Since the first release in the series back in 2008, we have mapped out the growth of the spiritual sound in jazz. Spiritually energised and politically conscious, the spiritual sound in jazz music is one of the most important currents in the music. Our series has charted the growth of the style from early experiments at Blue Note and Prestige to European excursions, exiled experimentalists, and sounds from across the globe. But whenever you think of spiritual jazz, it's a fair bet that the double exclamation mark and orange and black spine of Impulse quickly comes to mind. Home to John and Alice Coltrane, Pharaoh Sanders, Yusef Lateef, McCoy Tyner and countless other musical pioneers, Impulse! was the most important and forward-thinking jazz label of the 1960s. With the music-first attitude of an independent but the clout of a major, producers Creed Taylor and Bob Thiele made Impulse the defining imprint of a crucial decade. They hand picked the top players of the moment and gave them freedom to record the music they wanted, setting out their stall with a bold slogan 'The New Wave Of Jazz Is On Impulse!'
Here we dive deep into the Impulse! catalogue, bringing celebrated masterpieces from Alice Coltrane and Pharaoh Sanders into the arena, together with lesser known cuts from Phil Woods and John Klemmer as well as straight-up classics such from Yusef Lateef and Elvin Jones. Fifty years on and the new wave of jazz still sounds fresh, vibrant and as relevant as ever.