Shanachie's Acoustic Heart, Vol. 2: The Passion and Romance of Acoustic Guitar Masters is a fine showcase of acoustic players in a wide variety of styles. Spanning the solemn beauty of Peter White's "Lullaby," the simplicity of Pat Metheny's version of "Don't Know Why," and the intimate intricacy of Billy McLaughlin's "Soulmates" in its first three tracks alone, the collection proves that the acoustic guitar is limited only by the expressiveness of its players. And the album features some of the instrument's contemporary masters, including Earl Klugh, Eric Tingstad, and Acoustic Alchemy, while also nodding to up-and-coming talents like Kaki King, whose "Night After Sidewalk" is one of the collection's highlights. Keola Beamer's "Ku'uipo Ku'u Lei," Wendy Waldman's "Wild Bird," and Artie Traum's "Blue Hotel" are some of the other standout tracks. A pleasant, subtle collection, Acoustic Heart, Vol. 2: The Passion and Romance of Acoustic Guitar Masters holds up to close listening and also works equally well as background music.
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AllMusic Review by Heather Phares