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I heard the orchestra return to Northrop for a single concert, ca. 1971, and I was shocked by how the hall's acoustics dampened the orchestra's sound. Clearly, Mercury achieved a triumph recording Daphnis under such conditions, and your CD transfer does Mercury's achievement proud!
Tom Beers, Arlington, VA, USA for BRC-2825

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REMINGTON REVISITED

Remington is part of a legend today. The first budget LP, pressed not on vinyl but on vinylite (or "Websterlite" as claimed on the back of the first numbers, from the name of its inventor) these records were very much a product of their time: the War over, people listened to music on the radio and the revolution of the 33 1/3 RPM had just taken place. Donald Gabor (signing his productions as Don) set the basis of an expenseless organization and then had to find also expenseless artists for his recordings. In 1950 occupied Vienna (vide "The Third Man") was famished and lay in ruins. Gabor sent his staff there, where, for a piece of bread, they set the Viennese orchestras playing before the mikes whatever the avid American public demanded. The honors were made by the Tonkuenstlerorchester, Niederoesterreich, the Volksoper Orchestra and - on a luckier note - the Vienna Symphony Orchestra, all playing under the aliases "The Austrian Symphony Orchestra" or "the Symphony Orchestra of the Viennese Symphonic Society". Sometimes both: the Austrian SO on the hard cover, the latter name on the labels. Were it for copyright reasons or were it because the Remington buyers (at $2.99) would be mystified by the exotic names of the orchestras, they played and appeared under these aliases. You can read an interesting contemporary (early 1950s) article about the Remingtons, as appraised by Cecil Smith (on an article for the New Republic) and it is sure that a search in the web will bring you to pages devoted to these collector's items. And of course the very fine page of Remington expertly done by R.A. Bruil in the web which you must visit at http://www.soundfountain.org/rem/dongabor.html This is mandatory for anyone interested on these legendary LPs of the early period.

For our part, we opted for a separate listing of our transfers made from Remington originals. First of all because they will appeal only to a few older collectors (and fewer still adventurous younger ones) who would like to re-live the experience these rarities offered them some decades ago. No Remington recording (save a very few perhaps) have gone to CD - neither is it possible that they ever will. It is not known if the master tapes are still preserved somewhere, or whether someone has acquired rights over them.

Secondly, Remingtons actually were not hi-fi records and things were worsened by the use of this kind of vinyl substitute Don Gabor chose to press them on. The original sound, played directly from the LP with no correction is appalling for today's standards. Wiry, strident, bass-shy, noisy. Playing is for the most part unrehearsed, in patchy, scrawny, often dissonant renditions that cannot claim either the musical or sonic excellence we are used to today. The artists involved in these recordings came also cheap: many of them have never been heard of again. And many more were made known later, recording under less slipshod conditions and recorded with more care. Jorg Demus, Edward Kilenyi, Gaspar Cassado and Fritz Busch (already big names), Michele Auclair, Albert Spalding, Jonel Perlea, H. Arthur Brown and George Singer, Alfred Poel and many others.

And yet - - there is a mysterious magic in some of these records which makes them worth hearing. It may be the passion with which the Austrians sometimes played for Remington engineers, the tradition deep in their bones, the enthusiasm of some money to secure them a living, their sheer enjoyment of making music - nobody can say what exactly. But it is there and our transfers will witness to that.

We have of course taken drastic steps to make them sound acceptable. Apart from cleaning the rough vinylite sides, removing scratches, clicks, pops and bumps, we had to sweeten the wiry strings and give some body to the bottomless orchestras. The result is a surprisingly acceptable sound and more than often some surprisingly (or not so surprisingly) fine renditions. We have - as always - tried to be discreet. The Remington sound is still there, don't worry. N.B. It should be noted that some noises should be expected in the transfers, hard as we tried to cure most of them.



