Brahms, Mozart, Sibelius
Well, Szell's Schubert's 9th (Epic lp and Sony cd) gives me the incisiveness and drive I prefer over all other interpretations I've heard. On the other hand, Walter's Brahms gives me the lyricism or poetry Szell's Brahms comparatively misses here. But I'm not about to over generalize. For me, a lot is based on nuances---how and how much I am moved by them. Not long ago I listened to a Tokyo performance of the Sibelius' Second given by Szell/Cleveland just prior to the conductor's death in 1970. Frankly, I was amazed at the difference in interpretation between this and Szell's 1965 Concertgebouw Second on Philips. It was like night and day. To me, the latter reading heaved and lurched, the former soared and inspired. Rigidity? lack of emotion? No. Szell is often accused of both...And try something else: Szell's Columbia/Sony Dvorak Seventh. Listen to the second movement poco adagio. Coldness? No. I hear emotional warmth. I'll say no more for now.