Finally. That's the main word that comes to mind when I think of this offering. It's the long-awaited DVD release of Pink Floyd's (so far) swan song of a concert spectacular. After years of delays, and I would imagine a fair amount of band politics, Pulse is finally making its way to your digital video library.
Pulse chronicles the 1994 tour in support of Pink Floyd's The Division Bell album. The video was filmed over various nights during their two-week residency at London's Earls Court. The venue is enormous, the lights are overwhelming, the performances are massive, and the energy is huge.
Fans have been anxiously waiting to (legally) obtain this show on DVD. The new transfer looks amazing. Short version: you can, at long last, safely throw out your VHS copy, since it's probably worn out by this time anyway.
I won't waste a lot of time on a review of the show, since it is previously released content and one of the better selling concert releases to date. Suffice it to say, though, this is nothing if not blindingly impressive, both as a huge stadium media extravaganza and also as a finely honed rock show.
The band sounds amazingly tight, the supporting players complement the ethos of the Pink Floyd sound, and it all comes together to create a visual that nearly overloads the senses.
The audio and video for this release has been scrubbed down and cleaned up, and tweaked and remastered with care. David Gilmour was involved with the audio mix and supervised the 5.1 surround sound tracks. In fact, there are actually two 5.1 audio options to choose from, a 448 kbps version and another at 640 kbps. I'd be lying if I said I knew what the difference is. I chose the 640 kbps mix, since we all know bigger is better, and it sounded great.
The video looks very clean and crisp, although there are a few moments where the colors either get oversaturated or alternately washed out. This is due to the source footage and not the fault of the transfer. The picture itself is presented in its original 4:3 aspect ratio, so just a note to say it's not optimized for your widescreen plasma, but you can find comfort in knowing they didn't chop off parts of the image to make that happen either. Overall, it looks and sounds absolutely pristine.