Rainer Ptacek / Rainer

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Nocturnes Review

by Bob Gottlieb

This is one of those rare special albums you run across every now and then that make you sit up and listen. It defies genre, though if pushed I will call it blues, because the main instruments are a National Steel guitar and a dobro, and the time structures. It opens with a stunning instrumental version of George Harrison's "Within You, Without You," the only cut on the album Rainer didn't write. There are echoes of Ry Cooder's slide playing from the Paris, Texas time period on this album (no small achievement), and yet there is also at times a very ethereal mood evoked. This is a solo album in that there are no credits for other musicians except on the one cut "Ode to N 2 O," where the Grid took his music and applied some other instrumental backing. It is a CD that is exceedingly thought-provoking, and should be heard. Try to find this one: it will be well worth the effort spent.

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