Szell/Cleveland Orchestra: Beethoven Symphony No. 3 Op. 55 "Eroica" - Epic LC 3855
Jacket EX / LP EX / US pressing
This handsome LP from Epic (LC 3385, US pressing, gold/black radial label, mono) features George Szell and the Cleveland Orchestra's thrilling account of Beethoven's Symphony No. 3 in E-flat Major Op. 55 "Eroica", taped in the warm acoustics of Severance Hall, Cleveland on 22/23 February 1957, in sessions supervised by veteran producter Howard H. Scott.
Wrote critic Victor Carr Jr. for ClassicsToday.com: "For decades Szell's Beethoven cycle has been justly hailed as one of the best on discs, and the reasons are clear: lively and dramatic interpretations that are true to the Beethovenian spirit married to simply spectacular orchestral playing. The Eroica, with its bracing opening movement (with the climactic trumpet line played all the way through, thank you!), has all the drive, energy, and clarity of many of today's so-called authentic performances, but with more robust strings and fuller-bodied horns. However it's in the finale, with its sizzling coda played at breakneck speed with perfect brass articulation, where Szell clobbers the competition."
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. The only real flaw concerns a former catalog sticker to the lower-left corner. There is also slight bumping/wear at corners, but that is all. There are no seamsplits, bends, owners' markings, or other defects, and the album remains solid, bright, and very striking in appearance – overall, an excellent collector's copy.
The condition of the LP itself is EXCELLENT. The surfaces are not CD silent, but in general the playback is superb. Overall, this is an excellent collector's copy.