This would have to be narrowly my favourite performance of the Brahms symphonies for both the passion of the interpretations and the magnificent playing of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. These performances, and those by the Philadelphia Orchestra conducted by Riccardo Muti, manage to combine the impressive power of the full orchestra with tender lyricism in the quieter sections, like the adagio 2nd movement in the 1st Symphony and the `andante' 2nd movement of the 3rd Symphony - so lyrical it was made into a popular song that Mario Lanza recorded. This 4 CD set also includes the intense Tragic Overture and the Academic Festival Overture that date from 1880, composed between the 2nd and 3rd Symphonies. This is a fine, uplifting account of Brahms' orchestral music.
I've never thought of Solti as a conductor to turn to for Brahms but that was my mistake. I find these interpretations perfectly satisfying in every way with classic rich, clear, yet atmospheric recording from Decca at its best.