will run you over (my words)...seems fitting to this forum now because the posters over the years have quit voicing their opinion. here is mine for what it is worth.


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 Post subject: Re: DCI Salutes America (Fancast Review)
PostPosted: Sun Jun 21, 2009 10:29 am 
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poyntafter wrote:
For the most I enjoyed the broadcast not withstanding a few brief encounters with lagggggg.

I have found myself losing interest in drum corps over the past few years. There have been a few shows and corps that have maintained my interest because of their high level of performance and the maturation of their shows during the course of the season. Blue Devils, Phantom, Crown, Blooocoats (there are others). This year I found myself feeling excited that The Cadets were returning to bringing the joy back. Having said my diatribe, my humble opinion.

The Cadets having seen only via the internet, this show is Hopkins in your face...double tongue. For the complainers of voice over and amplification, I truly think this is a spite show born out of the Shostkovich (sp?) principle (without the sophistication or great melodies). He is thinking those who have complained will now rejoice and I will laugh. The show is plain and simply blah...mho. Nothing so far worth noting. No Z pull, notta, drill incomplete. Some recognizable melodies few and far between. I see Crown pulling ahead in a week or two.

Crown, well I like last years show better musically, but it has interesting moments I am sure will develop in time. Percussion seemed to rock.
BAC, I enjoyed more than I thought I would, but like the rest not worth commenting on.

Anyways, blah blah blah for and from me. I think the previous post is correct in that esoteric may be back. Maybe because, people who embrace the esoteric speak a language unfamiliar to me and that makes them feel special. I truly enjoy harmony and familiarity. I enjoy familiarity on an esoteric level too, if that's possible. I just do not get it anymore. There are thousands of pieces of music available, many never heard in drum corps, yet it appears to me that the designers spend so much time chasing the other side of that and force feeding it down our throats calling it art. Just don't get it. Phantom's shows over the past few years to me speak volumes, Cavies and the James Bond show awesome, I just don't get it. One last thought. If you have the Colts talent why not put a show (musically) together that people will remember you for, not one that they can't wait for it to be over. My wife..."I'd be willing to pay to see three great drum corps than pay less to sit through six or seven with fillers." I am there now too. I would not have paid to see that show lineup. Though I guess I did. My employer is one of the largest public school systems in the country, now. Their language is "Get on the bus..." because if you don't go along we will run you over (my words)...seems fitting to this forum now because the posters over the years have quit voicing their opinion. here is mine for what it is worth.



You know... I feel your pain and I agree with all you say with one exception...

The Cadets program (and I am not a Cadets defender) did include a remarkable amount of melodic exposition and continous (non abstract) musical content ("Cool" was about as complete as can be and "in your face"). Now perhaps George does this in spite... but the true spite is found in an audience that is unwilling to enjoy it (when otherwise, from any other corps in any other year, they would). Concerning their placement in relationship to crown... perhaps you are right, that Crown could pull ahead in the near future. But... I would take note that the Cadets unfinished drill (a common situation for a first show for ANY corps) is still superior given the complexity and frequency of their "wow" moments. I mean, who really cares about seing a "z pull" when you can see a "what the @$#% was that!?... and why didn't anybody get killed doing!?". There are two schools of thought. One can have their corps incomplete and fairly clean at the start of the year (with the intent to add "wow" moments as they become clean enough for presentation (thus boosting the score)... or one can have their corps fairly complete and dirty, cleaning it as they progess (thus boosting the score).

I just say this in defense of the idea that a program does not need to be done on the first show in order to win the first show. It just doesn't factor in at this point, particularly given this specific situation.

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 Post subject: Re: DCI Salutes America (Fancast Review)
PostPosted: Sun Jun 21, 2009 1:23 pm 
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I have to agree with poyntafter about the Colts. When their show was over, I told my "drum corps novice" friend that the Colts are usually one of my favorites since they play good accessible music. This year, they missed that boat.

Regarding the Cadets, there were way too many glitches in the stream for me to get a good read on them. What I did see didn't do a whole lot for me, but then again WSS has never revved my motor like it does for a lot of other drum corps old timers. BTW - What's the deal with George Hopkins coming out on his blog and saying maybe the trend should be away from "theme" shows and maybe they should just lay it out there and play some kick arse music? And then he comes out and plays a show that's essentially all WSS (which is a theme in itself) and then takes that and lays it into a show title concept called Celebration and Concept. It sounds like more of the same to me, but from what I gather on the boards is that a lot of fans were praising this as a change in direction.

All in all, I was pretty underwhelmed and the electronics sound out of place (and I love electronica music!). I suppose I'm typically underwhelmed at the beginning of the season, so as usual I'll reserve judgement until the end of the season. In the meantime, I'm looking forward to hearing Crown's hornline live next Sunday and I'm excited to see what SCV has going on, I've read some good things.

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 Post subject: Re: DCI Salutes America (Fancast Review)
PostPosted: Mon Jun 22, 2009 7:10 am 
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Thanks for the reviews! :tup:

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 Post subject: Re: DCI Salutes America (Fancast Review)
PostPosted: Tue Jun 23, 2009 5:57 am 
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I'm watching more webcasts on fan network this morning.

Colts and BC I am still having some issues with but I think BC has potential. I think the music is a bit out there, and their use of electronics seems to just be thrown in to say they used them.

Crown. . .very creative. Horns sounds great, percussion much improved. They do remind me so much of Star in the way the show is programmed. Sorry, but it needed to be said.

Cadets. . .ahhhhhhh. Finally, The Cadets that made me love them are back. It may not win, but at least they will win or go down doing what they do best. . .play and move like crazy.

Will give more thoughts as I watch others.

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