How many times do we finally get our hands on a much-hyped recording.........only to find out it is a disappointment. (Kleiber's Beethoven 5 anyone?)
But sometimes, we find out the recording is everything it is cracked up to be. A few weeks ago, I got hold of the much-praised Tennstedt Mahler 2 with the LPO (live, 1992). I wasn't expecting much. Could it really be everything it was cracked up to be? Could it really offer more than the other Mahler 2s in my collection - Chailly with the Concertgebouw, Rattle with Berlin and the CBSO, Tilson Thomas with San Fransisco, Jurowski with the LPO, Abbado with Lucerne........?
Well, I was wrong. It was astounding. It took about thirty seconds to realise it was in a different league to anything I had heard before. I have listened to it repeatedly since then and I still can't quite believe how good it is. All other versions seem prosaic and earth-bound in comparison.
This time the hype was justified - for me, anyway.
Has anyone else come across a much-praised recording which actually turned out to be worth the hype?