The Frequency : Every Thurs., 9:30am-noon. WKDU 91.7 FM
Even with the post-punk revival in full swing, if you're a college radio DJ playing Wire and Mission of Burma back-to-back, you may come off as an esoteric snob. Throw in some Mogwai and Godspeed You! Black Emperor, and people will peg you for a card-carrying member of the Constellation Records cult. Play a little Isis and Floor, and you'll scare the shit out of some soccer mom channel-surfing while driving through University City to pick up her son from college.
But you know what? Two Dead Milkmen songs in a row just might bring it all together. Even soccer moms can appreciate "Punk Rock Girl," right?
Okay, maybe not. But a Thursday morning on Drexel's WKDU is likely to give more open-minded listeners a shot of noise and punk packing more punch than a cup of joe. That's the raw power of The Frequency, the show Adam Hendricks has been doing for more than two years. An environmental science major, the 21-year-old student grew up near Allentown and came to Philly in part for school and in part because "I needed to get out of the middle of nowhere," he says.
Residing west of the Schuylkill and doing the usual stint in the sweaty First Unitarian Church basement has exposed Hendricks to a lot of neighborhood bands--the Low Budgets, Eulogy, Northern Liberties--that he'll handily shuffle among bigger and older names.
Hearing only the name of his show, you might expect some of the hypnotic electro and backpack hip-hop often heard on 'KDU. The name of the show was inspired by Jets to Brazil, although Hendricks says he hasn't really listened to that band in recent years. "As I got into more noise and louder stuff, I felt like the name kind of fit," he says.
Hendricks is also the station's music director, which requires sifting through about 100 CDs of all genres each week to decide what's ideal for airplay, as well as compiling the station's charts of most-played songs.
So what new stuff has him excited? "The new Melvins album with Jello Biafra singing is really good," he says, also citing the latest Nick Cave album and "drone metal" outfits like Mastodon. Hendricks has a knack for playing more familiar songs and then slipping in, say, a cut off an incredibly rare X-Ray Spex 7-inch. ("I'm a pretty avid record collector," he says.)
While Hendricks has yet to do the whole DJ night thing regularly at a bar or club, he's participated when the station has thrown after-parties for or provided music during certain shows at the Trocadero, such as the Bouncing Souls ... and the Dead Milkmen.
See how it all comes full circle?
ADAM HENDRICKS' HOT LIST
Return of the Last Love
Fri., Nov. 26, 9pm. Free. Khyber, 56 S. Second St. 215.238.5888. www.thekhyber.com
There's no question about it--Philly feels like a small town to most of its hipper inhabitants. Still, those faces about town can be damn hard to pin down. Take the DJ duo of sisters Darshana and Chetana Borah: When the twosome closed up shop at their Silk City make-out fest Bombay to Brazil, unhappy patrons were consoled by the fact the hardworking ladies were just seeking a vacation. Their names began popping up every now and again--Darshana's on Philly.com as a writer and Chetana's as a DJ at the occasional Sugar Town gig--though that still left their fans pining for the days of their steady, sexy-as-hell, worldly DJ sets. Take heart, local supporters. The ladies are back at last, loading up on the tropicalia and Brazilian beats that made them such a fine catch in the first place. Finally, a place where the who's-who can gather, gossip and flat out ignore one another as only Philly kids can. (Suzann Vogel)