Wednesday, August 28, 2013


Thought It was time for another "live" breakdown of what is going on on the charts. It is 7:00AM here on the west coast on Monday August 26th. The ADD weeks are getting bigger and better and Music Directors are trickling back from summer break.    The first thing I do, and it saddens me to say this, is check Pitchfork to see if any of my ADDS got reviewed. IF they did and it is a good score (7 or higher)  I add it to my weekly email and use it to boost the record. But most of the time the impact from a good Pitchfork review is not felt until the next week. This week 2 of the bigger ADDs are reviewed in Franz Ferdinand getting a 5.4 and Dent May getting a 6.2.   So if I were working either of these I would ignore them and move on. Neither score will likely have an effect on the CMJ charts. MAYBE the Franz one but its not low enough to really make a dent I don't think.

When I asked everyone their thoughts for who will be #1 most added they said Franz Ferdinand and I think based upon name recognition alone they have the best shot but there are some other contenders to keep an eye on for sure. So now I head to CMJ to get the baseline for the week.

Well at this time there is nothing to reports via ADDS with only 6 reporters in.  So we will have to check back with that a bit later.  For the charts though something pretty interesting. Superchunk has the lead by one over Washed Out.  If Superchunk is going to do it, it has to be this week. So this will be fun to watch.

9:15 AM  Already talked to more people this week than last week at this time. A few newbies coming back to school, getting really excited about fall.  ADDS seem to be updated and so far we have 28 stations reporting. If we look at last weeks total adds of 217 it means we are looking at a very small percentage of reporters so we cant take too much from these results, But lets look anyways .

Okkervil River --3
Franz Ferdinand-12
Jacuzzi Boys--8
Deer Tick--7
Dent May--2

Well that is a punch in the GUT for sure. man...

Not much has changed on the reporting for top 200 so no update there really.

2:02 PM
Been a pretty busy day on the phone but CMJ charts are trickling in as slowly as ever. I wanted to get to  a point where we had 50 reporters on the ADDS side and that FINALLY happened.
At least at 50 can predict a little bit better what will happen

Franz Ferdinand--21
Deer Tick--19
Jacuzzi Boys--19
Okkervil River--9
Still Life Still-6
Kissaway Trail--5
Dent MAy--5

Crazy how that gap Between Franz and everyone else has gotten a lot smaller.  Nothing seems to be on pace for 100 adds but 50 is still a small sample size but we are starting to see 4 records pull away.

as for charting Superchunk holds a one station lead over Washed out
With Ty Segall and No age tied about 12 back.

Its 4pm here on the West coast meaning I am winding down the work day.  I will say I talked to the most people I have talked to a long time and It felt good to be busy. Wish the number of charts reflected that.

Tuesday August 27th.


Dodos review on pitchfork is a 6.8.  Thats not a number that changes anything
so now we go to the CMJ charts to see what happened overnight

We are up to 114 stations so we are on pace for over 200 reporting ADDS and that is nice
How much has changed?

Franz Ferdinand--21--55

Deer Tick--19--39
Jacuzzi Boys--19--48
Okkervil River--9--26
Still Life Still-6--11
Kissaway Trail--5--16
Dent MAy--5--25

So Franz is in First pretty comfortably.  I am not shocked but I did think the other records would challenge a bit more.

On the charts it looks like Washed out is pulling ahead with 77 stations with Superchunk at 73.  Its not over but looking a bit more like Washed out will take #1


Franz Ferdinand--21--55--72

Deer Tick--19--39--53
Jacuzzi Boys--19--48--60
Okkervil River--9--26--31
Still Life Still-6--11---14
Kissaway Trail--5--16--19
Dent MAy--5--25--36
Porcelain Raft-----26

Superchunk has a chance... this should be interesting

Everytime I check No age and Ty Segall they have the same number of stations. next week should be interesting


Franz Ferdinand--21--55--72--81

Deer Tick--19--39--53--61
Jacuzzi Boys--19--48--60--71
Okkervil River--9--26--31--36
Still Life Still-6--11---14--15
Kissaway Trail--5--16--19--21
Dent MAy--5--25--36--42
Porcelain Raft-----26---------30

looks like we have our top 4 set with a bunch in contention for #5

Washed out holds a 3 station lead on Superchunk 103-100
( although I do feel that Superchunk has a core lead so who knows )

Larger lead for Washed out and Dodos looks to have taken control of the #5 spot. 

