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2021 BOA Austin (Sept. 25)


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1 hour ago, shaggy said:

I just watched a video of round rock from yesterday. I am really impressed, I dont think they have sounded this good this early maybe since 2015 when they would've won BOA Austin without a penalty. I don't think they can beat anyone in the top 4 but really 5th or 6th seems like there spot to lose. I was especially impressed when I rewatched videos from this time in 2019 and the improvement is dramatic. The band already sounds very balanced and the only thing that I could see being a problem is the drill. There is about 3 minutes of show on the field rn but It seems like the drill they have added since mid august is already relatively clean and the music sounds as good as the beginning. 

I agree. I decided to make the trip up to Belton to watch them at the fb game. Missing a season of competitive marching has not had a negative impact on them at all.

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On 8/30/2021 at 4:42 PM, LeanderMomma said:

You can give me your honest impression of the band. I think Leander is about half the size they were. Not doing anything last fall really hurt their numbers. ?

Did you get a good reading on both of these bands? Want to share any of your opinions?

I saw a recording after-the-fact of VR. That show is visually dirty at this time and there are a lot of musical quirks but WOW is that drill and music HARD!! Although we probably won't see it in 3 weeks, it will be magical if they can clean that to their usual standard by the time they reach Indy.

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1 hour ago, ioncewaslost said:

Did you get a good reading on both of these bands? Want to share any of your opinions?

I saw a recording after-the-fact of VR. That show is visually dirty at this time and there are a lot of musical quirks but WOW is that drill and music HARD!! Although we probably won't see it in 3 weeks, it will be magical if they can clean that to their usual standard by the time they reach Indy.

I did gain some insight and was able to watch both bands. I still don’t know what to fully expect from Leander. They do look a bit smaller, yet more promising than I first thought. Vista has an ambitious book for sure. Don’t worry tho, they WILL get it cleaned up and they will perform the heck out of it later this season. I still look for VR to be in the medal hunts all season long. 
 

Also, after seeing CTJ this past week, I am now thinking they take BOA Austin. But it’s a crapshoot at this point trying to predict this thing!

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1 hour ago, natertater21000 said:

Finally found a video of Vista, I didn't realize they were playing Barber's first symphony! That's my all time favorite piece of music and I really like the arrangement they're using. Very ambitious but I have no doubt that they'll pull it off.

The Barber is great, but the Sarcasms drum break is MONEY. Can’t wait for that to clean up.

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The show is definitely a bit of a hot mess at the moment, but Vista Ridge's music and visual programs are generating a lot of excitement for me. Very very difficult stuff to attempt during a pandemic season -- any season, really. If they can clean it to an acceptable level, they'll do great.

I'm noticing a lot of groups are producing uncharacteristically splatty, unfocused sounds this year. Like, watching Homestead, I immediately thought, "This is a group trying to do 'Texas loud', but blowing past the point of good sounds." But then I watched several excellent groups from Texas with the same (or similar) problem. A lot of energy, but not a lot of control. I can only guess it's related to pandemic rebuilding. That's not to say the shows are bad. Just a bit.... off.

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10 minutes ago, Rubisco said:

I'm noticing a lot of groups are producing uncharacteristically splatty, unfocused sounds this year. Like, watching Homestead, I immediately thought, "This is a group trying to do 'Texas loud', but blowing past the point of good sounds." But then I watched several excellent groups from Texas with the same (or similar) problem. A lot of energy, but not a lot of control. I can only guess it's related to pandemic rebuilding. That's not to say the shows are bad. Just a bit.... off.

I'm hearing a lot of this too, and part of me is hoping it's just our reliance on audio built for football games early in the year (IE the exception to this has been Vandy, but they have pretty professional recordings). However, there likely will be more rough edges than usual as everyone gets used to marching and playing again. I think endurance will also have to be something that is built up again, as even schools that did compete last year had shorter, watered down shows (with a few exceptions). I think the progress between early season regionals and SA/Indy for many groups will be quite impressive. 

