Area - International POPular Group

Caution Radiation Area

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Area's second album takes its cues from the most serious side of early-'70s British progressive rock, particularly Soft Machine and King Crimson. There's a high-voltage, at times furious energy to the quasi-jazz-rock fusion, with keyboards showing some influence from Miles Davis fusion records, and the guitars wheeling off lines with a busy anxiety. Despite some sinister progressions and overlays of electronic squiggles (the closing "Lobotomia" consists almost entirely of disquieting electronic effects) and white noise percussion, there's a shortage of memorable riffs. That approach, combined with the impenetrability of the Italian-sung lyrics to the English-speaking audience that comprised much of the art rock audience, confined their international audience to a small cult one. Some idiosyncratic features distinguish it from other little-known Continental prog rock of the era, particularly the eerie yodeling vocals, though those are only occasionally heard. It's a dark record, and obviously intended to provoke and disturb; it's just not too special.

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