Mozart: Symphony Nos. 25, 28, 29 & 35 "Haffner"
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An outstanding addition to any Mozart collection
The movie "Amadeus" opens with a short excerpt from the first movement of Mozart's 25th symphony. I wanted the whole 25th symphony, and this recording intrigued me. It has other Mozart symphonies that get played far less than the 39th, 40th, or 41st. These 50 year old recordings are stunning. You can almost hear the cellists huffing and puffing to keep up with the first movement of the 25th. The recording has a very open and airy sound to it. It is not a hyper-accurate, heavily engineered recording if you prefer that sound. The dynamic range suffers a bit because of the vintage but it is very tolerable. Bruno Walter brings out everything from the orchestra and then some. The dynamics are outstanding and the tempo is always very crisp. If you have the "Amadeus" soundtrack, give the 25th symphony from this album a whirl; you will be amazed at the difference. If you enjoy Mozart and do not have these symphonies this is a great album to fill in your collection.
Yet another token of the magic of the mid-20th century orchestras and conducters (Walter being one of the best), this album, though getting used to older recordings may take some time for newcomers, contains one of the greatest recordings of the 35th symphony I've heard, surpassing many modern recordings. It's such a shame Walter died in the early '60s, though. His talent and insight on the music combined with '70s or '80s recording technology would create nearly perfect albums of the greatest symphonies ever written.