Week of October 27, 2002

Blocco Mentale

Aldo Angeletti - lead vocals, bass
Filippo Lazzari - keyboards, harmonica, vocals
Dino Finocchi - lead vocals, sax, flute
Gigi Bianchi - guitars, vocals
Michele Arena - drums, percussion, vocals


Poa 1973, Titania BM 2301

Their sole album is one of the really outstanding pearls of Italian rock. Being more introspective and relaxed in style than most, this very poetic and fragile album has sadly been overlooked by some collectors. The delightful melodies are performed by a very distinctive vocalist with a slightly nasal, high-pitched voice, comparable to Par Moran of the British group Spring or Colin Goldring of Gnidrolog. Instrumental reference points could include Procol Harum, Raw Material and Van Der Graaf Generator. In places, three-part vocal harmonies add hippie vibes resembling some of the US West Coast bands. The tracks form an interconnected 7-part suite with varied instrumental backing (piano, organ, flute, mellotron, guitar, sax, moog, in this order). "La Nuova Forza" is the best example, blending complex prog, folk, jazz and harmony pop in a classic 8-minute track. By the way, "Poa" is the Greek word for the fertile element: earth.

Taken from Scented Gardens of the Mind - A guide to the Golden Era of Progressive Rock (1968-1980) in more than 20 European Countries, by Dag Erik Asbjørnsen, Borderline Productions, ISBN 1-899855-12-2

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