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Home arrow Older News Archive arrow Pink Floyd's PULSE DVD - official launch
Pink Floyd's PULSE DVD - official launch Print E-mail
Written by Matt   
Monday, 03 July 2006

David Gilmour, Richard Wright and Nick Mason reunited as Pink Floyd for the launch of the Pulse DVD at the Vue cinema in London’s Leicester Square last night (Tuesday July 3rd). The event was attended by executives from EMI, music journalists (including your very own Brain Damage!) and Floyd luminaries including Phil Manzanera, Dick Parry, and Guy Pratt, alongside Storm Thorgerson and Peter Curzon, who were responsible for the packaging and DVD design.

Pink Floyd PULSE launch
Richard Wright, David Gilmour, Nick Mason

A unique edit of Pulse, comprising Shine On You Crazy Diamond, Learning To Fly, High Hopes and the entire Dark Side of the Moon was digitally projected with a stunning Dolby 5.1 sound mix, very loud and crystal clear. Shine On You Crazy Diamond appeared markedly different from the version we’re used to seeing, with the long instrumental introduction augmented by previously unseen backstage clips of the band.

Pink Floyd PULSE launch
Tony Wadsworth (EMI), Wright, Gilmour, Alain Levy (EMI), Mason

To kick things off, as the band members arrived at the venue, a large pair of eyeballs was signed, along with three massive representations of the DVD artwork. These will be auctioned off for charity, along with a red Strat, again signed by the three.

Pink Floyd PULSE launch  Pink Floyd PULSE launch
Items to be auctioned off for charity

Following the screening the band took to the stage to answer questions from BBC Radio 2’s Stuart Maconie. Very relaxed, the band made plenty of jokes about themselves and the subjects under discussion.

Richard kicked things off by explaining what a joy it was to see Pulse, as he’d never had the opportunity to see their show himself. The new DVD gave him a chance to see and hear the show in great quality. David also mentioned that it is “fantastic to watch it like this, as it’s a privilege we just never ever get – it’s extraordinary the amount of stuff that’s happening behind us…”

During the screening, Gilmour had been spotted singing along with the music and even seemed to be conducting it at one point during Us and Them. ‘It’s in the blood, I can’t help it,’ he explained. He then revealed that he’d recently been to see the Eagles in concert and had sung along to all their songs too. All three claimed that it was strange seeing themselves in performance, amid jokes about the lengths of Guy and Jon Carin’s hair in 1994. Richard himself complained of having a bad hair day the day of the filming!

Pink Floyd PULSE launch
Post-screening Q&A (Stuart Maconie, right)

Inevitably, the discussion turned to Live8.

Gilmour: “Well, the performance was great and we had a wonderful time. One can only hope that it did some good; the jury’s still out I think, but I’m sure it was better to have done it than to have not done it.”

“I think it achieved certain elements of what was required,” Mason added, “and I think, as far as I’m concerned, the most useful thing was that I think it moved the dialogue on from this idea that rock concerts, or charity rock concerts, are there in order simply to send food parcels.

“I think a lot of people after that at least started asking questions about the politics of world trade and I think that’s enormously worthwhile and I also think, you know, we haven’t finished. I think Bob Geldof is particularly exercised at the moment about ensuring that promises or undertakings that were made, if haven’t been met - then, well, a fuss should be made. I expect we’ll have to turn out in Hyde Park again in a few months time if they don’t do something.”

The subsequent audience Q&A brought inevitable enquiries about future Pink Floyd performances. Mason and especially Wright seemed amenable to play further shows as part of Pink Floyd (“being on stage is just… wonderful”). Indeed on being asked if they’d want to do the reunion again, Richard responded with a most definite “YES!” and later stated he’d be “happy on stage anywhere”.

“Well, you know, we’ve all been out,” Gilmour expanded, “All four of the old group - the classic line up if you want to call it that - have been out plying our trade this year and so we all are doing exactly that and it’s been enormously great fun for myself, and for Richard. How about you Nick? You’ve done it a little bit more recently!”

Mason: “Just looking at it again, it does remind you that it is great fun – I don’t think there is a better job in the world, really….”

On the foreseeable future, David remarked that “my plan is to just meander on in my own particular way for the time being.”

Pink Floyd PULSE launch
Wright at post-screening Q&A

Inevitably, the discussion turned to Live8.

Rick Wright followed by saying, “And I guess my plan is to meander along. AND whenever Dave wants me to play with him, I’m really happy to play with him. And [to Gilmour] you’ll play with me right?”

Gilmour: “Of course!” followed by Mason (to much laughter and applause) “Of course, I’m available to everyone.”

Gilmour did not rule out further archive releases, citing the 1989 Venice concert in particular, but claimed that there was nothing in the works. He responded to a query about the Wall shows at Earls Court by stating that the footage was now “100% under Roger Waters control”, and that the quality was still not quite good enough for release.

Pink Floyd PULSE launch
Gilmour and Mason at post-screening Q&A

There was a light-hearted question about Scissor Sisters’ version of Comfortably Numb, which Gilmour happily described as “jolly entertaining”. He said that he was happy for other people to cover Pink Floyd songs, and Mason added that innovative covers were preferable to tribute bands, “copying every mistake we’ve ever made, perfectly”. Wright highlighted the reggae album Dub Side of the Moon, and Mason claimed that Luther Wright and the Wrongs’ country and western version of The Wall was a particular favourite of his.

The final question was about the old Dark Side of the Moon/Wizard of Oz theory, which was met with mock exasperation by Mason. He closed the Q&A session by suggesting that if anyone had the time and inclination they might want to listen to The Wall while watching The Dam Busters, as apparently that doesn’t work either!

Report by Marcus Hearn and Matt Johns. All pictures © Matt Johns/Brain Damage. Our thanks to PFM, LD and EMI for their help.

PULSE can be ordered, with a discount, through the following special links, for delivery upon release if you are quick: Amazon UK, Amazon US/International, Canada, France, or Germany. Any item bought through these links at Amazon (not just Floyd items) helps with the running costs of the site, and we really appreciate it.

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