Crush Collision is the Thursday night techno show on WCBN 88.3 FM, running from 10:00 p.m. to midnight.
Your hosts (circa 2013): Paul Simpson, Tyler Carr, Zac Nichol
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2012 marked the 25th Anniversary of the electronic dance music-based radio show Crush Collision on WCBN-FM 88.3.
Crush Collision is one of the longest-running electronic music radio broadcasts in the world, and is destined to one day hold the title. Crush Collision was founded in 1987 by Tom Simonian, who currently resides in San Francisco and continues to perform as Tom Thump. Tom recently had his house's foundation reinforced to support the weight of his enormous record collection. Tom was a guest performer at Detroitʼs Music Institute and was the resident DJ in the 1980ʻs at the University of Michiganʼs student union U-Club.
The radio show Crush Collison was originally billed as "dance music", where one could hear new Chicago House, Detroit Techno, Hacienda hits, alternative 12" mixes of club music, industrial, and eventually acid jazz. Brendan Gillen aka BMG was the next to host the show and to ultimately transform it into a voice for this new electronic music generation. The original music selection presented was industrial mixed with some techno; after a revelation following a trip to Buy Rite in December 1989 , the showʼs format became "techno". Techno, house, electro et. al. were played as these genres grew and changed monthly. The showʼs format was initially not well-received at WCBN, not yet understanding the nascent genre and music revolution, burying the show on late late Saturday nights, then Friday night for one season. In the early mid 90s Brendan Gillen was able to secure Crush Collisionʼs current home, Thursday nights at 10 p.m. on WCBN, 88.3 FM.
Crush Collision originally aired from 10 p.m. until 1 a.m.. The first hour of the show was called “Expansions”. The goal of this show was to share the inspiration of this music culture, and to give insight, when so much media, even important underground media simply didn't understand and Techno / Electronic Dance Music jornalism was still in it's infancy. Songs were played in full, with explanation of what they were, originally the show was ambient focused but evolved to focus on the history of the music and guests of great stature within the culture speaking candidly about their vision, inspirations and aspersions. A true education for the audience, and hopefuly an inspiration for future generations. One such audience member was Sam Valenti IV, who came on the show as a guest during "Expansions" and later built the Ghostly label with other guests Matt Dear and Tadd Mullinix.
Crush Collision's focus was "the sound of the underground" mixed live by increasingly excellent DJs. Focusing on the art of the DJ and trying to give an open voice to the ever expanding sounds, and attempting to document their evolution, Crush Collision attracted many special guests. The show functioned as a conduit to the scene, but also curating a sound and vision. Special guests of Crush Collision included Derrick May, Carl Craig, Richie Hawtin, Dan Bell, Rick Wade, Mike Huckaby, Theo Parrish, Shake, Claude Young, Basic Channel, Drexciya, Autechre, Mark Broom, I-f, Le Car, Adult., Patrick Pulsinger, Stacey Pullen, Rotator, Chuck Hampton aka Gay Marvine, Recloose, Alvin Hill aka DJ Munk, Eric Haupt, Elephanthaus, among many others. Guests performed live mixes, often debuting unreleased material, and were also interviewed over the air. Further voice was given to scene with frequent speaking guests, giving scene news, party and event announcements, regulars included Aidrel Thorton and Sam Fotias (now of Paxahau, the people that present the Movement festival in Detroit over Memorial Day Weekend). The lobby of the WCBN studios around airtime became a meeting place for the burgeoning regional techno scene.
In the end of the U Club era BMG & Jeffrey Hayner got together, excited by the quickly changing music scene, sensing a musical revolution or evolution, they banded together in resources (so they could have twice as many of those expensive import 12" singles) and formed the Mystic Masters of Time & Space, featuring BMG and Jeffrey Nothing. Centered from Crush Collision, the Mystic Masters played house parties, the U Club, and even the Detroit Rave debut of Underground Resistance (Jeff Mills, Mike Banks, Robert Hood), Panic in Detroit 2 in 1992 thrown by Made in Detroit.
BMG & Jeffrey Nothing hosted Crush Collision with Jeffrey Ø holding down the mix of the best and newest of records. BMG, in his constant search for new records, placed so many special orders at Record Time that he was invited to become the import buyer for their Dance Room, a post which he held through some of Techno and House's most formative years. By 1994, DJ Kalki aka Jim Pyke had replaced Jeff in the mix. The show took a dramatic evolution as Carlos Souffront moved to Ann Arbor and brought his experience and deep mixing skills to the air.
The sound of Crush Collision stayed consistent in the early 2000s, with a steady diet of DBX influenced sounds, Basic Channel / Mauritzio / Rhythm & Sound / Main Street, all forms of Mike Ink / Wolfgang Voigt, Ron Trent / Chez Damier / Prescription, and Robert Hood among the months latest music. When BMG moved on from the station in the early 2000s, he left the show in the skilled hands of Carlos Souffront, who had regular co hosts in Pete Leidy and Todd Osborn.
Crush Collision continues to bring the finest in electronic music to radio listeners over the air Thursday Nights from 10 p.m. til Midnight at 88.3 FM; and around the world, via live streaming on wcbn.org, under the able hosting of Tyler Carr, Zac Nichol, and Paul Simpson, students at the University of Michigan.