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Predictions based on things I've heard + some speculation 

1. CTJ - Coming off the most normal season and winning a weird 6A State, I expect them to win in convincing fashion like they did in 2017 especially after what I have heard of their show
2. Vandegrift - reigning grand nats champion, easily could end up at 1st like in 2019 but their show seems a bit lighter than in 2019
3. Vista Ridge - haven't heard a lot about this band except that their show is really hard which might make getting higher than 3rd hard for them but could help them out at grand nats if they can peak late
4. Leander - Out of the clear top 4 here I think leander is clearly in 4th. I don't really like their show and their band looks noticeably smaller. I would prefer if I was wrong about this tho because the theme seems cool but the music seems boring
5. Cedar Ridge - Cedar ridge sounds as good as any year but I'm still not sure about them due to a huge drop in size. I have them at 5th just because round rock hasnt done well at austin recently
6. Round Rock - From what I saw of their show they could easily return to their 2013-2017 run where the medaled almost every year. The music sounds well put together already and their guard is much improved
7. Cedar Park - I have heard absolutely nothing about cedar park this year but considering they got 5th last year over cedar ridge I expect them to do well
8. Westwood - I expect the most improved band of 2019 to continue that path and hopefully push for a spot in SA finals(which should be easier this year without flomo or bell attending)
9. Bowie
10. Hendrickson - I don't expect them to be worse than in 2019. Im not sure what is going on with the director change but I think they are due for some positive regression 
11. Rouse 
12. Westlake / Lake Travis

Music - CTJ
Visual - Vista Ridge
GE - CTJ

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I've seen videos of Leander, Vandegrift, Vista Ridge, and Cedar Park now. IMO Vandegrift is the best of the four right now, but I really like Leander's music book and think they have a lot of room to grow. Vista Ridge's show definitely seems like it's designed to peak late season, so it doesn't seem quite as polished as some of the others. Cedar Park looks larger than they have been in the past, but they sounded a little rough in the video that I watched of them, so I'm hoping they'll be cleaner by Austin. I've seen only a short clip of Cedar Ridge, and while they sound good, they're a lot smaller than I remember them being, so I hope the pandemic didn't affect them too harshly in terms of enrollment. Haven't seen a video of CTJ yet, but I've heard only good things about them.

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13 minutes ago, justabandkid94 said:

Just saw the VR recording. Someone help me out.. am I hearing ET by Katy Perry layered into the opener? Can't figure out what the pop song sample is

I've been wondering what it was but it definitely sounds like "they don't understand you" from ET by Katy Perry!

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Understanding that football game videos aren’t perfect, one really interesting and quite unusual thing about Cedar Park is that the visual seems way ahead of the music right now—and generally more involved and complex than it usually is. That’s definitely not the norm for that program, but if their music catches the visual soon, they’ll be dangerous all fall. 
 

I haven’t seen Johnson yet, but I have to believe that they and Vandegrift are leading the field. There might be a decent gap before third, which seems incredibly wide open. Considering the normal contenders for that last medal, Vista Ridge is clearly going to be a slow burn this fall, Leander is rebuilding, and Cedar Park is getting their wheels beneath them in a new design style and with relatively fresh staff. On the other hand, Cedar Ridge is consistent, and Round Rock is obviously looking for a surge back to the top 5. Maybe higher! Should be the most exciting Austin in ages—same faces as usual, but much more uncertainty than we’re used to.

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1 hour ago, principalagent said:

Understanding that football game videos aren’t perfect, one really interesting and quite unusual thing about Cedar Park is that the visual seems way ahead of the music right now—and generally more involved and complex than it usually is. That’s definitely not the norm for that program, but if their music catches the visual soon, they’ll be dangerous all fall. 
 

I haven’t seen Johnson yet, but I have to believe that they and Vandegrift are leading the field. There might be a decent gap before third, which seems incredibly wide open. Considering the normal contenders for that last medal, Vista Ridge is clearly going to be a slow burn this fall, Leander is rebuilding, and Cedar Park is getting their wheels beneath them in a new design style and with relatively fresh staff. On the other hand, Cedar Ridge is consistent, and Round Rock is obviously looking for a surge back to the top 5. Maybe higher! Should be the most exciting Austin in ages—same faces as usual, but much more uncertainty than we’re used to.

