The Pulse: The Pulse

“What kind of music do you like?” is the name of the last song on The Pulse’s self-titled debut album. What kind of music do I like? From listening to their album – this kind. The Pulse is a quintet featuring Jakob Dinesen on tenor sax, Mads La Cour on trumpet, Heine Hansen on piano, Daniel Franck on bass and vocals and Thomas Blachman on drums and vocals.

The album starts off with “Ballad of St. John” and it is a ballad indeed. Dinesen gives a Coltrane sounding tenor while Hansen offers up a Wynton Kelly touch with La Cour offering traces of Miles.

“Super Young Island” is a slow mover at a somewhat easy pace. Hansen is given a chance to lay out some chords. Bassist Daniel Franck follows the vocals lines in unison.

While there are vocals throughout the album, they do not overlap or take away from the musicianship these five have. The last song “What Kind of Music Do You Like?” is a fine example of what this quintet is about. Blachman starts out riding the hi-hat then a burst into a cookin’ beat by the quintet. The almost whispered what ‘kind of music do you like?’ is a subtle great touch followed by Dinesen blowing and Franck laying down a bass beat.

In the notes for the album, Thomas Blachman says “…it dawned on me, this band didn’t play time but pulse. Pulse is a collective hyper-organism, much more organic that time and a result of another kind of musical consciousness – very rare in the world.” Very rare in the world indeed, Blachman and his mates have their fingers on the pulse of what jazz could be all about. They are breathing new life into it without the thumping of a bop beat.