11:02 ( 2:02)   

A ton  of activity towards the end. Will be interesting to see what happens when the dust settles 

I dont feel strongly enough to say Washed Out or Superchunk have it. Would not be shocked with either.  I am however leaning towards Washed out.. The last two times I leaned ( vampire weekend a few months ago and Washed out even a few weeks ago I was wrong so who knows ) 


I hope you guys all enjoyed the "live" breakdown. I think it is fun to show you what is happening behind the scenes. 

I talked to a few promoters that were surprised about Franz Ferdinand being #1 most ADDED .  I am not because there were still only 216 stations that reported ADDS so that tells me a lot of people just looked at email and and went with the name they knew.  The separation between 4 and 9 is only about 20 adds not a huge number really but the top 3 of Franz, Jacuzzi Boys and Deer Tick really separated themselves from the pack.

The real excitement this week came from Superchunk. One of the first charts I got in this week was from a huge station that had them at #1 and that started me thinking they had a chance. They even lead a few times throughout.   But in the end Washed Out held on with a pretty easy victory.

With Labor Day here it should become a lot more interesting week to week on the charts.  The last 2 years the number of stations reporting before Labor Day and On labor day jump up from the 220 range to the 270 range. Sometimes it happens on labor day and other years it happens the week after but we are in store for a nice jump.

Last weeks race for the ADDs turned into a race to see who could jump up the most on the chart. With Ty Segall winning that footrace and coming in at #3.  No Age is not far behind at #5 but I would imagine both are going to be pushing hard to take #1 next week. I don't see a way it is not one of them this next week.  I see a top five of Ty Segal, No Age, Superchunk, Washed out and Islands for next week.  I could even see Superchunk staying at #2 and No Age coming in at 4 but for sure a combo of those 5 records.

Thanks to everyone that chimed in on #1 most added predictions last week. All of you had Franz at #1 so well done.  I am not sure what all is going this next week aside from NEKO CASE and NIN but I am sure we will know soon enough.

As always be sure to follow me on twitter @theanimalarrg 

until next time. Thank you for reading.

Oh a late addition the CMJ AWARDS NOMINATIONS have started

share with me who I should vote for and why.

Friday, August 23, 2013

CMJ ISSUE 1311 Preview

While I will not be able to do this every week I thought It might be fun to take a look at what is going for adds this coming week and see what you, thought might happen this week for ADDs.

If there are any I missed let me know. More importantly please let me know who you think will be the top five most added

The Orwells (2)
Franz Ferdinand (2)
Dent May (2)
Okkervil River
The Dodo's
Deer Tick
Jacuzzi Boys
Shahead and DJ Supreme
The Suburbs
Leo Lydon
The Vernons
The Colourist
August Alisana
J. Roddy Walston
Kissaway Trail
Porcelain Raft

Let me know your thoughts at @theanimalarrg

To be honest I have no idea. Who will be back? How will "heritage" acts fare?

Wednesday, August 21, 2013


For those of you that do not yet follow me on twitter (@theanimalarrg )  you might of missed this on Monday.  What I found to be the worst use of a CMJ Official ADD spot in quite some time. If I were to of kept track over the years of every instance of the worst adds I could say this is in fact THE worst but It is for sure One of the worst.

1. BLOUSE Shadow
2. BROKEN SOCIAL SCENE Forgiveness Rock Record

Keep in mind this is for this weeks ADD week.   

Let's start with the fact they only added 2 records.  On top of that they added a record that is OVER THREE YEARS OLD 


Every week there are a bunch of stations that, for whatever reason, ADD old records. There were plenty of those this week. I saw one for Tera Melos a 4 month old record.   There are always a bunch for the records that went for ADDS the week previous as well as a bunch for those that are going for adds next week. Why? I have no idea.  As I have mentioned a hundred thousand times the only time ADDing a record helps an artist is when it is on the ADD week.  So while you felt the need to add last weeks ADD or next weeks it in fact helped no one. Not the Artist. The Label. The promoter or even your station are helped by this.  While adding a record THREE YEARS after it came out is way more asinine than adding last weeks add again, adding last weeks add is still dumb.   

I really would love to save this message for when more of you are back, as I know a lot are coming back over the next few weeks, doing ADDS can be a bit confusing but it does not have to be.   
Other promoters and labels have expressed the same frustration to me as well.  One of my label friends was tweeting about this earlier yesterday and I thought I would share their words. I like to keep things anonymous, unless they ask me to say who they are later though. 

