V2602. IN MEMORIAM ALFRED SEISER, incl. Alfred Grünfeld; Marie Gutheil-Schoder; André Maréchal; Francesco Tamagno; Béla Guttmann; Mizzi Günther; Alexander Girardi; Aennie Dirkens; Johannes Semfke [better-known as Johannes Sembach]; Emil Winter-Tymian; Carl W. Drescher; Rudolph Hofbauer; Celestina Boninsegna [unknown recording]; Arthur Preuss; Leopold Demuth; Betty Schubert; Erik Schmedes [unknown test - Tristan]; Else Gieger & Oskar Braun; Karl Meister; Leo Slezak; Hermine Kittel; Josefina Huguet, Fernando De Lucia & Antonio Pini-Corsi; Alexis Boyer; Beatrix Kernic; Hermann Bachmann; Vilma Medgyaszay [the very young cabaret singer Medgyaszay, before her recordings with Bartók]; Grete Forst; Louis Treumann & Elli Wolf; Lucie König; Teréz Krammer [not totally unlike the same composer's 'Hunyádi László']; Franz Wolfert; Maria Galvany [displaying a solid legato and full-bodied warm tone for the most part of this otherwise unknown and untraceable Pietro Duffau waltz song, easily mistaken for an early electric recording!]; Hermann Schramm; Elisabeth Ohlhoff; Fritz Werner; Leonid V. Sobinov; Joseph Josephi; Mizzi Günther, Lizzi Latour & Louis Treumann; Paul Knüpfer; Karel Burian; Torsten Lennartsson; August Bockmann; László Asszonyi; Eleanor Jones-Hudson & Peter Dawson; Ernest Pike & Peter Dawson; Sydney Coltham [I'll sing thee songs of Araby]; Fiorello Giraud [a real curiosity that this creator of Canio never thought of recording any of that character's music which would surely have suited his Latin temperament and vocal equipment much better than this quintessentially French 'Jocelyn!], etc. [Spectacular audio restorations which are so startlingly clear and lifelike, living proof that even the earliest type of gramophone was very well able to record bowed and plucked string instruments, and certainly the human voice!] (Germany) 2-Truesound Transfers 4010, recorded 1899-1917. Transfers by Christian Zwarg.
“I have no idea what techniques Christian Zwarg uses…but I would say that these are the best transfers of early recordings that I have heard….he has unlocked a depth, roundness, presence and detail that I have never heard before – even the orchestral and piano accompaniments approximate fairly closely to the real thing. He also has managed to reduce surface noise on all but the very earliest recordings to little more than a quiet background rustle without in any way compromising the high frequencies, and even on records which he says are quite badly worn, there is almost no evidence of the wear in the transfers….on some tracks it was like hearing the record properly for the first time….I found revelatory…Sobinov’s MAY NIGHT aria…the tonal body which is revealed by Zwarg makes me realise what was missing before – I really felt that I was hearing Sobinov’s voice properly for the first time….Who would have expected a Viennese collector to have a Zonophone of Sidney Coltham? I have long been very fond of this singer and made extensive A/B comparisons between my original pressing and this transfer, and the difference is simply staggering….This entirely unexpected track made the biggest impact on me of all the items….I cannot recommend this set too highly….Don’t hesitate!”
- Paul Steinson, THE RECORD COLLECTOR, 2020