Tuesday, 12 June 2018

More Radio Gaga

It’s been winding me up again, the repetition of shit songs on a daily basis.  I am compelled to compile a list (always a sign of utter lunacy) of the worst of the BlandFM playlist. This is the kind of thing that HeartFM plays over and over again.  I don’t mean current chart songs or even recent music, say up to a year old, that’s what ‘pop radio’ should be playing.  Hearing Pink, Ed Sheeran, Rhianna or Beyonce half a dozen times a day is a bit tedious but not nauseating.  The trouble with BlandFM really is with the ‘oldies’ they choose to play, mostly catchy shite they may have been fun once, (in a pissed in a night club and thinking you might still have a chance of copping off with someone by breaking out some fucked up dance moves) but has totally and completely failed the test of time.  This might be a polite way of saying they play a load of old shit. 

The only thing harder than getting on HeartFM’s play list is getting removed from it and I get my ears assaulted by this selection of bilge on a daily basis.  Yes, every single fucking day.

Rap is a bit risqué for Bland FM but two songs have slipped onto the playlist, “Gangsta’s Paradise” by Coolio (1995) and “Yo Diggity” by Blackstreet (1996).  At least the latter has the benefit of Dr Dre on production but the former is a horrible rip off of Stevie Wonders beautiful “Passtime Paradise” from the classic ‘Songs in the key of life’ album.  One or the other of these tunes will be played every single day, that’s the Rap quota taken care of; there is no need to even think of any others.  These are two average tunes but they are safe enough for the easily offended.

It’s the same with Reggae; the Rasta and dope smoking thing is a bit scary for the brain dead listeners but a couple of tunes have made it on air. “Make you sweat” by Inner Circle (1992) is a truly dreadful piece of music and the passage of time has only made it seem worse.  To the uninitiated the song is exactly as bad as it sounds. The other supposed reggae selection is the abysmal “It wasn’t me” by Shaggy, which must be a reggae song because he has a Jamaican accent right?  Wrong.  The only meaningful classification of this song is; utter, utter shit.  It is nothing more than a novelty song about a bloke getting caught cheating on his other and coming up with an excuse/alibi that only a total fuckwitt would try to get away with.  However this one is only eighteen years old.  It must be a struggle for the HeartFM producers to find some nice reggae music, I mean there’s no one to choose from is there?  Apart from The Maytals, Lee Perry, The Wailers, Jacob Miller, Burning Spear, John Holt, U Roy, Jimmy Cliff, Bunny Wailer, Peter Tosh, Bob Marley for fuck sake and yes even UB40!!!!

As mentioned before there’s two tunes from Kings of Leon on the list both from the 2008 ‘Only the night album’.  One or the other will be played every single day.  I like this album but I no longer feel like playing it.  HeartFM is starting to affect the way I listen to things I like.  This is bad.

George Michael has a dodgy reputation with his dope smoking and penchant for sex in toilets with strangers but combine him with someone else and it will reduce the shock factor and he’s let on the list.  So we get either “Somebody to love” with Queen from way back in 1992 or “As” with Mary J. Blige (1998) and nothing else.  There is so much wrong with these selections; George Michael was a seriously good songwriter, both tunes are second class covers, nothing from the brilliant ‘Listen without Prejudice’ album.  If you’re going to play Queen then play Freddie FFS, to do otherwise is just cuntish.  If you’re going to play “As” then look no further than Stevie Wonder’s original on the brilliant ‘Songs in… ‘

Then there is a selection of so called “R&B”.  (Before I go on I don’t think any of the shit to follow is actual R&B, its cheesy pop/soul.  Otis Redding is R&B, Sam and Dave is R&B, Marvin Gaye…  I could go on but…) The ‘modern’ definition of R&B seems to mean safe poppy stuff, usually but not exclusively, sung by a black artist.

“Unbreak my heart” by Toni Braxton from 1996, not the beautiful, soulful ballad that the public actually bought but a hideous, clubbed up, soul-less remix that  really makes shit out of sugar.  This may not be on everyday but I have to endure it at least three times a week.

“Return of the Mack” by a bell end called Mark Morrison.  I can’t remember too much about him other than he was a quite odious object, was basically a one hit wonder (1996) and this annoyingly catchy waste of vinyl was it.

“Miami” by Will Smith from his 1997 album ‘Big Willie style’.  For Fuck Sake.  This is not singing, this is not rapping, this is talking.  Not just any talking but talking shit with a capital SHIT.  Then when you think it can’t get in worse they play Willie’s magnum opus in terms of crap piles, “Getting’ Jiggy with it”.  Another song that is as bad as the title makes it sound.

R. Kelly is on the list which is amazing because I’m sure he was involved in some kind of sex scandal at some point?  To be fair this bloke has made one good tune but obviously it’s never going to be the one BlandFM chooses to play, which is almost always “You got that vibe”.  What vibe?  A crap one.

