The Pulitzers Honk Honk (Zip Records 2023)


Superfunky fellows from the Low-Lands are firmly in the pocket.

The Pulitzers - Honk Honk


Frank Montis (organ), Bas van der Wal (guitar), Phil Martin (percussion), Salle de Jonge (drums)


in 2022 at Epic Rainbow Unicorn Studio


as Zip 343 in 2023

Track listing

Side A:
Honk Honk
Sitting Duck
Sun Trippin’
Side B:
Don’t Get Around Much Anymore
Smack ‘Em
The Girthship
Booth Rider

The Pulitzers deal in old-school groove. A good thing that they didn’t choose an obvious retro band name like Grease Machine or Chicken & The Dumplins. The Pulitzers sounds just right. Touch of class. What’s with Pulitzer? A luxury train coach? No, that’s Pullman. An automobile? Can’t seem to remember but it’s very likely. After all, the sleeve from their debut album Honk Honk shows one car trying to pass another on the highway.

Turns out it’s none of the above. As Frank Montis says, “We were Spark but that doesn’t sound very original. Then Salle said, ‘we gotta have sumpin’ like The Pulitzers or sumpin’ like that.’

Well done. At any rate, The Pulitzers are young veterans of the Dutch scene, organist Frank Montis, guitarist Bas van der Wal, percussionist Phil Martin and drummer Salle de Jonge. Even better than picking a good name, and more importantly, they invested all their expertise and soul into a real good’n and offer a variety of spices with a modern sound all their own and plenty ear for detail.

As taste and detail go, take Smack ‘Em, a bonafide homage to The Meters, a sassy tune and monster groove. Salle de Jonge not only perfectly carries over the history of jazz funk drumming to this day and age but here also reproduces the “primitive” New Orleans sound of the snare drums. All the renditions of original tunes by The Pulitzers (old warhorse Don’t Get Around Much Anymore is the only cover) are great too because they are both firmly in the pocket as well as marked by killer solos.

Honk Honk is a powerful uptempo burner that highlights the guitar work of Van der Wal, a great mix of Grant Green and Melvin Sparks. Montis, the hottest ‘bluesjazz’ organist for miles and miles around, puts his heart and soul, not to mention exceptional chops, into a mere minute of Hammond B3 variations.

Pay attention as well to how The Pulitzers rock The Girthship and Montis teasingly provides high-pitched backing to Van der Wal and subsequently takes center stage on a similarly spirited note. This type of hard funk is alternated with supple, slick soul, the kind of sensual or sexual healing force that should push many a romantic rendezvous in the living room or bedroom to a well-deserved and pleasurable climax.

If there would be something like a Pulitzer Prize for soul jazz, there is no doubt as to who should be the Dutch nominee.

The Pulitzers

Find Honk Honk at Frank’s place here.

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