Barshai/Oistrakh: Berlioz Harold in Italy Op. 16 (rec. 1964) - Melodiya C 0893-4
Jacket EX / LP EX / Russian pressing
This outstanding LP from Melodiya (C 0893-4, Soviet pressing, black/silver label, stereo) features Rudolf Barshai’s absolutely unsurpassed account of Berlioz’s Harold in Italy Op. 16, recorded in Moscow in 1964 with David Oistrakh conducting the Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra.
“Unsurpassed” is a term one should use reserverdly, and though there have been superlative recordings of this work by William Primrose, Yehudi Menuhin, Nobuko Imai, Pinchas Zukerman, et al, for my money Barshai sweeps the board, with Oistrakh providing wonderfully imaginative accompaniment, and the Moscow Philharmonic playing brilliantly.
The gradations of condition I use are as follows: MINT, Near-Mint, Excellent, Very Good, Good, Fair, Poor.
The condition of the jacket is EXCELLENT. There is slight evidence of shelfwear, as well as two small former price stickers to the rear panel, but that is all. There are no seamsplits, bends, or owners’ markings and the whole remains solid, bright, and glossy, and quite handsome in appearance – overall, an excellent collector's copy.
The condition of the LP itself is similarly EXCELLENT. Although the surfaces are not always CD silent, in general the playback is superb. Only those needing an absolutely flawless copy need hesitate. Overall, this rates as an excellent collector's copy.