review 17 Jan 12

Online Media Revival

Rising from the ashes of Belgrade’s first ever Internet radio station, NOFM looks set to continue providing the same services to the people of Belgrade and beyond.

David Galic
Belgrade Insight
Belgrade

The original incarnation, NRBG, New Radio Belgrade, had over 20 different shows featuring a plethora of musical styles. NRBG was on the air for a little less than two years, but the idea has been resurrected with NOFM, which started working in early 2012. You won’t find these radio programmes on AM or FM frequencies, however. NOFM, like NRBG before, operates completely online.

What makes the programming of this online radio station great is that all of them come from straight the heart. All those responsible for the programmes work on the radio station on a voluntary basis. Everyone broadcasting a show on NOFM is doing it for love, not financial gain.

Many of the best shows that ran on NRBG over the last two years will continue on NOFM, such as Patkazec (Duckrabbit), an alternative entertainment show for children that definitely deviates from the norm. You will also be able to listen to Noisecasts, which is led by long-time members of the Belgrade Noise Society. This provides programmes focused on alternative, abstract and experimental music. You can also get your fix of alternative and independent music from scene stalwarts Pop Depresija and Kontra-Bass, and from newer groups like SuperSize She Scum, who will provide an in-depth look at what is happening in a variety of scenes rarely covered by mainstream radio stations.

It’s not a strictly music-oriented station, either. For example, Radio Galaksija is a show focusing on science, cosmology, astronomy and other related scientific fields.

As Belgrade has a real problem with cultural politics and the space given to cultural projects generally, taking such a project to the internet was one way to avoid all the convoluted red tape that would probably be involved in starting such a project on a regular radio station in the capital.

That’s not all. The radio’s philosophy of being open to anyone who has a good idea and wants to participate has been expanded in a more palpable way; people are now invited to the station. Namely, the apartment that houses NOFM also moonlights as a form of underground café.

If you know how to find your way to the headquarters within the old and faded buildings lining Bulevar Kralja Aleksandra, you can visit NOFM during the evening and have some drinks.

Entering the run-down courtyard and following the stairs into the radio station’s headquarters leads you into a slightly dilapidated apartment that the radio station calls home. Here you can come at any time, but preferably at night, and get drinks served at reasonable prices by volunteer waiting staff. The apartment has three rooms with the makeshift bar in the first and the equipment that runs the online radio station placed at the back of the apartment with a view of the boulevard beyond its window.

The café has dubbed itself the Vega youth centre and it is meant to be a place promoting discussion activism and generally promoting societal and cultural projects aimed at increasing awareness and activism among young people.

NOFM and the Vega café/youth centre that houses the radio station are together a prime example of young Belgraders taking the initiative and manifesting ideas and projects on their own without the support of the mainstream media and the government.

The look of the apartment that houses these things may not be inherently impressive, but the idea that young people can come here to share ideas, learn from each other and at the same time have a drink and listen to great shows being broadcast in real time just metres from where they sit is more impressive than any gaudy Belgrade cafe could be.

Talk about it!

blog comments powered by Disqus

Premium Selection

politics-keeps-water-toxic-across-vojvodina-06-28-2016
28 Jun 16

Politics Keeps Water Toxic Across Vojvodina

The summer heat is creating new worries in Serbia's northern province of Vojvodina, where political quarrels are blocking a badly needed overhaul of sometimes toxic water supply systems. 

black-sea-flotilla-fiasco-worsens-region-s-tensions-06-27-2016
28 Jun 16

Black Sea Flotilla Fiasco Worsens Region’s Tensions

Bulgaria’s refusal to join Romania, Turkey and Ukraine in a Black Sea naval patrol has created new tensions in the region and has raised sensitive questions about their security priorities.

22 Jun 16

Balkan Countries Brace for British Vote on EU

22 Jun 16

Census Bombshell adds to Bosnia's EU Woes

Latest News from the Balkans

28 Jun 16

Bosnian Army Commander Oric Trial Stopped

28 Jun 16

Macedonian Protesters Predict 'Hot' Summer

28 Jun 16

Kosovo Customs Earnings Rise Despite SAA

28 Jun 16

Bosnians Shocked as Mujica Accepts RS Award

28 Jun 16

Serbia Ponders Brexit's Impact on Economy