Pearl has assembled, for the first time under one roof, all 122 sides that comprise the celebrated HMV albums of extended Ring Cycle excerpts issued in the late twenties and early thirties. Many vocal aficionados consider this era to be the apex of Wagner singing in this century, with Schorr's virile yet compassionate Wotan, Leider's agile and authoritative Brünnhilde, and the unique Melchior, whose peerless Siegfried is heard here nearly complete. Moreover, these artists often appeared together in Europe and at Covent Garden, and had ample opportunity to hone their collective insights into these elusive roles.
Other highlights include Andrésens spine-tingling Hagen, Walter Widdop's ardent Siegmund, and a gorgeous Waltraute's Narrative from Maartje Offers. A dream come true for Wagner collectors, especially with Mark Obert-Thorn's splendid new transfers.
Copyright © 1994/1996, Jed Distler