Published on March 7th, 2020 by gavin

LIVE: Yorkshire Regional Brass Band Championships – 1st Section


1. Unite the Union (John Davis)
2. Knottingley Silver (Kevin Belcher)
3. South Yorkshire Police (Leigh Baker)
4. Stannington Brass (Derek Renshaw)
5. Horbury Victoria (Duncan Beckley)
6. Yorkshire Imperial Band (Garry Hallas)
7. Marsden Silver (Andrew Lofthouse)
8. Wakefield Metropolitan (Martin Hall)
9. Lindley (Mike Golding)
10. Chapeltown Silver (Sam Fisher)

Best Soprano: Claire Jenkins (South Yorkshire Police)
Best Euphonium: Elizabeth Wood (Knottingley Silver)
Best Solo Cornet: Greg Timmins (Unite the Union)


Well, an interesting one from the 1st Section today. Some pleasant surprises on show! The last movement and the accoustics here in Huddersfield definitely caught a few bands, who didn’t quite adjust to suit. Principal Cornet players did generally well, as did Soprano cornets. It’s a tough ask this piece. Based on the 10 performances we’ve heard today, we’d go for:

  1. Stannington
  2. South Yorkshire Police
  3. Chapeltown
  4. Unite the Union

Dark Horse: Horbury Victoria


Band #10 – Horbury Victoria

Good opening. Euph/Horn melody flows well, just watch the balance with mutes cornets. There’s some lovely lyrical playing here. The balance isn’t always brilliant. As we move into the faster section, the detail can be heard. The band sound could maybe be a bit fuller. Just got a little untidy to end.

Flugel does well to start the 2nd movement. Again, just watch the balance in the muted cornet lines. Stunning cornet solo. Stylish sop! Horn/Euph works well. The build up works well. Well done Sop. The dynamic contrasts work well here. Just watch tuning in the upper register. This is a big sound, occasionally harsh. Soloists do well to close this movement.

3rd movement starts well! The steady tempo and lesser dynamic really allows the detail to come through! Good stuff. Ocassionally the balance is slightly out. The detail is coming through well. Just watch intonation in the louder dynamics. The faster section works well. Plenty of detail coming through. Great band sound to finish this movement.


A good last performance here in the 1st Section from Horbury. Lots of detail could be heard, and the dynamics worked well! This could definitely feature today!


Band #9 – Yorkshire Imperial

Steady opening from Yorkshire Imps. The melody has a good flow to it, just the odd moment of intonation. This feels a bit static in places for me, lots of detail coming through however. The progression into the faster section works well. Nice band sound to follow. Watch the balance. Occasionally becomes top heavy. Clean ending.

2nd movement starts well, just watch tuning Horn/Flugel. Principal cornet does well, nice style. Good effort sop. Nice round band sound to follow. Horn/Euph melody works well, just watch the balance. Just watch the tuning follow this, especially the upper register stuff. Well done Sop. Intonation could be better across the band. Nice flugel to close.

3rd Movement is a little untidy to start, but quickly settles. Some good dynamic contrasts and a good drive helps this flow well. The triplets aren’t always tight. Generally good band sounds and most of the detail can be heard. The increased tempo works mostly well, odd moments of insecurity. Good sound to close!


A disappointing one from Yorkshire Imps this. There were moments that worked, and some that didn’t. The music sometimes felt like it didn’t have a flow to it. Not sure where this one will place really, depends what the adjudicators wanted.


Band #8 – Unite the Union

Solid opening from Unite. Watch the intonation in the Euph/Horn melody. Good bass sound. The dynamic effects work mostly well. The transition into the fast section works well. Great band sound to follow. Good ending, plenty of detail.

Nice flugel lead into the 2nd movement. Watch the balance in the lower band. Nice Cornet solo. This works well. Good sop! This flows really well, nice and lyrical. Horn/Euph melody works well, nice and simple! Nice build up into the full band sound. Sop does well. Watch the balance to end, too much lower end. All soloists do well to close.

3rd movement is a steadier pace than some we’ve heard today. We can hear more detail. There’s a feeling that this wants to push on however. Don’t over-do the bigger dynamics. Some of the triplet rhythms aren’t always quite tight. This is good as we move through the movement. Lots of dynamic detail is coming out. The faster section, just a few loose rhythms, but this works well. Good band sound to finish the movement, just got a tad harsh.


