Friday, 12 August 2016

Radio Review: 12th August

Old Radio 2 favourites continue to entertain

Written by Louis Barfe
Louis-Barfe-colour-176I heard recently from impeccable sources that Radio 2 management had been thinking about giving Brian Matthew his cards. One rumoured option was to replace him, doubtless with a celebrity who’d never presented a radio show before in their life; another was to bin Sounds Of The Sixties (Radio 2, Saturdays, 8am) entirely.

This would be madness. For one thing, it’s a really excellent show, with producer Phil ‘The Collector’ Swern and the listeners consistently finding superb obscurities to slot in among the golden greats. Then there’s the fact that ‘your old mate’ Brian Matthew is still the perfect person to present it. At 87, the brain and the voice are both still there, and he was the man who introduced most of these records first time round on Saturday Club. As long as he wants the job, he should be left to enliven Saturday mornings.

Meanwhile, over on The Organist Entertains (Radio 2, Tuesdays, 11pm), Nigel Ogden enlivened my evening by playing a truly horrible Mighty Wurlitzer version of Michael Jackson’s Thriller. I shouldn’t have joked on Twitter about Frank Renton following suit on Listen To The Band (Tuesdays, 11.30pm) with a brass version of Blame It On The Boogie. That’s just what he did.

Ogden redeemed himself, though, by playing the sublime Archangel by The Walker Brothers, featuring ‘The Duchess’, as the Odeon Leicester Square’s Compton organ is known. I’d be very surprised if that track hasn’t turned up on SOTS at some point.

Looking ahead, I had the good fortune last week to attend a recording of Alexei Sayle’s Imaginary Sandwich Bar, the comedian’s forthcoming Radio 4 series. Expect a full review when the show’s on air, but prepare yourselves for an astonishing Neil Kinnock impersonation and an equally astonishing impression of the cellist Yo-Yo Ma. No, really.

Louis on Twitter: @LFBarfe or email: 

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