I would agree - from what I have seen, CTJ will likely have a full show on the field in Austin as is their norm, Vandegrift will come loaded - I think that Vista Ridge will be in the hunt for a medal - Excited to see what CP and CR have and always excited to see what Round Rock will bring - should be an amazing event

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These early season contests are really sort of a crap shot trying to make predictions. Rouse HS show is coming along really well. It's been kept pretty tightly under wraps so I'm not sure anyone has snuck any videos out of it. I'm going to guess that Rouse finishes higher than everyone is predicting. I'm really curious to see CTJ at BOA Austin. It blows my mind that they might have a full show ready this early.  

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2 hours ago, propsquaddad said:

These early season contests are really sort of a crap shot trying to make predictions. Rouse HS show is coming along really well. It's been kept pretty tightly under wraps so I'm not sure anyone has snuck any videos out of it. I'm going to guess that Rouse finishes higher than everyone is predicting. I'm really curious to see CTJ at BOA Austin. It blows my mind that they might have a full show ready this early.  

they have had a full show at BOA Austin since 2017 - I expect this year to be no different 

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2 hours ago, LeanderMomma said:

I got another hot take for y’all. Westwood in the top half of finals. ? ? 

In my eyes 5th and 6th is really a race between the three rrisd schools, bowie, and cedar park. Idk if I would bet on Westwood to come out on top out of those 5 but I could see it. maybe. 

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Just posted the revised schedule at the beginning of this thread. New Braunfels and Burleson Centennial have officially dropped out of this contest. BOA Austin now stands at 25 competing bands beginning at 8:00 am with Stony Point and ending the prelims portion of the day with Vandegrift at 4:00 pm. 

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I always predict Westwood higher than they actually do for this contest.  I really like them, but they tend to not quite meet my expectations for them here, so Im wary of being gung-ho on them again.  They have consistently been one of the top non-finalist bands at the San Antonio super regional, though.

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As someone who is going to be competing in this competition (Go Wood :) ), I always like making predictions for these events. I don't really want to assume placements this early because a lot could change in the next few weeks, and to be quite honest, I'm more excited about getting to compete again, but my inner band nerd is channeling in. So here are my first wave of predictions based off of what I've heard from videos, friends, and other sources.

 

1. Claudia Taylor Johnson
They are the the only potential medal contender who had a legit competition year last season. With that in mind, I have also heard they have a full show that will be on the field, which I can't wait to see. Combining those two thoughts, I think this is their competition to lose and they won't disappoint.

2. Vandegrift 
Coming off their grand nats win, I once again think they will be at the top of the pack again this year. From what I've heard, COVID didn't hurt their numbers, which is an advantage for anyone and they will once again come out with a very musically and visually challenging show. 

3. Vista Ridge
I was lucky enough to see them in person at the Leander game and boy do they have a lot of energy. The show was still relatively dirty visually but knowing Vista, that will be improved. According to a couple friends of mine, they are more ahead then they've ever been, and with the addition of their ballad to the show I think they will come out with a very strong showing and start to the big year they have ahead of them.

4. Round Rock
I have heard very very good things coming from them so far. I believe they will come out with a lot of fire now that they have gotten used to staff changes and will set up a big year for them, in this case back into Austin, UIL, SA, and eventually grand nats finals.

5. Bowie
I haven't heard much about them yet, but based off their 2019 scores and knowing their history and reputation, I anticipate them to come out with a very strong showing.

6. Cedar Park
A historically great group, I think that they will bounce back from a relatively disappointing end to 2019 year in terms of BOA. They already look super strong visually and will only keep on getting better as the show continues to develop farther into the season.

7. Westwood/Leander

I don't want to reveal too much about what we're bringing to the table, but we are way ahead of our history making 2019 year and we don't plan on letting off the gas. The show is fun and entertaining and offers new challenges that I look forward to bringing to the field.
With Leander, we all know the unfortunate COVID losses that they are dealing with and it's super hard to predict how that will affect them. However, after seeing them in person, I can confidently say that that even though they're smaller, they are still putting lots of good sound on the field and I think that will still carry them into finals.

