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Philip Anson

More winning archival recordings from Mengelberg and the Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra, taped at the Concertgebouw (1927-1942). Mengelberg's long association with Amsterdam's Concertgebouw (1895 1945) was a musical marriage made in heaven, later tainted by his alleged Nazi collaboration. Compared to Naxos's great reissues of Mengelberg's Brahms' Symphonies No. 2 and 4 (8.110158) and Strauss Tone Poems (Naxos 8.110161), this bouquet of overtures looks a bit like leftovers, but there is plenty of beauty and excitement in the Leonore Overtures No. 1 and 3, the Egmont Overture, and the Turkish March from The Ruins of Athens. Though the sound of the old 78s is distant and thin by today's standards, there is enough detail for one to appreciate Mengelberg's precise, masterful, interpretation and the orchestra's incredible accuracy and responsiveness. The audio restoration by Mark Obert-Thorn is clear and natural.

Mortimer H. Frank

"Save for the 1927 recording of the second movement of the Beethoven Eighth Symphony, these items will add dimension to the conductor to anyone unfamiliar with them. They have appeared in previously extended-play transfers, but never in better sound or at such a reasonable price...Mark Obert-Thorn's transfers are superb. In short, this is a most welcome historical reissue."

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