Controversy.  No not the Prince tune, read on...  Consider HeartFM’s obvious terror of causing offence and also consider the fact you don’t hear paedo Gary Glitter’s music played anywhere, ever.  Music by suspected nonce Michael Jackson is still seen and heard everywhere, including HeartFM.  Come to think of it Jacko’s estate is probably still making a few people a pile of cash so probably not so surprising….  Nonetheless it is undeniable that the paling weirdo did find himself in unfortunate situations with children and animals.  Then again some of the music is brilliant but HeartFM tends to ignore this in favour of his white skinned era.  They do play ‘Black & White’ several times a week and it’s an OK tune.  The irony goes on forever…

Whilst on the theme of pop stars with allegedly dubious sexual tastes I’m delighted to be able to say Heart FM do NOT play anything by that cunt Cliff Richard.

Next there’s Bobby Brown who is mostly famous for (allegedly) abusing his wife, the former gospel/soul superstar girl next door turned crack whore Whitney Houston.  Bobby had a dodgy reputation before he met the lovely Whitney, you wonder what he means when he sings “Two can play that game”.  The song was crap in 1992, its dry white dog shit now.

The list of shame doesn’t end here, to attempt to catalogue everything would be pure masochism and I’m feeling slight nausea already.  There is more smeared dog shit by smug fuckers like Take That and Craig David.  Abysmal euro pop from twats like Ace of Bass (FFS), Roxette and Snap.  All bollocks, all torturous by repetition, every fucking day! Why?  It must be something to do with royalties, some kind of money saving scheme.  Whatever, its shit.

And another thing… Talking of radio.  One of England’s winter cricket tours, Sri Lanka I think, will not be covered by the institution that is TMS.  TalkSport apparently outbid the BBC and will be broadcasting with their team of… er… who exactly?

TMS with Agnew, Boycott, Mann, Tufnell etc. are brilliant, the show is perfect and the best sporting thing broadcast on any radio, anywhere in the galaxy, ever.  Talksport used to have Jack Bannister but he’s RIP so we’ll probably end up with Mark Nicholas (very good writer, slimy as fuck on air), Darren bloody Gough (former talented and lovable cricketer turned professional gobshite) and some random Cowdreys. No matter who they put out, no matter what they do, it cannot possibly be as good as TMS.  And it has adverts.  Fucking adverts!

It’s all very well the ECB getting money from broadcaster but all that cash will be no good if the public loses touch with the game.  Sky do a fantastic job of covering cricket but international games should be on free to air TV too.  With radio TMS is peerless, just don’t fucking mess with it.

England's No.1 rated ODI team played Scotland the other day and lost.  It was a good game if frustrating to watch.  England were awful with the ball and in the field then bottled it with the bat.  Fair do's, well played Scotland.

Monday, 4 June 2018

Another week, another test match

Another week, another test match, another one sided thrashing but this time it was England in the ascendancy.  How could we be so bad last week and so good this?  What was different?  We bowled fuller and held our catches, the commentators all agreed England looked "up for it" this week.  So why not last week?

What else was new?   Keaton Jennings only scored 29 runs but actually looked good in doing so.  He scored freely to begin which allowed Cook to just play his game without scoreboard pressure. Together they put on a fifty opening stand, England's first since Adelaide.  Put in context with what has gone on in the recent past, Jennings done very well.  None of England's batsmen gave their wicket away cheaply this time.

I think Mark Wood should feel deservedly gutted to miss out in this match after doing as well as anyone at Lords.  Chris Woakes took advantage of his luck with three wickets in the first innings.  Maybe a better 'horses for courses' bowler for Headingly.

Stokes was injured so little 19 year old Sam Curran got a game.  A future 'batsman who can bowl a bit' apparently.  He did OK, probably a bit better than big brother Tom a few months back.  It could be some while before either gets another game for England but at least now they're capped they won't be tempted to play for their father's native Zimbabwe.

England's two big stars of this little series both grew up playing cricket at Taunton.  Dom Bess could hardly have done better with his opportunity.  A maiden half century in the first test, followed by 49 as night watchman in the second.  He didn't look like a tailender, he looked like a test batsman.  He's been sharp in the field at all times and took a brilliant catch in the second innings at Leeds.  Then he bowled eleven tidy overs and finished with 3-33.  Joss Buttler done exactly what he was brought into the team to do, he scored runs with the tail.  His batting on Sunday morning was the most fun this England fan has had since last summer.

Pakistan done better than anyone expected in this series and it's a shame there isn't a third match to settle things.  I think it highly likely England would have taken the series had there been another match, like we did last year when West Indies won a test against all odds.  Pakistan fans would disagree, fair enough.  No doubt this latest Pakistan side is full of talent and the next time the two teams meet will be interesting.