Bruckner: Symphony No. 8 in C minor

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LABELS: Philips
WORKS: Symphony No. 8 in C minor
PERFORMER: Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra/Eduard van Beinum
CATALOGUE NO: 442 730-2 ADD (1955)
It is good to see a reissue of this recording by van Beinum, that most mild- mannered and humble Dutch conductor, whose successor at the helm of the Concertgebouw Orchestra was the similarly-tempered Bernard Haitink. It was made in 1955, four years before van Beinum’s death in rehearsal at the age of 57. The performance is the antithesis of the exaggerated Romantic approach of van Beinum’s predecessor, Mengelberg. His strings (including a large number of violas) produce a striking sound, for which he was renowned. On the strength of this disc (and an excellent Seventh made in 1953) van Beinum was a formidable Brucknerian. Recommended. Christopher Fifield