Steinberg: Wagner music from Gotterdammerung / Tristan und Isolde - Capitol CTL 7035
Jacket VG / LP VG / UK Decca pressing
This superb LP – note the striking cover art – from Capitol (S 8185, US pressing, red/gold label, mono – no stereo edition exists, promo copy) features William Steinberg and the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra's resplendent Wagner album, recorded in the warm acoustics of Syria Mosque, Pittsburgh, on 17 November 1952.
Included are the following works of Wagner:
Götterdämmerung: Siegfried's Rhine Journey
Götterdämmerung: Siegfried's Funeral March
Tristan und Isolde: Prelude & Liebestod
The discography of the greatly under-rated Steinberg richly deserves systematic re-issue and renewed appreciation on disc. He was a brilliant conductor with a great sense of theater, which is all to the fore in this wonderful all-Wagner program. Although Steinberg would remake the Götterdämmerung selections in stereo a decade on, these earlier readings boast a frisson and sense of occasion that make them quite special. The warm analog sound is first class.
Incidentally, there are eloquent liner notes (uncredited) on the reverse side of the jacket, printed in English only. The remarkable cover art on the front panel is also uncredited.
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 edgewear, corner wear, and discoloration to the rear panel. However, there are no seamsplits, bends, owners’ markings, or other defects, and the album remains solid, bright, and highly attractive – overall, a very good collector’s copy.
The condition of the LP itself is VERY GOOD. Though there is surface noise and occasional tics, in general playback remains quite fine. However, those wanting a flawless or near-MINT copy are kindly advised to look elsewhere. Overall, this rates as a very good collector's copy.