Review by Graham Clark|
Strangely enough for a Bayreuth "Ring", the Götterdämmerung of
Böhm's set remains at the same high standards as the rest of his
recording. This is partly thanks to the outstanding Brünnhilde of
Birgit Nilsson, who is nothing short of awsome in the Final Scene.
(In the Penguin Guide to Compact Discs, I read that she herself has
always preferred this version to the one she did for Solti, which is
also very good.) Mainly it is the spectacularly exciting conducting
from Maestro Böhm, however, which has made this (and the rest of
the cycle) recording so succesful.
The sound quality (or is it the playing?) does not always do justice
to the orchestra. The brass is often to closely miked, for example,
even though this is less evident than in the other operas. The singing
is generally very fine, except for the fruity Gutrune of Ludmila
Dvoráková. Windgassen is wonderful as Siegfried, even if he is sometimes
undermined by the microphines, and Josef Greidl is a magnificent Hagen.
Despite some trifling objections raised above, this recording of
Götterdämmerung is matched only by Solti's, and possibly several
others (though Bayreuth itself has never re-achieved this standard).
Note that Böhm's speeds, though very fast, are not ones which will
rush you, but just the opposite. As with his Tristan, his choice of
speeds for the entire "Ring" make me feel as if I am really
This review is from the now closed Wagner on the Web and it is published
without the author's consent. I haven't been able to get in touch with him.
If the author reads this, please contact me as soon as possible. If you
don't want it here, I'll take it of the site immediately.