A new radio station - KENZ, alias "The End," formerly KMXB "The Mix" - arrives at midnight New Year's Day with a modern rock format geared for an older audience.
Former KJQN music director Biff Raff is returning to Salt Lake City to program the station. Musical artists the likes of REM, U2, Peter Gabriel, INXS, Talking Heads, Counting Crows and the Police will air on "The End."Dom Casual will also return to the Utah airwaves as the music director for FM-107.5. He worked for KXRK before leaving the market a few years ago.
Other former X-96 personalities Jimmy Chunga, Andrea and Mr. West are also joining "The End." Chunga will be the KENZ morning personality.
"The End" will appeal to those adults who want to hear progressive music without the grunge rock bands of today or dinosaur bands of yesterday," Raff said.
Despite the new station, it will remain business as usual for Utah's other modern music station, KXRK (FM-96.3).
The new station will cater to an audience ages 25-34, older than KXRK's 18-24 target audience. Successful stations similar to "The End" are broadcasting in Denver and Austin, Texas.
James H. Facer, general manager for KXRK, agrees there is a market for an older modern rock music audience. However, he's not pleased "The End" is publicizing itself by hanging onto the coattails of his station. He also said KENZ hasn't stolen a sizable portion of his DJs away - despite its claims.
"We have more DJs than you can shake a stick at," Facer said. "95 percent of my DJs are staying here and are very happy."
Facer says his "Kerry and Bill" morning show is intact and that Andrea is the only full-time DJ that KENZ has taken away. Chunga was the X-96 morning show producer and Mr. West was a weekend DJ.
"I'm sorry to see them go," he said, explaining he'll be naming replacements for them soon.
Monarch Broadcasting owns KENZ, FM-107.5, with Richard Rees as president and part owner. Rees was the president of the former KJQN. Eric and Scott Slay-maker of the Slaymaker Restaurant Group are also part owners of the new station.
"This station is the culmination of more than 10 years of personal experience in the modern rock genre. The combined talents that this station has brought together is unequaled in this market," Rees said.
KENZ has also entered into an advertising partnership with album rock station KBER (FM-101.1). Call letters are pending FCC approval. "The End" is a reference to the station's position on the far end of the FM dial.