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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sensational Music...but with a puzzle, 31 Mar 2014
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This review is from: Wagner: Das Rheingold (DECCA The Originals) (Audio CD)
I am not going to review this product at any length as it has been very comprehensively reviewed as part of the full Ring Cycle, see

Wagner: Der Ring des Nibelungen


Wagner: Der Ring des Nibelungen [Deluxe numbered limited edition]

I draw your attention specifically to the reviews by Uber Reviewer Stewart (DS) Crowe who lives and breathes Wagner. To say his knowledge is encyclopaedic would be selling him short. Seriously short.

You may wonder why there are two links: each link points to a different mastering of this superb work.

I bought this Das Rheingold because I have Solti's 1983 Bayreuth Ring (yes, the "fiasco"!) and while there are aspects of it that disappoint, overall it is another wonderful showcase of Solti's Wagner pedigree.

So, first of all let me be clear: this is a superb little box set worth every penny. Some may say other Rheingold are better - Karajan and Furtwangler are obvious alternatives - but this is absolutely masterful and in glorious sound.

How glorious? Well, therein lies the puzzle: the CD case and the booklet inside state " 96khZ-24 bit Remastering". When I saw graphic on the amazon site my heart leapt! I ordered it, of course.

However, the date on the back of the booklet shows 2008 and the preamble by James Lock is dated 1997.

Hmmm...wasn't the 24 bit remastering only done in 2012? Did Decca remaster Das Rheingold at 24 bit and quietly slip it into the market without any fanfare? Why?

The CDs are two replicas of the early Decca Full Frequency Stereophonic Sound LPs: a nice touch to the grizzlies like me who remember the first Stones stereo albums. There is a 100 page booklet with some background to the remastering of the music, full menu of all the music, the story of Das Rheingold and a complete libretto in German and English.

If you are looking to buy a fine stand-alone Rheingold in sumptuous stereo sound, this is highly recommended. If you are looking for a full Ring cycle...well, you need look no further than the full set by Solti, but I should mention that Solti's Full Wagner Opera box set is possibly the Deal of All Deals.

Wagner: The Operas

Good hunting!

PS: If anyone unlocks the puzzle, please post your finding. Thanks.

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Wagner: Das Rheingold (DECCA The Originals)
Wagner: Das Rheingold (DECCA The Originals) by Kirsten Flagstad (Audio CD - 2008)
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