V2089. THE EDISON LEGACY, Vol. II, Unpublished Treasures of the Edison Archive, incl. Carlo Albani, Marie Delna, Adelina Agostinelli, Carlo Albani, Andrés de Segurola, Maria Galvany, Heinrich Hensel, Giuseppe Kaschmann, Paola Koralek, Oreste Benedetti, Celestina Boninsegna, Italo Cristalli, Pompilio Malatesta, Eleanora de Cisneros, Heinrich Hensel, Umberto Macnez, Marie Rappold, Carolina White, Domenico Viglione-Borghese & Leo Slezak. 3-Marston 53014, recorded 1910-12. Transfers by Ward Marston. - 638335301426
“These two sets, the most important historical vocal releases in my lifetime of 70 years, have many lessons for us….The recorded sound is exceptional, as far as the voices are concerned. The accompaniments are pushed a little into the background but I imagine this order of priorities will offend few vocal buffs. Virtually everything here, by names such as Bori, Delna, Destinn, Hempel and Kaschmann, is previously unpublished….From the distinguished baritone Domenico Viglione-Borghese we have his first two records, hitherto unknown….These are good souvenirs of a worthwhile singer. Much of the excitement generated by these Edison sets concerns the American soprano Carolina White, previously unknown to me. Had she not abandoned opera in 1914, aged 29, she would have given Rosa Ponselle a real run for her money….She is a real discovery for me….Handel’s ‘Sweet Bird’ is a good souvenir of Frieda Hempel, with lovely trills, her only Handel I think: the duetting with an unnamed flautist is celestial. Tenor Valentin Jaume displays his forward production and good enunciation in a single ‘O Paradis!’….We hear lovely, vibrant singing from the great Carmen Melis in ‘Io son l’umile ancella’ from ADRIANA LECOUVREUR, complete with its introduction and recitative. Though Tosti’s ‘Io son l’amore’ is not one of his best songs, she is persuasive….Four unpublished tracks by the wonderful Marie Delna [offer] the Letter Scene from WERTHER [which] again brings the best out of her, with glowing tone, natural phrasing and total immersion in the rôle….Aged 60 [de Segurola] has quite a tremolo but still commands a lovely tone and a fine legato. ‘Sei vindicata assai’, with its recitative, is very well sung in the old bel canto style, with a delectable morendo at the end of the first verse….Presentation is up the usual Marston standards, with quite a chunky biography of each singer. The sound quality is nearly always superb and often startling. And there is more to come!”
- Tully Potter, THE RECORD COLLECTOR, 2013
"This three CD set[priced as 2 CDs] marks the next installment of the historically significant release of unpublished Edison diamond disc masters. Thomas Edison, inventor of the phonograph, began his own recording company in 1898, and for the next 14 years, he released only wax cylinder recordings, while by 1905, most other companies were using the more practical flat disc format. By 1909, the cylinder was a dying medium, and Edison realized that his company needed to compete in the disc market. Consequently, he strove to produce a better-sounding disc than any of his competitors. For over three years, he made disc recordings before publishing any. Over a hundred of these wax disc masters still exist in the Edison archive, unheard by anyone until now. These recordings contain not only some very fine singing, but also, some of the best sound to be heard on acoustic recording."
- Ward Marston