" I think it's annoying when people go off add date (esp early!) but it's technically a suggestion and pretty industry-sided... The fact that a station adds on the add date is a professional courtesy, really. It's part of the deal you have with stations... And it's a largely unspoken deal, esp. for young and new DJs and MDs. So if they don't get it, explain it to them."

And maybe that is part of the problem.  Maybe ADDS have not been explained. If that is the case just ask any one of your promoters and I am sure they are more than willing to let you know the proper way of doing them.   

The reason I started with that this week is because more than ever each add week is decided by under 5 adds.  So If that stations that added Terra Melos, Broken Social Scene or Islands would of added an ADD that was actually adding this week then maybe we would have a different #1 than we have. 

This weeks race was, from start to finish, one of the closest I have seen. The biggest lead I ever saw by either Ty Segall or No Age was 3 adds.  It was clear from the start that it was going to be one of these two records.   What I thought was crazy was just how many people added Both records. With 217 reporters and each record getting over 100 adds. There were 116 stations that added both of them.  Only 38 stations added neither.  That leads just 63 stations deciding who was going to be champion. 
In the end Ty Segall won  33-30 out of those remaining ADDS.  Overall it was 149-146.  But both records getting almost 70% of the ADDS is pretty nuts.  

So where does that leave us for the charts. Clearly both of these records have a chance at #1 over the next few weeks.  The charts are going to start to change pretty dramatically over the next few weeks as stations gone for the summer come back and pretty much ignore a good portion of the records that went for adds in the summer and focus on new records.  So the newer records are going to shoot up the chart VERY FAST. 
We saw that this week with Superchunk, last weeks #1 add. They come in this week at #4 having debuted last week at #151. Now the question is do they have a shot at #1?  And how about Polyphonic Spree coming in at #6 from last weeks #25?   It is a fun question to ponder with both these records. 

We knew Washed Out was going to take #1 this week as they should of had it last week. So what happens now. Does washed out continue to get stronger? That does typically happen when a record gets to #1. Or because of the timing of the record does NO AGE or TY Segall try and push for #1 now.  And what about Superchunk??? So very exciting! 

I can tell you it will be No Age, Ty Segall, Washed out or Superchunk in the #1 spot next week.  

The question I ask myself now is can Superchunk fit into that window?  It depends on a few things. 
If Washed Out remains the biggest priority for the people pushing it I think it stays there. However if the focus changes, too early, to getting No Age up there will that open the window enough for Superchunk to fit in for a week?  It's possible but Everything has to go right for that to happen.  The wildcard here is that there are two indies on Superchunk and if they are on the same page the chances go up a lot.   

I said "too early" before because I think without trying No Age and Ty Segall could be both in the top 5 next week. But I don't think even with huge pushes they can gain enough stations to get to #1. So I would just let them do what they are going to do and then go for the top spot in two weeks.  However I would start saying "going for #1" because the more you say it the more people hear it and the better chance you have.   

If I had to make a guess for next week I would say Washed out #1 Superchunk #2   with Ty Segall and No Age coming somewhere in the 3-7 range of things.  Then in 2 weeks one of them #1. 

What do you guys think? 

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

CMJ issue 1309 Week 32

Last week I felt like we were at the low point of the summer. That we would only start gaining people back from here on in and the quality or records would increase.  I was half right. The records are getting better but there is no one around to listen to them.

This of course leads to some of the weirdest charts I have seen.  If you remember a few months/ weeks back we had that week where CLEARLY Vampire weekend was the #1 record. Everything pointed towards them being number one but using advanced calculus CMJ told us that in fact it was Phoenix was number one.  That is what this week felt like.

I want to say this as nice as possible. But any other time of year most of the records in the top 10 would most likely be in the top 30 TOPS. I really wish I could come up with an actual formula but I am willing to bet some of the records that have gotten to #1 would only be top 5.  Those that have reached top five over the past few weeks well I would bet they would be lucky to get top 20.  Top 10 records would maybe be top 30.   Of course there are some records that are just doing what they would do any time of year but really there are a LOT of overachieving records out there. So it makes it hard to really know what is going to happen on the charts.   Going into this week I thought Hunx would stay at #1 and Washed out would put themselves in a position to take #1 next week.

This is one case where I was right but... I really don't think I should be.  I talk to a lot of you out there about what is happening as it is happening and while this weeks chart was being compiled it really looked like Washed Out was going to be the #1 record. When Hunx and His punx held on to #1 most of you out there were SHOCKED.  We mentioned this briefly in the past but every station has a ranking and when you looked at the top ranking Washed out had more. The second highest Washed out had more. The third highest washed out had more. Usually that is enough. Now Hunx had more overall but only by 5 or so.  It really defied logic.  Calculus.  Magnets. I don't really know what.  But somewhere Hunx had enough to hang on to #1. This means that next week If there were a CMJ betting pool I would be tall my monies that Washed out would take #1.  ALL OF THE MONIES.

