some review from The Spanish Progressive Rock Encyclopedia:
Spanish progressive band that had an album Hombre Tierra Y Alma that echoes strongly of the 70's italian scene with a strong folk- influenced feel in a way similar to Banco or PFM. Highly recommended. (?)
A Spanish Progressive band with a few albums out. The only one I've heard is their third, El Hijo Del Alba. At the very beginning it sounds like it might be a little bit weak, along the lines of Synergy or something, only much less interesting. However, this is quickly left behind and the album becomes much more interesting, at least in its variety. Bloque blend synth and Spanish vocals with electric and acoustic guitar (lots of electric) in a wide variety of styles. Vaguely Celtic folk melodies, acoustic ballads with melodic guitar solos that make me think of a Spanish Allman Brothers (for lack of better comparison), heavy riffing with feisty guitar solos like many a UK rock band (say, a cross between Thin Lizzy and Black Sabbath), upbeat rock 'n' roll songs with backing horns, driving passages that remind of the Italian band Osanna and much more: these (inadequately) hint at the diversity of styles heard on just the first side of the album. The band sure can't be faulted for standing still! The second side is more Progressive (also more better, to use a cajun phrase) with several songs (mostly guitar excursions, some synth) held together by a recurring theme stated by keyboards and guitar. The problem is that the album as a whole doesn't sound cohesive but instead like a mere collection of songs. The first side fails to build excitement and anticipation for the second side instead, I become confused as to the purpose and direction of the band. Too, the bassist and drummer play in a simple rhythm without much variation which fails to draw me into the music. Not bad, but I can't seem to get real excited about this particular album. However, it is enough to make me curious about some of their earlier albums. Basically, if you can find it at a deal, snatch it up. But there are several other bands more worthy of your long green if you are still exploring or on a limited budget. (?)
Bloque is certainly one of the best groups to come from the '70s Spanish scene. Their style is best described as guitar-oriented melodic prog rock. That is not to say that they do not use keyboards, but certainly the guitar is the focal point. Vocals are in Spanish, of course. Their best is Musica Para La Libertad which includes the incredible instrumental track, "Tau Ceti," which is guaranteed to make guitar fans drool. El Hijo del Alba is also excellent. If you are still hungry, get the second one. Their first is rather poor and only for completists. Juan Joy
I think that Hombre, Tierra y Alma is one of the most coherent and touching symphonic rock albums ever done in Spain. Absolutely a must. The spanish progressive of the 70's was strongly influenced by the jazz, flamenco and hard rock, and Bloque was one of the bands that played a purest symphonic rock. Is this why is one of my favourites? In 1999 they released a new CD, recorded live with old themes and some others previously unrelseased.
Sixto Ruiz (Guitar and vocals), Juanjo Respuela (Guitar and vocals), Juan C. Gutierrez (keys and vocals), Francisco Baños (drums) (by Carlos Teran) and Luis Pastor (bass) (by Javier Tazon).
01 - Pesadilla De Vivir 3:55 02 - El Poder De La Libertad 7:16 03 - Aсoranza 4:50 04 - Camino Del Universo 2:50 05 - Tau Ceti 4:20 06 - Detenidos En La Materia 6:33 07 - Sуlo Sentimiento 3:21 08 - Mбgico Y Salvaje
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