This is the latest release in our on-going series of recordings by the legendary German conductor Fritz Busch, earlier issues of which have drawn exceptional reviews from the international classical press. The disc is made up of mainly overtures and orchestral preludes from the 19th-century, with Hugo Alfven’s ever-delightful Swedish Rhapsody No 1, one of the most tuneful and popular of all 20th-century short orchestral favourites. The repertoire therefore is surprisingly wide, and contains the conductor’s own orchestral version of a suite of dances compiled from Schubert’s music. With outstanding orchestral playing from orchestras in Winterthur, Los Angeles and Malmo, this CD offers another unique conspectus of the mastery of this great conductor.
"Guild continues apace with their fine series of reissues dedicated to the underrated Fritz Busch now espousing a brilliant collection of orchestral pieces from the US and Sweden in post-war performances of the highest caliber.
The Mendelssohn works are dapper and direct with the Overture "Fair Melusine" particularly appealing and recalling Schuricht’s equally brilliant Decca version. I also greatly enjoyed the "Egmont" Overture with its thrilling final coda and the Wagner items are heart on sleeve in the best sense of the word. All is rounded off with a rousing "Midsummer Night Vigil" by Alfvén in a rare performance from Malmö.
The recordings have been sprucely cleaned up although they suffer from some opaque sound in places. Notes and presentation are up to the usual Guild standards so one really cannot but wholeheartedly recommend this excellent disc which is a must for historical buffs."