Primrose/Munch: Berlioz Harold in Italy Op. 16 - German RCA LSC-2228 (ED1)
Jacket VG+ / LP EX / German pressing
This lovely LP from German RCA (LSC-2228, German Teldec · Telefunken-Decca pressing, red/silver “Living Stereo” label – ED1) features William Primrose’s unsurpassed account of Berlioz’s Harold en Italie Op. 16, made with Charles Munch and the Boston Symphony Orchestra in the rich acoustics of Symphony Hall Boston, on 31 March 1958 – a gramophone classic.
Wrote the wonderful critic and author David Hurwitz in his 10/10 review for ClassicsToday:
“My colleague Christophe Huss at CTFrance.com put his finger right on the button when he described this performance as "Perhaps not the best finale, but just perfect everywhere else." It's true that Munch isn't quite as frenzied as, say, Toscanini, Bernstein (Sony), or the recent Davis (LSO) in the concluding "orgy of brigands", but this being Munch he's certainly exciting enough. And you won't hear a more exciting opening movement, a more atmospheric pilgrim's march, or a more delicious serenade. Certainly this is one of the two or three Harolds that no self-respecting Berlioz collection should be without.
“It's simply amazing how well so many of Munch's performances have held up over the decades. As most collectors already know, he always was at his best in Berlioz, and no doubt these performances will continue to hold a position of honor for many years to come.”
There are superb liner notes on the reverse side of the jacket by John N. Burk, printed in English only. The striking cover photo is credited to FFG / Duncan Edwards.
The gradations of condition I use are as follows: MINT, Near-Mint, Excellent, Very Good, Good, Fair, Poor.
The condition of the jacket is VERY GOOD+. There is slight discoloration and wear along the open edge of the jacket, but that is all. There are no seamsplits, owners’ markings, bends, or other defects, and the album remains solid, bright, glossy, and highly attractive – in all, a very good collector's copy.
The condition of the LP itself is EXCELLENT. Although the surfaces are not absolutely silent, really this is a fine copy and the playback is enjoyable. Those requiring a flawless or near-MINT copy are kindly advised to look elsewhere. Overall, this is an excellent collector's copy.