Alternative Resistance Emerges In Madison

106.7 The Resistance WRIS-FM WOZN The Zone 96.7 1670 MadisonMidwest Family Broadcasting has brought Alternative Rock back to Madison WI with the launch of “The Resistance 106.7” WRIS-FM Mount Horeb.

The station had been simulcasting sister Sports “The Zone” 1670 WOZN Madison, which has launched new translator 96.7 W244DR to continue to serve the market on FM. Madison has been without an Alternative station since 2005, when 96.3 WMAD flipped to Country despite being one of the largest college towns in the country where the format usually performs well.

The first hour of The Resistance consisted of:
REM – End Of The World As We Know It
The Killers – The Man
Beastie Boys – Sabotage
Walk The Moon – One Foot
Judah & The Lion – Take It All Back
Coldplay – Adventure Of A Lifetime
Bleachers – Don’t Take The Money
Phoenix – Lizstomania
White Stripes – Seven Nation Army
Lumineers – Ho Hey
Red Hot Chili Peppers – Go Robot
Jimmy Eat World – The Middle
Kings Of Leon – Around The World
Nirvana – Pennyroyal Tea
Vance Joy – Lay It On Me

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Lance Venta is the Owner and Publisher of RadioInsight.com and a consultant for RadioBB Networks specializing in integration of radio and the internet. Lance has two decades of experience tracking the audio industry and its use of digital platforms.

8 Comments


  1. Madison has had a long history with commercial Triple A (even if it wasn’t originally called that)–first with 92.1-era WMAD in the ’80s/’90s, then with WMMM. Between that and the longtime Active Rock format on WJJO, I think that commercial Alt locally has gotten squeezed out a bit. However, since this new format is on a station that’s co-owned with ‘JJO, there could always be some helpful tweaks made at that station.


  2. What’s the station is purporting to “resist” exactly? If the name is a nod to politics from any end of any spectrum, not a good idea as it could drive away 40% of the audience from whatever direction. Note that both neoliberals and libertarian conservatives have adopted the term as their own in recent months/years. What’s wrong with “106.7 The Buzz” or “Mad Radio 106.7.” Branding 101.


  3. I’d add they’re not “resisting” the staid, bland, vanilla, males-who-don’t-sound-like-males sound of commercial alternative in 2017.

    Whatever happened to the format that would play today’s equivalent of Aimee Mann, White Zombie, Fountains of Wayne, Garbage, Refreshments in the same set. Not even asking for today’s equivalent of Throwing Muses, Pixies, Black Uhuru, Bad Brains, Sonic Youth, Husker Du, Minutemen – but just something – anything – interesting. Come to think of it, not even asking for that. Commercial’s gonna commercial and that’s all ok. Plenty of ways to get good music without relying on old fashioned, outdated, outmoded forever “radio.”


  4. A final thought is that it is nice that the format, however flawed I may feel it is today, has finally returned to Madison.

    The old sound of Mad Radio was something to behold, with a mix of wildly divergent sounds including dance music and hip hop interspersed between hard rock, alt rock, singer songwriter alternative and , well, you name it.

    But this is better than nothing for the commercial airwaves in that region. A long time coming.


  5. Mid-West Family may have issued a release yesterday (Wednesday) that fills in some of the blanks about the launch, as All Access, Inside Radio, RAMP, and now WISC-TV all have similar, quote-filled stories. Among the tidbits: The PD is Randy Hawke, who already handles the aforementioned ‘JJO. The logo’s color scheme is a deliberate reference to the city of Madison’s flag; meanwhile, Mr. Hawke specifically references the city’s longstanding nickname of “77 square miles surrounded by reality” in explaining the “Resistance” branding. (Ironically, the signal is a rimshot to the west, so that the “reality” is covered better.) At launch, there may have already been some related Alexa skills (along with the usual mobile apps). And finally, the station is apparently using what’s described as “an EKG-style meter” for supposedly real-time listener feedback on individual songs.

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