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Pulse Engine - Polarised

Pulse Engine - PolarisedStereotypes are often associated with kinds of music; folkies are bearded real ale swillers with fingers in ear; proggies are, to quote an acquaintance of mine, boy scouts with ashtrays; and lovers of drum and bass are brainless low-lifes with baseball caps driving about in miniature cars fitted with power-sapping amplification which annoys everyone within earshot.

Pulse Engine have shattered that last generalisation with Polarised, a 13 track CD of drum and bass, prog style.  The duo feature Nick Cotton (bass guitar, vocals) and Andrew Booker (drums, midi, vocals).

This is not the drum and bass one would expect, the poor response of live audiences outside of London has proven that, as the music is really prog using real drums and bass.

Polarised has some serious prog moments, such as the opening track Inner Second, yet is also very ambient.  Excellent vocals, which remind me of those of Harry Skinner of now defunct UK band Manitou, along with some of the compositions, have an antipodean quality (no digeridoo here, but it wouldn't be out of place).

It is so easy to forget momentarily that the main instrumentation is only drums and bass guitar as the sound is so full and varied.  Take Interrupt, ideal driving music if you like heavy fast-moving rock when motoring.  Then there is a Jon Anderson style with Synchronise Day, clean, crisp but also warm. On the more ambient side of things, Happiest Ending gently caresses the grey matter.

I have no doubt that the band would go down well at Glastonbury to a more general audience, their music will be best appreciated in the progressive arena (in the UK think Whitchurch, Classic Rock Society, Robin2, ProgSfest etc.).  Check out the Pulse Engine website (link below) to listen to samples or get a copy of Polarised for the bargain price of eight of out English pounds.  Nice!

Jem Jedrzejewski

Pulse Engine


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