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BRC-1851 Beethoven PC4 Wuehrer-Pastoral Woss
Beethoven Piano Concerto no 4 in G op.58 - Friedrich Wuehrer, piano - Symphony no 6 in F op.68 "Pastorale" - The Austrian Symphony Orchestra / Karl Randolph (a) & Kurt Woss (b) (MONO, rec. c. 1950-52)
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BRC-1852 Busch Eroica
F.Busch / Tonkuenstler. Niederoesterr. Beethoven Symph 3 Fricsay / BPO Beethoven Symph 1 Lehmann / Bamberg SO Bellini Norma Ovt.
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BRC-2360 Dvorak Cassado Woss Singer
Dvorak Cello Concerto in B minor op.104 - Gaspar Cassado, cello - The Austrian Symphony Orchestra / Kurt Woss - Symphony no 9 in E minor op.95 "New World" - The Symphony Orchestra of the Viennese Symphonic Society / George Singer (MONO, rec.c. 1952)
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BRC-2361 Tchaikovsky 6 H. Arthur Brown
Tchaikovsky: The Tempest, symphonic fantasy(*) - Vienna Symphony Orchestra / Zoltan Fekete - Symphony no 6 in B minor op.74 "Pathetique" - Symphony Orchestra of the Viennese Symphonic Society / H. Arthur Brown (MONO, rec. 1953* & 1951)
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BRC-2796 Spalding Beethoven Brahms
Albert Spalding plays Beethoven and Brahms Violin Concertos - The Austrian Symphony Orchestra / Wilhelm Loibner (MONO, rec. 1952)
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BRC-2818 Bruckner 3 Fekete
Bruckner: Symphony no. 3 in D minor (1890 rev.Bruckner/Schalk) - Salzburg Mozarteum Orchestra / Zoltan Fekete (MONO)
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BRC-2872 Dvorak 8 Grieg Thor Johnson
Dvorak: Symphony no 4 (8) in G major, op.88 - Grieg: Sigurd Jorsalfar Suite - Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra / Thor Johnson (MONO, rec.1953 & 1954)
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BRC-2880 Brahms 1 H. Arthur Brown
Brahms: Symphony no.1 in C minor op.68 - The Austrian Symphony Orchestra / H. Arthur Brown (MONO, rec. 1951)
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BRC-2935 Beethoven Sonatas Demus
Jorg Demus plays Beethoven Piano Sonatas op 109 & 110 (MONO, rec. 1951)
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BRC-2959 Chopin PC1 Kilenyi
Edward Kilenyi: Chopin Piano Concerto no 1 in E minor opus 11 - The Austrian Symphony Orchestra / Felix Prohaska (MONO, rec. 1952)
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BRC-2960 Kilenyi Liszt Chopin
Edward Kilenyi: Liszt Piano Concerto no 1 in E flat / Todtentanz - Chopin The 14 Waltzes (complete) - RIAS Symphony Orchestra / Jonel Perlea (MONO, rec. 1953)
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BRC-3264 Sheherazade H. Arthur Brown
Rimsky-Korsakoff: Sheherazade, symph. suite op.35 - The Austrian Symphony Orchestra [Vienna SO] - H. Arthur-Brown (MONO, rec. 1952-53)
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BRC-3459 Spalding plays Brahms
Brahms: Sonata no.1, op.78 - Hungarian Dances (selection) - Albert Spalding, vl - Ernst v. Dohnanyi (Sonata) & Anthony Kooiker (Dances), pno (MONO/MSE Processed, rec. early 1950s)
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BRC-3627 Beethoven Emperor(Karrer/Woss)-Liszt/Chopin(Barere)
Beethoven PnoCto5"Emperor"-Felicitas Karrer,pno/AustrianSO/K.Woss - Liszt/Chopin Solo Works(Barere)(MONO,rec.1950)
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BRC-3632 Tchaikovsky VlnCto(Auclair/Woss)-PnoCto1(Hansen/Sawalli
Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto op.35*-M.Auclair/AustrianSO/K.Woss-Piano Concerto no.1-C.Hansen/RIAS/Sawallisch (MONO, rec.1951*/1954)
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BRC-3658 Tchaikovsky Symph4-Romeo-Sibelius Finlandia(H.Arthur Br
Tchaikovsky Symph 4*/Romeo-Sibelius Finlandia-Austrian SO/H.Arthur Brown*/K.Woss)(MONO, rec.1951*/1950)
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BRC-3663 Schumann 2(Stokowski)-PnoCto(Chailley-Richez/Heger)
BRC-3663 Schumann Piano Cto (Chailley-Richez / AustrianSO / R.Heger) Symphony 2 (Stokowski / His SO) (MONO, rec. 1951 & 1950)
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BRC-3669 Tchaikovsky 4(Nyazi)-Quadri:Dukas,SSaens,Chabrier
BRC-3669 Tchaikovsky* Symphony 4 (CPO/Nyazi) - A.Quadri conducts French orch. works (RPO) (MONO, rec. ca 1955* & 1954)
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BRC-3729 Haydn Symph 101 (F.Busch) - Brahms Serenade 1 (Heger)
Haydn Symphony no 101 "Clock" (Austrian SO/F.Busch) - Brahms Serenade no.1 (Bamberg/R.Heger) (MONO, rec. 1950 & 1951)
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