A brilliant performance from Unite. Lots to commend. Again, the last movement just let them down. I think that they might just have done enough to get up there! Here’s hoping…


Band #7 – Marsden Silver

Solid opening. Melody flows well in Euph/Horn, just the odd moment of intonation. The detail is jumping out of the music nicely. Just watch the tuning every now and again. The transition into the faster section works well. What a bass sound! Good balance on display here. Lots of detail to close this movement.

Flugel does well to open the 2nd movement. Principal Cornet does well mostly. The underlying band is supported by this huge rich bass sound. It’s so good! There’s a nice flow to the music, perhaps it’s a touch heavy in places. Euph/Horn works well. The build up into the full band is effective. Good sop! Good full band sound to end. Horn/Flugel do well. Very bold euph to close.

Good start to the 3rd movement, but again the tempo is maybe a little ambitious as we’re loosing detail in those triplet rhythms. Tight band playing mostly. Well done trombones on the triplet rhythms. Don’t overdo the accents cornets. The balance has changed now, we’re loosing the moving parts under the tune. Be careful that the FF’s don’t become harsh. The triplets aren’t always even at the change of tempo. Good energy to close and a great band sound, plenty of bass!


A good account from Marsden. Some of the upper dynamics were a tad over-done, but this was effective. What a bass sound! Wow. Just the odd moment of tuning and the over-blowing may have hindered this one. Overall, a good show!


Band #6 – Knottingley Silver

Nice opening here. The flowing melody is well played. There’s the odd moment where the lines don’t match up, but this flows well. Transition into the faster section works well. A little loose at times. Good band sound however. Watch intonation in the trombone gliss. chords. This ends well.

No rest into the 2nd movement, this works well. Principal Cornet does well, the underlying parts could be a bit more expressive perhaps. Good band sound to follow. The Euph/Horn melody isn’t always together. The build up works well. Good effort Sop. The balance is slightly off in the full band playing, lots of middle. Good Horn & Flugel melody. Euph watch the tuning to close.

The 3rd movement starts at a good tempo, which allows for more of the detail to be heard, but not all. There’s a slight feel of frantic energy to this. It’s just on the edge. This flows really well, just lacks a bit of energy to give it that drive it needs. Watch the intonation in the louder dynamics. The triplet section moves a bit too quick to get the full detail for this section. We’re loosing clarity. Good band sound to close!


Another one that didn’t quite hit the mark for us. There was lots of good playing, but the choice of tempo didn’t always work for this band. We lost some of the detail and clarity due to it. Might be hard for this one to feature, but we’ve been wrong before…


Band #5 – Lindley

Loose opening to start. Euph/Horn melody flows well, just watch the intonation. Triplets work well in the front row cornets. The melody has a nice flow. Moving into the fast section works well. Watch the balance in the full band playing, we’re not always getting the full texture. Percussion is sometimes a bit too much. The ending mostly works well.

Good start to the 2nd movement, just watch the balance again. Principal Cornet does well. Some lovely sound from the band here. Nice sop! This is growing in confidence beat by beat. Euph/Horn/Flugel melody works well, especially horn. Well played sop! Nice big round band sound as we get to the close of this movement. Solo Horn is stunning. Good Euph to close.

The 3rd movement is going a bit too quick to hear all the detail. It’s a great sound, but we’re loosing the clarity. The dynamic contrasts work well. Lots of drive, good energy, it’s just a shame about that clarity in the triplet rhythms. Be careful not to overblow and make the sound harsh! The triplets in the horns mostly work. Lots of energy to bring us home. Big bold ending, but was borderline harsh!


Another performance that left us wanting more! It grew in stature as it went along, and the ending was excellent. That last movement is proving to be a difficult one for the yorkshire bands so far though. Half way through the contest, and it could still be anyone’s yet.


Band #4 – Wakefield Metropolitan

Good opening. Lots of details and the melody flows well. Balance works well. Good bass sound. The faster section has a good pulse to it. Loosing some of the detail as we progress through this. Lots to commend as we move through this. The close works well.

