New On 2 (And surprisingly accessible)

The inaugural UK Radio Audio week couldn’t have been timed better.

Digital listening rising to just about over 50% of listening, Christian O’Connell’s
departure from British airwaves, and the UK’s most listened to station making
some rather big changes.

And from a personal perspective as a listener, they’re sounding very good.

The most notable being the double-headed drivetime/early evening
offering with Jo Whiley and Simon Mayo which save for a slightly shaky
first hour on the Monday has shown a lot of potential.

Retaining older features from the duo’s respective shows such as “Confessions”
and the “Taxi Service”, the newer items focus on the involvement of the listener
whether they be stating the case for “The Best Song Ever” or nervously
trying to answer quickfire questions in the addictive “End Of Days” quiz.

It’s easy to dismiss the show as a BBC box-ticking exercise following
the fuss over gender-pay, but if what’s coming out on air is enjoyable
and inclusive, as opposed to the solo-Mayo “Blue Peter On The Radio”
style show of previous, then that can only be a good thing.

With all the fuss over drivetime, the press appear to have overlooked
the much awaited late-night offering from Sara Cox, bringing back consistency
to the timeslot, and a surprisingly upbeat selection of predominantly 90s
and early 00s tunes, helping the show to stand out on the dial, within
a barrage of late night mellow music and/or love songs shows.

Coxy brings her lively personality to the full, encouraging listeners
to get “Shiftfaced”, with the addition of applause sound effects
to rival those of Steve Wright.

The listeners seem to agree, with one texting in to Thursday’s show
stating “I used to find you quite annoying, but I like you now“.

And good to see more indies having a hand behind the scenes too,
including on the new overnight show with OJ Borg under the eyes
of Manchester’s Audio Always.

It’s fair enough to post this review after the first full week,
though it’s safe to say that all new arrivals, if gradually, managed
to impress from day one, tempting further listens for the rest of the week.

And there’s still plenty of room to progress, with Radio 2 finally managing
to sound confident and brash, without awkwardly clinging onto older
and overly-entitled relics of it’s light and easy era.

Lewis Carnie should rightly be celebrating with a glass or three.

About Robin Blamires

I live in Margate and am interested in radio and music. Bipolar and ASD.
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