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Pink Floyd - P-U-L-S-E CD (album) cover


Pink Floyd


Psychedelic/Space Rock

4.43 | 518 ratings

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Honorary Collaborator
3 stars There is no Pink Floyd without Roger, but...

...for the Vegas version of Pink Floyd (ie, The David Gilmour Band) this is a reasonably entertaining DVD for fans who never got to see the real thing. Like the latter day Grateful Dead or Rolling Stones, at some point during the stadium tours it became as much about cashing in and appeasing brand-starved fans as anything to do with vital rock/progressive rock. Albums of new material were simply product to promote during the tours, and to both fan and artist alike the new original material was barely relevant. In the Floyd's case this was especially true given the loss of their primary creative mind Waters, and yet even for someone who believes this is something of a charade, I admit that cashing in can be fun.

The show's first half starts in grand fashion with "Shine On." While I love the track, I already have disdain for the execution which seems to speed it up and beef it up, altering the very important dreamy subtlety of the studio track. This is a problem I have with Gilmour dating back to The Wall shows. I truly prefer the studio versions of the tracks because of the way Dave insists on altering the laid back Floyd mellow-vibe with more blues-rock bravado that to this listener doesn't work. I think he corrected this to large extent on the Island solo tour, returning his vibe from an almost 80s Dire Straits feel back to the Floydian realm. After a good chunk of post-Waters material which makes it glaringly obvious how impotent the New Floyd were at composition, they close with a predictable "Another Brick in the Wall" and a modest "One of these Days," with almost no spirit from the days of space rock. The lighting and lasers are beautifully done and add much to the scale of the event.

The second half features an entire performance of "The Dark Side of the Moon." This is more rewarding that disc 1 with Gilmour's velvety vocals and smooth lead guitar close to the mark, while the ladies on backing vocals do an amazing job with "Great Gig." It is so nice to see Rick Wright there enjoying himself and lending his sensitive voice to the Dark Side songs. "Money" enjoys a rousing version where some of the most improvised jamming occurs. The bottom line is this: how much you'll care about Pulse will depend a great deal on how relevant you find the post-Final Cut version of Pink Floyd. If you think it's just as good, Pulse will be a must-own DVD for you. If like I, you find the post-Final Cut Floyd to be a nostalgia act capable of delivering entertainment, but hardly a vibrant progressive rock band, then Pulse falls under the "good but not essential" rating.

As with Yes, Zeppelin, the Stones, the Who, and Genesis, here in 2010 I really cringe at the thought of more reunions and tours under these monikers of the past, with young accessory musicians shouldering the fullness of the sound, while the hype and recreating rock-show moments overshadow the very essence which made the important late 60s-mid 70s work so important. Call me a killjoy, I won't deny it, but I hate to see my favorite bands relegated to this.

Finnforest | 3/5 |


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