Sure, we have A Prairie Home Companion,This American Life, and Car Talk, — uniquely entertaining, all — but in large part these days, radio is merely what happens in the car once the CD player conks out.
But if you set the dial to WMPG (90.9 or 104.1 FM) on December 30 at 10 pm, you’ll be tuning in to a feisty programming reason to pull the chairs up close to the speakers: The satirical bonanza of Instant Comedy’s new radio show A Beautiful Day in the Fourth Reich — a cabaret-style collection of political spoofs on songs, ads, and other forms of social persuasion.
Written and directed by Dan Bernard, produced by Michael Townsend, and starring the members of Instant Comedy along with some special guests, Fourth Reich follows on the heels of the pre-war but prescient The Search for Bin Laden and The War Chest of Kim Chee. Some of the material of Fourth Reich has already been staged, as part of the Portland Short Order Comedy Co.’s Political Follies (which will continue in the new year, at the St. Lawrence). Its scripted "propaganda" encourages folks to consider becoming "Repubmocrats" in the imagined Fourth Reich, in which the Pentagon has a weapons blowout sale, and gasoline is worth its high costs by virtue of being scented, just like high-end coffees or bath salts. Listeners will also encounter plenty of song take-offs — including "Deport the Troops" to the tune of "Because the Night;" "Mice and Men" to "Us and Them;" "Sunni" to "Sunny" by Bobby Hebb; and "The Nuclear Bomb Song" to "The Banana Boat Song." There is also a spot for the "George Bush No-Support Bra."
I recently heard wise old Studs Terkel say on the radio that American politics had become "a burlesque," but without the funny part. Instant Comedy and WMPG offer a little relief, with lots of funny parts, on Friday night. So put your feet up, get out that neglected knitting or whittling project, and get ready to laugh as you get piqued.
WFNX could have been a country station. A message from the kid who voted new wave.
I love WFNX. I suppose I might be expected to say that, but that is really how I feel.
By BRAD MINDICH | December 01, 2008
WFNX pumped to carry its strengths into the future
Radio, it's rumored, is a dying industry, falling behind the new-media Zeitgeist like an asthmatic jogger.
By JAYSON O'BRYAN | December 03, 2008
WFNX is keeping it close to home
In a day when so much radio seems less and less local, WFNX remains in touch.
By JIM SULLIVAN | December 03, 2008
You heard it here first
WFNX has always been a maverick radio station.
By TED DROZDOWSKI | December 03, 2008
The results of the WePushButtons Awards came in just a tad too late to get them in the last paper, so here's a quick recap of who took home what last Saturday at SPACE Gallery.
By PORTLAND PHOENIX MUSIC STAFF | November 26, 2008
The triumphant second coming of Brainwaves
Before there was Pitchfork, Stereogum, Popmatters, or almost any other music site you can think of, there was Brainwashed.
By SUSANNA BOLLE | November 19, 2008
What's the fuss over the Fairness Doctrine really about?
These are scary times for far-right conservatives.
By ADAM REILLY | November 17, 2008
The GOP relied on talk radio to carry its water, but votes are worth more than ratings
Things do indeed look bad for their Grand Old Party. Actually, it's even worse than they think.
By BY STEVEN STARK | November 14, 2008
Impotent on the issues, the GOP turns to scare tactics. Be afraid!
The Republicans appear headed to a second straight national pummeling, which will leave it marginalized in the federal government and an increasing number of state houses. Many party faithful are already noting the need for the GOP to move back toward the moderate center to survive. But the conservatives with microphones are heading down a very different path — and their followers, who now dominate the Republican Party, are going right with them.
By DAVID S. BERNSTEIN | November 03, 2008
Reich and roll on MPG
Gone, mostly, are the days of gathering around the radio for express, focused entertainment.
By MEGAN GRUMBLING | October 27, 2008
Vivian Girls find fans, lose shoes
“Maybe over there? Try over there . . . ” The muffled voice in the background sounds defeated.
By MICHAEL ALAN GOLDBERG | October 08, 2008
TVOTR have maintained their special vision while drawing in new ideas and expanding their sound.
By MICHAEL PATRICK BRADY | September 16, 2008
Palin may rally the right, but she doesn’t make the cut
Welcome to Casa Diablo, Alaska Governess Sarah Palin. Oh, and, wait for it . . . she doesn’t believe in evolution. Jackpot!
By PHILLIPE AND JORGE | September 03, 2008
Alias returns to Portland for his latest Anticon release
Brendon Whitney — alias Alias — returned to Portland last year. He nestled in for a brutal Maine winter and recorded Resurgam, his first solo album in five years.
By CHRISTOPHER GRAY | August 27, 2008
Changes at WTOS
The rock radio station in Augusta that helped launch the careers of bands such as Civil Disturbance and Dead Season is undergoing major changes.
By DEIRDRE FULTON | August 05, 2008
Breaking news from the concert ticket trade
The Who, Panic at the Disco, TV on the Radio, Cheech + Chong, and more.
By GOING ON SALE | August 05, 2008
Maine's newest music fest begins Friday in Blue Hill
The first annual Shangri-La Festival, which will be held at the Fairgrounds in Blue Hill boasts an impressive lineup that spans generations and genres.
By CHRISTOPHER GRAY | July 30, 2008
His rough patch shows how the mayor’s office remains a tricky launching pad
Call it a case of art imitating life.
By IAN DONNIS | July 09, 2008
Digging into the Education Partnership-Achorn connection
Phillipe + Jorge were shocked to learn via Buddy Cianci’s WPRO radio show that Valerie Forti, head of the financially troubled Education Partnership, is married to Eddie Achorn, editorial page editor of the Urinal.
By PHILLIPE AND JORGE | July 02, 2008
Five new albums to soundtrack a passive-aggressive summer
In preparation for another three months of endless days and sweaty nights, here are five new albums to get you through the summer.
By CHRISTOPHER GRAY | June 18, 2008