8. Leander/Westwood

9. Cedar Ridge
While they sound amazing, I have also heard that they are dealing with a little bit of a size down from previous years. However, they have a lot of returners and I think that that experience will help push them into finals. Again, super hard to predict but it's hard to imagine them not in finals.

10. Westlake
I heard one small recording of them and I'm super pumped to see what they bring to the field. It will be interesting to see how they will stack up with the local competition, especially post COVID shutdown.

Finals bubble: Hendrickson/Lake Travis/Rouse/Weiss
Anything could happen with these last two spots. I really don't know but I'm excited to see who will pull through.

Super excited to perform again! Cheers!

 

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6 minutes ago, itsjaredh97 said:

As someone who is going to be competing in this competition (Go Wood :) ), I always like making predictions for these events. I don't really want to assume placements this early because a lot could change in the next few weeks, and to be quite honest, I'm more excited about getting to compete again, but my inner band nerd is channeling in. So here are my first wave of predictions based off of what I've heard from videos, friends, and other sources.

 

1. Claudia Taylor Johnson
They are the the only potential medal contender who had a legit competition year last season. With that in mind, I have also heard they have a full show that will be on the field, which I can't wait to see. Combining those two thoughts, I think this is their competition to lose and they won't disappoint.

2. Vandegrift 
Coming off their grand nats win, I once again think they will be at the top of the pack again this year. From what I've heard, COVID didn't hurt their numbers, which is an advantage for anyone and they will once again come out with a very musically and visually challenging show. 

3. Vista Ridge
I was lucky enough to see them in person at the Leander game and boy do they have a lot of energy. The show was still relatively dirty visually but knowing Vista, that will be improved. According to a couple friends of mine, they are more ahead then they've ever been, and with the addition of their ballad to the show I think they will come out with a very strong showing and start to the big year they have ahead of them.

4. Round Rock
I have heard very very good things coming from them so far. I believe they will come out with a lot of fire now that they have gotten used to staff changes and will set up a big year for them, in this case back into Austin, UIL, SA, and eventually grand nats finals.

5. Bowie
I haven't heard much about them yet, but based off their 2019 scores and knowing their history and reputation, I anticipate them to come out with a very strong showing.

6. Cedar Park
A historically great group, I think that they will bounce back from a relatively disappointing end to 2019 year in terms of BOA. They already look super strong visually and will only keep on getting better as the show continues to develop farther into the season.

7. Westwood/Leander

I don't want to reveal too much about what we're bringing to the table, but we are way ahead of our history making 2019 year and we don't plan on letting off the gas. The show is fun and entertaining and offers new challenges that I look forward to bringing to the field.
With Leander, we all know the unfortunate COVID losses that they are dealing with and it's super hard to predict how that will affect them. However, after seeing them in person, I can confidently say that that even though they're smaller, they are still putting lots of good sound on the field and I think that will still carry them into finals.

8. Leander/Westwood

9. Cedar Ridge
While they sound amazing, I have also heard that they are dealing with a little bit of a size down from previous years. However, they have a lot of returners and I think that that experience will help push them into finals. Again, super hard to predict but it's hard to imagine them not in finals.

10. Westlake
I heard one small recording of them and I'm super pumped to see what they bring to the field. It will be interesting to see how they will stack up with the local competition, especially post COVID shutdown.

Finals bubble: Hendrickson/Lake Travis/Rouse/Weiss
Anything could happen with these last two spots. I really don't know but I'm excited to see who will pull through.

Super excited to perform again! Cheers!

 

Like your projections and thought process!

FYI; while watching the Vista Ridge practice this week I could tell that they are already lot's cleaner than last Friday.   Making good progress!   No half-time show this week to watch.  VR is playing Abilene in Abilene and only Sr's and leadership band members are going to the game.

Also looking forward to this contest, going to be so good to see all the bands live again in a contest environment!   Also will be good to see where everyone is at for this time in the season.

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