Straight Outta Athol: WFNX call letters return to the Massachusetts radio dial

The unmistakable call letters of WFNX Radio are returning to the Massachusetts airwaves. Again. But not the way everyone hoped for. Again.

A new station, 99.9 WFNX Athol, launched this morning, and it’s a “variety hits” format not too dissimilar from that Harbor shitshow that took over 101.7 FM two years ago after Stephen Mindich unexpectedly sold the Lynn-based terrestrial radio station and FM frequency. WFNX.com experienced a short five-month rebirth as an online station until it was shut down along with the Boston Phoenix in March 2013.

This new station straight outta Worcester County’s Athol is spinning everything from Tears For Fears to Disturbed. With some Bowie and JT thrown in because fucking just kill us all, right?

The word from RadioInsight:

99.9 WFNX Athol debuted Variety Hits “99.9 FM” at 9:00am. The station is now asking listeners to use Vote999.com to select a name for the station. The music mix on WFNX is VERY broad as the station debuted with:

Tears For Fears – Break It Down Again
Elvis Presley – I Got Stung
Aerosmith – Sweet Emotion
Alabama – High Cotton
David Bowie – Fame
Disturbed – Prayer
Huey Lewis & The News – Working For A Living
Foo Fighters – Big Me
Justin Timberlake – Like I Love You

99.9 WFNX (which claimed the call letters formerly used on 101.7 Boston) has been simulcasting WXRV since 2008. Previously it ran a locally programmed Classic Rock format as “The Eagle” WNYN.

WFNX 101.7 FM was an alternative radio rock station based out of Boston between 1983 and 2012. In those later years, I served as Local Music Director and host of Boston Accents; and during the short-lived run of WFNX.com from October 2012 to March 2013, I served as Music Director.

Here’s Athol on a Massachusetts map, in case you were wondering…