When I was looking at this weeks ADD week I though there would be a chance to have a close one. While the final tally was within 10 it did get as close as 5 but Superchunk lead the way from start to finish beating out Islands by just over a handful.  One thing that does get me excited though is the fact we had 2 record get over 100 adds.  This week 100 adds = 55% of all stations reporting adds so that is pretty good!  It is a good sign that better records are being added at radio. I know this next week we should see some more 100 add records and while it will take longer for stations to come back it does make our jobs a bit more fun.  

One thing thats hard this time of year is having records getting lost in the shuffle.  You have a bunch of stations that have been around for summer that nothing changes on and those are usually your core station but thats only about a third of the stations. The rest are coming back from break and deciding to chart The Knife or Daft Punk because they missed it while they were away or you have a lot changing over and bringing in a new MD. So if we don't schedule a record correctly it can easily be lost between Summer and Fall.  I will try and remember to go over some records that this happens to in a few weeks.  Because most of the time they are really good records that peak in the first week and then just free-fall, I would not be shocked if it happens to some of the adds from this week.  The next  million dollar question I guess is will Superchunk or Islands get to #1?

I say no. I think both have a shot and will get close but the timing is right for Washed out to get there and stay there for about 2 weeks and then we start to see the big guns come out.  This Fall should be a lot of fun with records from :  Ty Segall, Franz Ferdinand, Dr. Dog, Nine Inch Nails, Neko Case, Chvrches, Arcade Fire, Dismemberment Plan, Deer Tick, Man man, No Age ...and here is where it gets interesting. I have noticed, and other promoters have brought to my attention that so called "heritage artists" have been underperforming as of late.  So there is a disconnect from what some promoters think will do well and what stations are actually digging. Some of this has to do with timing of course but when you look back at the recent history you can see records from artists that have multiple #1's coming up short. A lot.  Flaming Lips, Tegan and Sara, Sebadoh ( while it was an EP I thought it would do better) Same can be said for the Replacements EP, The National, Camera Obscura,  The Strokes, I am sure there are others but the point is college radio is always changing and what "collectively" you guys thing is cool or hip or good is also always changing. I saw a Bad Religion record go number one, that would never happen today. Might It happen in the future? Yes maybe.

Well this week was fun and I look forward to more weeks like this. I also look forward to more interaction with you guys. So please hit me up on twitter at @theanimalarrg  and lets talk about what is happening at radio.    Also we would not be a community without CMJ so lets be sure to hang out this year in NYC. It is just around the corner and they just announced the College Day lineup!

thank you for reading. Talk soon.


Wednesday, August 07, 2013

This week in college radio CMJ ISSUE 1308 WEEK 31

August. Ooof.  These charts are so out of wack from what I consider normal it is really difficult to have a nice write up about them. This week we stayed below 250 reporters for the 5th straight week. If my records are correct we should start to see a return of station activity slowly going forward with the majority of stations coming back the week after labor day.  If anything exciting happens in this time I will be sure to note it but this past week, as I mentioned, the chart is just so weird that I can't reasonably talk about it without shaking my fist in the air and telling kids to get off my lawn.

We do have another #1 this week as I thought we might with Hunx and His punx taking the #1 spot away from Smith Westerns.  This weeks #1 add Washed Out looks like a good bet to be the next #1 record if it can, and I think it will, race up the charts rather fast.  The last few weeks the top 5 has not really been a predictor of a #1 record as the numbers don't really change from 5-15 very much.

So the recaps will be a lot like this until we have something more to talk about. Feel free to give me a topic or talk to me on twitter @theanimalarrg  Unless I am missing something there does look to be an exciting showdown in a few weeks between No Age and Ty Segall .  I find this a little interesting as over the past few months I have noticed more of a changing of the guard at Radio than I have in the last few years. Meaning "heritage" CMJ artists are trending downwards, not performing as well as expected,  and a newer group of bands are becoming the next new thing.   Now this could just be a result of the summertime or perhaps the well known bigger artists are just putting out dud records. But it is starting to look like a trend.  If you wait too long between records you can be easily forgotten at college radio and it is interesting to me what music directors are remembering.

Until next time!

thanks for reading.


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