Friday, May 16, 2008

The Spirit of Radio

It was my birthday a few weeks ago. That's alright, I probably forgot yours too. Anyway, the family all chipped in and bought me a Roberts Internet Radio; the WM201 for those who are interested. I'd never really explored the world of internet radio before but having a dedicated device that does not require the PC to be on appealed to me, and this particular model is fully stereo and supports both wired and wireless networks.

It takes a lot for a high-tech gadget to impress me these days, but I have to say this little box is the business. You register the device at the Reciva website and set up a profile of favourite radio stations while you're there. The next time you go to the radio, it updates itself with these settings to give you shortcuts to each of those stations. You can of course still use the radio to search for new stations by name, genre or geographical location, but using the web site is a lot easier.

I started by searching the rock genre, with particular emphasis on progressive rock. Amongst a generous selection of channels, one stands out over the others: the curiously named Delicious Agony. The first three tracks I heard were by Peter Gabriel, Yes and Kansas - all of which I own and could easily play myself if I wanted, but somehow hearing a radio station playing my kind of music was more satisfying.

There are some very wierd spoken-word stations out there too, dealing with all sorts of topics ranging from the paranormal to abnormal. Yesterday eveing, whilst trying to calm Oliver after a feed, I flicked through the kids genre looking for baby friendly music. I found a station called 101 RU Lullaby, which sounded promising, but in fact seemed to be broadcasting some Russian bloke singing about his cabbage harvest accompanied by a detuned harmonium. Since this had very little calming influence on Oliver I jumped to my favourites list and chose Beach House Radio, a Spanish station I stumbled upon that plays a mix of chillout, dance and electronica - not the sort of thing I'd normally listen to, but it's very relaxing and always seems to send Oliver into a blissful sleep.


lee said...

Hey, Lee from Beach House Radio here. Glad you enjoy the music, even if it's not your usual genre. All the best.

Jon Sandys said...

Ah, the wonders of the internet - type "Beach House Radio" into Google and there's me on page 5.

Still listening from time to time - I like the Roger Sanchez track "Another Chance" that samples Toto's "I Won't Hold You Back" - that's more my style ;-)