Blocco Mentale - Poa (1973)

I liked this album so much since the first time i listened to it, and it could be right now one of my favorites italian albums that i recently discovered. POA was released in 1973, when Italian prog scene was at it`s highest moments!, when progressive music was still being developed by it`s best bands named King Crimson or Genesis, when i listen to this album i can notice that those monsters bands were influential to Blocco Mentale, talking about foreign monster bands, but the main influence that it shows is PFM, being from the same country, it`s obvious that they had to follow some masters and precursors.

Here we will find a clear traditional Italian sound, and im not refering only to the vocals and language, but about the music, besides that, a brillian saxophone playing along with the exquisite druming, gives to it a touch of melodic and sensational jazz, but the most of the time and listening to the keyboards, we will find that symphonic music is what they have offered to us.

This album contains 7 great songs, as opener song we will find "Capita" which in it`s first notes we will hear the sax, reminding us a bit of VdGG and then with the guitars i clearly remember some Crimson in it`s LTiA era, but that is only a little bit, then the song turns slow and with THAT traditional Italian sound which is so beautiful to me. Also i have to tell you that Blocco Mentale doesn`t have a vocalist, but 5 vocalists, every single member of this band contributes with their vocals in some parts of the album, we can notice it since this first song.

"Aria e Miele" it`s a great short song with again a VdGG touch on it, but with the always enjoyable piano sound, i forgot to mention that the flute also plays a big role in this album, not a Thijs van Leer but Dino Finocchi made an excellent work here and i have to mention it at least. This song is very catchy and symphonic.

"Impressione" is the longest and probably the best song here, it`s beautiful it has a great soft keyboard sound, and a beautifully calmed flute sound, one thing that i love is the italian language, so it`s an extra point when the fleuntly of the vocals are present in an album, it`s so delicated an pretty, which along with acoustic guitars, gives to it nothing but beauty. The song becomes faster somewhere, again with that sax and the great drumming during, actually i think this passage it`s one of the finest moments of the album, nothing outstanding, but believe me, it`s great!

"Io e Me" has an additional instrument, the harmonica which is better used in blues than in soft songs like here, that could be something that i dislike a bit, the song is not the best really, but still good, reminding me a bit of PFM.

"La Nuova Forza" is another great song, over 7 minutes of excellent recording and the best of vocal performance could be found here. In this song when the vocals appear, my mind immediately focus on New Trolls, taking some songs of the Concerto Grosso as a valid point of comparision, but also Per un Amico`s influences are clearly shown here. The song actually it`s not that complex, but enjoyable nonetheless.

"Ritorno" follows the previous song but with a harder intro, with keyboards and drums faster, but suddenly the piano appears and takes the song for itself, about one minute it`s only for the piano, i know it`s not so much but its a pretty nice passage, then the song becomes more melodic. Maybe the electric guitar sound is not so stron in this album, but here we can find some nice solos, and finishing the song, a fusion moment! sax ,keyboards and drums making me shake my head, great!

And to finish the album, a song called "Verde" which is a short but nice song to finish an album that i have really enjoyed so much, this is kid of a happy ending, a nice soft melody with the traditional italian sound. - Review by memowakeman (Guillermo Hdez. Urdapilleta)

Track Listings

1. Capita (4:44)
2. Aria e mele (4:34)
3. Impressione (8:27)
4. Io e me (4:27)
5. La nuova forza (7:37)
6. Ritorno (5:34)
7. Verde (3:52)
Bonus on Mellow CD:
8. L`amore muore a vent`anni
9. Lei e musica

Total Time: 39:15

- Aldo Angeletti / solist vocals, bass
- Michele Arena / vocal, drums
- Gigi "Roso" Bianchi / vocals, guitar
- Filippo Lazzari / vocals, keyboards and harmonica
- Dino Finocchi / solist vocals, sax and flute
Releases information

LP Titania - BM 2301 - 1973
(Remastered by Vinyl Magic 2000 Records - a division of BTF srl - CD 032 - in 2000)


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