For anyone that has any kind of interest in classical music, a begginer or a connaisseur, this set is as essential as having ears to listen.
Prepare yourself for the bad sound: these are recordings from the II WW Period, taken in Berlin. But put in your mind that Furtwängler and BPO played this music under air-strikes, playing as if it was the last thing to do.
I recommend all the set (the Weber overtures are a little bit less interesting), because of the absolute way of Furtwängler of revising the score and bringing its darker and most painful side. But definitely, I recommend mainly the 5th and 7th, that are the most haunting performances ever. Everything here screams deepness, inner universes, a devastating strength. The 5th first mouvement seems to gather all the darkness of the beggining and the end of the world: the music emerges with a daunting authority, as it was played for the last time. If you have the EMI Furtwängler's recordings of Beethoven, these are other recordings, and very different from the other 5th and 7 th presented there, more mild in their own type of darkness.
The "Coriolanus" Overture has a titanesque reading. The timpani and the winds draw a line that we cannot be sure if it is from death to life.
You cannot be the same after listening to these recordings. Please don't forget your neighbours.