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The Story of Impulse!

Introducing VMP Anthology: The Story of Impulse!, an eight-album trip through the catalog of one of the most important jazz labels ever dreamed up by record executives. Established as a way to challenge the status quo in jazz LPs, Impulse! charted the evolution of jazz in the ’60s, capturing all of its disparate strands, as well as its finest composers and performers.

NOTE: Please purchase this product individually, as it cannot be combined with other products in our store.
Orders are expected to ship Summer 2024. Timeline is subject to change.
We will notify you of any shipping updates.
This grouping of records from Impulse!’s catalog suggests its range, its center and its corners. They cross-reference each other in aims and influences. Taken together, they do not only tell a story about the label’s significance in its own time, the sort of narrative jazz critics have used for 60 years; they also tell a story about what was not deemed significant to jazz in its own time, as well as what the label came to mean for listeners long afterward.
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Ben Ratliff
author of the Listening Notes for The Story of Impulse!

Get The Whole Story

VMP Anthology goes beyond the 8 LPs included in your box. Alongside your box and the albums within it, we provide in-depth, original Listening Notes and a digestible multi-episode podcast series to serve as your definitive guide though these records. VMP Anthology isn’t just a box set, created to gather dust on your shelves — it’s an immersive and transformative story that comes alive for you to spend weeks (or longer!) inside of. We can’t wait for you to hear the rest of the Impulse! story from our panel of artists and experts.

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John Coltrane
Africa/Brass (1961)
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The New Amazing Chico Hamilton Quintet
Passin' Thru (1963)
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Lorez Alexandria
Alexandria The Great (1964)
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Charles Mingus
Mingus Plays Piano (Spontaneous Compositions and Improvisations) (1964)
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Gábor Szabó
Jazz Raga (1966)
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Mel Brown
Chicken Fat (1967)
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Pharoah Sanders
Karma (1969)
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Alice Coltrane
Ptah, The El Daoud (1970)

What's Included

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Accompanying Podcast Series
Our Anthology podcast is here to guide you through each album in the box, which we’ve broken up into multiple episodes in digestible lengths.
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Eight Impulse! Masterpieces
First edition limited to 2,000, pressed on 180g black vinyl at (RTI) Record Technology Incorporated. Lacquers cut by Ryan Smith and Barry Grint.
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High-quality Mastering
The first six titles are AAA-mastered from tapes, and the final two are mastered from a hybrid of the highest quality digital and physical masters available, with lacquers cut by Ryan Smith and Barry Grint.
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Listening Notes
Read the story of these eight albums in a very special 28-page Listening Notes booklet, written by jazz critic and writer Ben Ratliff and featuring photography from the era.
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Premium Commemorative Box
Designed by VMP’s Clay Conder, this box captures the original spirit and style of Impulse!, with its distinctive blending of orange, white and black.
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Special Impulse! Merch
Every purchaser of The Story of Impulse! will get a surprise bonus piece of official Impulse! merch.
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How Was The Audio Sourced?

The first six titles (Africa/Brass, Passin’ Thru, Alexandria The Great, Mingus Plays Piano, Jazz Raga and Chicken Fat) are AAA-mastered from tapes. For the seventh, Karma, the master tapes were digitized and supplemented with high quality digital sources, and the eighth, Ptah, The El Daoud, is mastered from the highest quality digital masters. Lacquers were cut by Ryan Smith and Barry Grint, and all eight titles are pressed on 180g vinyl at TBA.

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Podcast & Listening Notes

Go beyond the albums by reading our 28-page Listening Notes booklet, written by Ben Ratliff. It covers the story of Impulse!, each individual album in the box and their place in the story of jazz. Our accompanying podcast offers a unique perspective and insight on each album and was produced in close conjunction with the Impulse! team. Find it on streaming services when your Anthology ships, and listen to each corresponding episode as you make your way through the records in your box.


Got a question?

VMP Anthology is the vinyl box set, reinvented. It aims to use music to tell a story, and gives space for lots of listening, learning, and conversation along the way.
VMP started as a record of the month club in 2013 and has expanded into an online record store and magazine.
Shipping is free in the U.S. and $30 internationally. Records will be sent in one shipment. Orders are expected to ship in Summer 2024. Timeline is subject to change due. We will notify you of any shipping updates.
We created VMP Anthology for people who recognize that every album has a deep story to tell. By breaking up the albums into 4 weeks, we give you space to truly listen and absorb each individual recording, listen to the podcast and soak it in. Of course, this is just a suggested cadence!
Nope! We built VMP Anthology as a way for all fans to experience music more deeply, and VMP membership is not required.
Yes, shipping is available in 16 countries in addition to the U.S. (view all FAQs for more details). For international customers, customs and duties will be due upon receipt.
Afterpay is an interest-free financing option that allows you to make four bi-weekly (every two weeks) installment payments rather than one upfront payment. If you choose Afterpay at checkout, you will be redirected to the Afterpay site to create an account and to complete your payment. You won’t be charged any interest or fees, as long as your payments are made on time. At this time, Afterpay is only available for customers in the United States.
To get the Member Price, you must be an active VMP Member for our monthly record subscription (and make sure you are logged in).

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