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Silent Heaven: Learning to Be Silent / When Heaven Comes to Town

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Album Review

Silent Heaven is a CD re-issue of two of C.W. Vrtacek's solo LPs from the 1980s: Learning to Be Silent (Cordelia Records, 1986) and When Heaven Comes to Town (Re Records, 1988). This CD shows another side of the hybrid surf rock/prog rock trio Forever Einstein's leader, his softer side. Both albums have been recorded at home on a four-track machine. Vrtacek uses acoustic guitars, piano, tapes and found sounds to create short instrumental tunes. One can't help but think of Steve Hackett's Bay of Kings: simple songs with beautiful melodies. The whole thing is very aerial. Some will perceive it as lacking sustenance, but it is refreshing to hear Vrtacek away from the surf guitar licks. Silent Heaven is meditative and introspective without resorting to new age recipes. The minimal piano stylings of "Minus My Friend" and "Stone Steps" create enchanting landscapes. The last track, "When Heaven Comes to Town," is a 26-minute audio art piece; it gives a lot more depth to Forever Einstein's funny man. Of course, those coming to this album through Vrtacek's work with Forever Einstein or Biota will be destabilized. ~ François Couture, Rovi


Genre: Rock

Years Active: '80s

Born in 1953, Charles Vrtacek began playing guitar at the age of 11. He has been the guitarist in Forever Einstein since their inception. He also has released several solo albums. Before Forever Einstein, he played with...
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Silent Heaven: Learning to Be Silent / When Heaven Comes to Town, C.W. Vrtacek
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