Nervous start to the 2nd movement. This is moving a bit quicker than other bands so far today. Well done principal cornet, good job! Just watch the balance in the full band sounds, especially those with mutes. Good effort Sop. Horn/Euph melody works well. Nice build up into the full band sound. Soloists to close do well. Well done Euph.

The 3rd movement starts well, lots of detail coming through the texture. Some really good band sounds! The rhythms work well mostly. Little scrappy in the trombones on the triplets. This is good as we move to the final section of the piece. Lots of detail can be heard in Horns/Euphs. Good effort Principal Cornet. Good sound to finish, just lacks the energy this ending really needs.


This was a good performance from Wakey Met. Just didn’t quite have the sparkle some of the other performances have had so far. Again, the balance was mostly good and there were some lovely contributions from soloists. Have they done enough to feature at the top?


Band #3 – South Yorkshire Police

Solid opening. The melody has a good flow. The little dynamic nuances work well. The Horn/Baritone line has a nice feel to it. There’s some really good dynamics going in. The faster section starts well, but maybe lacks a little energy. The balance allows for all the detail to be heard. Just the odd moment of intonation in the upper band. Nice close to this movement.

Lovely flugel opens the 2nd movement followed by a great band sound. Lovely cornet solo, so stylish! Sop does well. The music flows so well on top of a thick bass sound. Euph/Horn do well, just the odd moment of tuning. Great build up and well done sop! This is stunning, so lyrical. Full of emotion. What a bass sound! Horn & Flugel do well to close. Nice bold euph to finish.

Last movement starts well. Lots of detail coming through. Still, sometimes it could be tighter. This is good stuff! Lots of energy and the triplet rhythms drive it forward. It’s not too overpowered which is exactly what this music needs. Lots of excitement to close. Excellent close!


What a passionate account from South Yorkshire Police. That middle movement was sublime! We finally heard more of the detail in the last movement. This is definitely one to watch! Good stuff.


Band #2 – Stannington

Solid opening from Stannington. The main melody flows beautifully. Well done basses, great sound. The detail can be heard in the cornets. Great transition in to the faster section. Good balance, and a nice big band sound. This flows well. As we come down in dynamic, the detail is still crystal clear here. Good stuff this!

Good opening to the 2nd movement. Perhaps a bit overdone in places but nice all the same! Stunning cornet solo with excellent band support. Beautiful. Nicely done Sop. Euph/Horn/Flugel….just watch intonation at times. This is really nicely played, great band sound! Good sop. The balance is excellent and what a great sound. Stunning Horn Solo. Nice Cornet. Great Euph to close…

The 3rd movement is off at a good pace. Lots of detail coming through. Still, it could be cleaner. There’s always a good energy and sense of drive. This is seriously good. The triplets are pushing slightly, we’re just loosing that detail again. Great band sound to finish. Lots of energy! Maybe a bit overdone…


A completely different take on the piece this. Lots to commend! There were some stunning solo contributions around the stand. Again, that last movement just lost of a bit of detail and clarity that this piece requires. Is it the hall perhaps? Still, a great performance from Stannington.


Band #1 – Chapeltown Silver

Nice opening. Melody flows well. Basses could do more. Watch the balance, as the tune sometimes gets lost. Good band sound in the louder dynamics. As we move into the faster section, the flow works well. Just the slight lack of clarity at times. The muted cornet sounds are effective.

Solid flugel to open the 2nd movement. Good muted effects. Principal Cornet does well, some nice sounds! The band supports well.  Well done sop! Lovely stuff. Nice band sounds. Euph/Horn & Flugel works well. Great crescendo into the full band sound. Watch the tuning in the cornets! This flows well though. Good Horn & Flugel. Nice euph to close.

The 3rd movement has a good flow to start. We’re just loosing a bit of clarity and the detail isn’t always heard. Good dynamic contrasts. The balance doesn’t really allow the melody to lift from the texture, but it’s a great band sound! As the band gets quieter the detail starts to really work! Great energy to close!


A good one to open from Chapeltown. Lots to enjoy and there was a sense of excitement throughout. The last movement just lacked that real detail that we expect in this piece. Still, this has set the bar! And still pretty high at that…

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