These four discs really are a treat for lovers of great music. Giulini's control of the orchestra is assured but never overbearing, his tempi carefully worked-out but never inflexible. The set begins with Mahler's First Symphony, and Giulini treats the work as the masterpiece it assuredly is. Although not as intense as the next few symphonies in Mahler's oeuvre, it is a fully-realized work. The outer movements are beautifully played, but it is the third movement funeral march, based on "Frere Jacques", which clinched it for me. This really is a superb performance, certainly one to live with. Beethoven Seven takes up most of disc two, and here is where the fireworks really begin. Although I possess over twenty different recordings of this work, I have heard few better than this. The first movement is lyrical and invigorating, with Giulini demonstrating an instinctive grasp of line. The second movement is elegant and heroic, rather than tragic, although it seems that not all conductors understand the difference. The fourth movement finale is strident, playful and colourful, perfectly justifying its well-known epithet as "the apotheosis of the dance" (Wagner). Giulini's understanding of Beethoven is clearly extremely deep, as he lets the composer dictate the pace, understanding that Beethoven knows exactly what he is doing. This one work alone justifies the purchase, although there really are no weak spots at all on this release. The Bruckner nine has a deeply moving slow finale which never wallows in its misery as lesser conductors are prone to allow, and the filler, Berlioz and Stravinsky, are likewise well-played. The only complaint, and it is a small one, is that the excellent Brahms Fourth is split across two discs. Nevertheless, the performace is one of the best available, though perhaps not up to the standards of Sawallisch. The sound throughout is excellent. Don't hesitate: if you love great music there is much here to enjoy.