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Monthly Archives: March 2015

Annie’s First Week In The New Job – Review

Evening!

9pm on Thursday marked the end of Annie Mac’s ‘first week in the new job’, as she kept referring to it throughout the week. This came about after a Mr Zane Lowe presented the 7-9pm slot on BBC Radio 1 for twelve consecutive years, and my God, what an awesome job she did.

Right from the very off on the Monday evening she was calm, cool, and overly collective. The perfect production coincided beautifully with her warm, Southern Irish voice and unlike Lowe, she let the show breathe.

Playing two tracks in a row at 5 past 7 every night is a brave move, but a smart one. When you hear this happen, you know you’re listening to a specialist music programme, as opposed to an embarrassing New Zealander rapping badly over a mediocre remix of a Big Sean record, which gets very boring, very quickly.

I also like the fact that the ‘Hottest Record in the World’ is played at 20 minutes past 7. This way, you’re not being teased about it for 25 minutes, and playing it twice allows the listener to really understand the track and come to terms with the fact that this particular track stands out more than any other played that night during the two-hour time frame.

annie

The little interviews are nice also. They’re not too long and they’re not too short. Mac really squeezes out everything she possibly can from her interviewee in order to make it more interesting. What the interviewee is talking about then makes sense when you hear the track and digest the lyrics. It’s very rounded, and very much concentrated on the artists in question. I think it was good that one of her first interviews on the new show was Hozier, as they are both Irish, and can angle their conversation on that to begin with. It might take a bit of time for her to get confident to nail the likes of Kanye West and Eminem, but she definitely has the skill set and know-how to pursue those big names.

The only feature of the show I would question is the session, or lack of it, from Maida Vale or R1 HQ itself. I think this needs to be included. It’s a vital part of promoting new music from already well established bands, as well as bringing in new bands to add to the archives, and giving them a slice of what its like in the professional industry. I’m sure it will be included at some stage but I don’t understand the hesitation, they should have just ran with it.

Most importantly, this is now a specialist music programme, as already mentioned above. No longer is it a self-indulgent broadcast, derived from quite a peculiar personality. I can predict getting down to the real nitty-gritty, and I believe music-lovers will be more than thankful. Keep up the good work, Annie.

 
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Posted by on March 14, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

Au Revoir, Zane

Hi everyone, sorry it’s been a while!

I would start by saying I’ve been exceptionally busy (which I have in truth), and that I haven’t had any time to write any posts, but quite frankly, the latter statement is a bit of a fib, so I’m just gonna move on.

As I’m sure you’re all aware, Zane Lowe has left BBC Radio 1, after presenting the 7-9pm weekday slot, (Mondays to Thursdays) after twelve years. He did his final show at the station on Thursday evening, playing the music that him and his team believe have defined the programme over the years.

As emotional as it sometimes was, with him pouring his heart out over his love for R1 and the music, with a key moment being Lowe pressing play on Amy Winehouse’s ‘Back To Black’, I’m glad it’s over.

In recent times, I’ve become quite fed up of the bad singing over the top of records, the dreadful Family Guy impressions and the self-indulgent nature he possesses. The other thing that really pisses me off about him these days is that he thinks he’s best mates with Kanye West, Jay-Z, and some of the best and biggest rappers in the world right now. Well, I’m sorry to be the bearer of bad news Zane, but that’s just not the case.

In light of the departure, I was having an interesting conversation with my tutor the other day, and we both agreed that his parting isn’t because of his age, it’s the fact that the audience can no longer relate to the man. For quite a number of years now, he has not been speaking FOR the people, he’s been speaking DOWN to them. It was the same with Moyles, and it will be the same with Grimshaw. Give NickĀ half a dozen more years and he’ll be axed.

However, in saying all this, I am thankful for what Zane has done for the station, and for music in general. I used the hashtag (#ThanksZane) on several occasions and tried to listen in live as much as he could, as I’m very fond of the kind of music he played. The man also introduced me to my favourite album in Nirvana’s ‘Nevermind’, by playing it out in full, with it being his first ever ‘masterpiece’, back in 2007.

To end this somewhat bipolar post, I’m going to say that I am very much looking forward to Annie Mac taking over the slot. It will give a fresh outlook on arguably the most important time slot with regards to new music on modern radio, and I hope it will embark Radio 1 on a new, exciting era of outstanding alternative music.

 
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Posted by on March 7, 2015 in Uncategorized