A. You will hear five extracts from a news broadcast. Match each extract with what it is about (A-G). There are two topics you don’t need.

A   business ___

B   crime ___

C   show business ___

D   health ___

E   sport ___

F   travel ___

G   weather ___


A not mentioned

B 5   C 2

D not mentioned

E 1   F 4   G 3



The results of the tests have come back from the lab and they were positive. We’ll have to wait until next week for the board to decide on how long he’ll be suspended, but most people are predicting that his punishment will be quite tough in order to set an example to the younger players. So we definitely won’t be seeing him in competition in the near future and he could be facing as much as a two-year ban.


Her nomination extends her lead as the most-nominated woman in the history of the Academy Awards. Her tally now extends to 14 nominations and two wins, and if she wins again in March, that will make it three. However, she faces strong competition this year, mainly from outside the USA.


After quite a chilly start to the day, tomorrow will be mild and overcast all over the country with the chance of scattered showers, especially later in the day.


An overturned lorry has completely blocked the northbound carriageway of the M6. Police advise motorists to find an alternative route if at all possible. However, the M40 is now clear in both directions. And delays are likely on the railway networks, due to major engineering work between Warwick and Birmingham.


A 45-year-old man has been charged with arson after a fire destroyed ten acres of woodland in Yorkshire last week. Nigel Slatterley from Leeds denies the charge and he will appear at Leeds Crown court at the end of this month.

B. Listen to a music expert talking and answer a, b, or c.

 Music can sound like noise to you if ________.

      a   it is the first time you hear it

      b   it is sung in a foreign language

      c   you don’t understand the rules

 Modern classical music ________.

      a   does not have rules

      b   can sound like noise

      c   is only experimental

 A lot of young people ________.

      a   have negative feelings about some kinds of music

      b   only like noisy music

      c   never go to classical concerts

 They changed the music in the shopping mall because ________.

      a   the young people complained

      b   they knew teenagers wouldn’t like it

      c   they wanted to attract more customers

 A lot of older people ________.

      a   never listen to pop music

      b   associate pop music with crime

      c   don’t like music with a beat


1 c   2 b   3 a   4 b   5 c


I = interviewer, J = John Sloboda

I   Why can the same sound the beautiful music for some people and for others just noise – and probably unpleasant noise?

J   Well, there are two main reasons. The first is to do with rules. Music has rules. If you understand the rules, you enjoy the music. If you don’t, for you it is noise. It’s just like a language. If you listen to a language you don’t understand, for you it is just noise. A good example is modern classical music. Most music over the last 500 years has been tonal. That means it has tunes, harmony, and so on, and those are the rules most of us understand. But when some classical composers in the 20th century started writing atonal music, they ‘broke the rules’ and for most people this just sounds like noise – until you learn to understand the new rules of atonal music. The same is also true of a lot of experimental jazz, where players are improvising.

I   And the second reason?

J   The second reason is the cultural associations that music has for us. A lot of young people, for example, associate opera or classical music with boring older people, a stuffy concert hall, music that goes on forever. So for them it is noise. There is a shopping mall somewhere in the UK where they had a problem with a group of young people hanging around in the afternoons and evenings. So they decided to play classical music instead of playing the usual pop music. The teenagers found it so ‘uncool’ that they stopped coming. And of course for many older people, when they hear any music with a beat, they don’t hear it as music, they just hear it as thump, thump, thump, and for them it also has negative associations. 

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