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Jed Distler, January 2016

The singers are captured in their vocal and expressive prime, tearing into the Act 2 love duet with ecstatic abandon. What’s more, their effortless vocalism (singly and together) abounds in sheer musicality and more dramatic insight than is often credited to them.

Fritz Reiner’s disciplinary tactics yield coherence, shape, and a high standard of orchestral playing. © 2016 Read complete review

Henry Fogel
Fanfare, November 2001

Mark Obert-Thorn is, along with Ward Marston, one of the finest transfer engineers restoring historic material. He has redone the previously issued and justly famous Reiner Tristan from Covent Garden, 1937. With Flagstad and Melchior, Naxos' budget price, and its best sound yet, this self-recommends.

Andrew Farach-Colton
Barnes & Noble

"Kirsten Flagstad and Lauritz Melchoir are archetypal Wagner performers, displaying not only the requisite heft to soar over a large orchestra but also abundant passion, understanding, and physical stamina, and this famous performance, recorded live at Covent Garden in 1936, is a thrilling monument to their artistry. The current dearth of Wagnerian singers has turned Tristan und Isolde into a conductor's opera, but despite the exciting and exacting leadership of Fritz Reiner, Flagstad and Melchoir hold center stage here. One is swept away as much by the beauty of their sound as by their ecstatic expressions of desire. Rarely has the second-act love duet been so intoxicating­Kit is remarkable how much detail comes through, given the recording's age­KNaxos has done Wagnerites an immeasurable service by re-releasing this classic performance. It is a priceless document from a particularly resplendent era of Wagner interpretation."

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