Wagner: Tristan und Isolde - Brilioth, Nilsson, Wolff, Meven, Nimsgern; Mehta. Roma, 1972
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While Birgit Nilsson was exiled from the U.S. due to her tax problems, she was still singing very well in Europe. This performance finds her well into her 50s after having weathered a steady diet of Wagner for two decades. It is a true testament to her skills as a vocal technician that she was able to maintain the purity of tone and ease at the top passed the age when most dramatic sopranos had retired. She is joined by Helge Brilioth. Brilioth's tenor is on the lyrical side, but he sings with intelligence and never pushes his tone beyond its means. Peter Meven is very good as is Beverly Wolff as Brangäne (although she could have bothered to learn it better.) Zubin Mehta seems to find the softer grain of the score and brings out some incredibly delicate textures. The sound is superb.