Finding authentic Viennese-styled performances of the music of Johann Strauss II and his family can be difficult, unless one goes directly to the recordings of Willi Boskovsky, a conductor who was fully a part of Viennese culture and who brought the proper lilt and rhythmic buoyancy to this light music. His mid-twentieth century recordings of Strauss' waltzes and polkas with the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra are classics that listeners have valued for years and are frequently played as an effervescent accompaniment to New Year's festivities. These recordings were first issued on London/Decca, yet they are frequently reissued by budget labels, in different configurations. However, the ubiquity of Boskovsky's performances does not detract from their musical quality, and even though these analog recordings date from the 1950s, '60s, and '70s, the sound has held up quite well and will be enjoyable to all except the most critical ears. Gathered in this volume are four perennial hits -- Tales from the Vienna Woods, Bahn Frei Polka, Radetzky March, and Perpetuum Mobile -- along with 11 other Strauss gems, including contributions from Eduard, Josef, and Johann Strauss I that are just as engaging, if somewhat less frequently played, than those of Johann, Jr. This Musical Heritage Society disc is part of a three-CD reissue from 2009, Vienna Philharmonic Plays Strauss, which covers the Waltz King's most popular pieces.
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AllMusic Review by Blair Sanderson
Stürmisch in Lieb' und Tanz (Stormy in Love and Dance), polka schnell for orchestra, Op. 393 (RV 393)