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the skunks of los feliz
3.30.2005
 
Indie 103.1 used to be a decent radio station.

Not in the earliest days of the format change, when the playlist was like a hermetically sealed time capsule of a Gen-Xer's college years (all Moz, all the time!), but shortly thereafter, when they settled on a nice mix of old (X) and new (Modest Mouse) "indie" rock. It seemed, for one brief, shining moment, that L.A. radio would finally provide listeners with an alternative to the self-satisfied dinosaurs at KROQ, not to mention the bland whimper-rock of KCRW.

Alas, it would not be long before Indie 103.1 became a victim of it's corporate parent's aspirations of market superiority. The signs of a race to the lowest common denominator have been there for some time: The Mighty Morning Show w/ white-boy ska purveyor Dickie Barrett (also the perpetrator of the inane "Punk Rock Minute"). The slack-jawed mouth-breather who drools out the station I.D.'s between hits on the bong. The station's inexplicable fondness for the "supergroup" Camp Freddy. Giving Rollins a show.

So 103.1 jumping the shark should come as no surprise. It was bound to happen. Success breeds mediocrity. It's the American way. But the way that Indie self-immolated last night, the spectacular manner in which they shredded any remaining credibility, was surprising.

To wit: During the 7 p.m. hour last night, the station aired what was basically an infomercial for a certain Japanese entertainment conglomerate's newest handheld game console/DVD player/MP3 device (hereafter referred to as "Log"). Between short sets of music chosen by Nate, a suspiciously slick "contest winner", repeating loops of "Log Radio" spots, hosted by the execrable Carson Daly, ran incessantly. In these spots, Mr. Daly breathlessly extolled the virtures of Log ("it's better than bad, it's good!") in faux interviews with such luminaries as Tony Hawk and the aforementioned Camp Freddy.

That was the show. All Log. All the time.

Using Daly, whose fifteen minutes of fame were up loooooong ago, to host this garbage was insulting enough. Having this blow-dried buffoon repeatedly refer to Log as "sick" was just the icing on the cake.

Now, I'm all for makin' a buck. Indie 103.1 has the right to do whatever they have to do to keep the lights on at the station. But this kind of crass, blatant display of commercialism is beyond the pale. If you, as a station, are going to become home to hour-long paid advertisements, even as you promote yourself as being "Indie", then you deserve every bit of scorn that will be heaped upon you.

Also, on a personal side note, if the complex calculus of some demographer has determined that Carson Daly sells to the Indie 103.1 demo, then I don't want to be a part of that demo.
 
Comments:
I agree. When that morning show debuted I just shrugged my shoulders. When I heard Dickie trading cracks with none other than Super Dave Osborn? I dropped it from my presets.
 
Why oh why did they pick Dickie Barret as a morning host. That guys is beyond obnoxious and not very funny. As if his ska inclinations weren't enough to warrent a station change, we gotta hear his fall-flat-on-his-ass banter that isn't even remotely interesting.

And I totllly agree with the whole Camp Freddy thing, what the hell is up with that? A bunch of has-beens and wannabe's churning out leotard rock ugh.. Really guys, who in the world wants to hear, let alone see Camp Freddy?
 
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