I have been very fond of Abbado. He is a balanced conductor who brings out the lyrical and dramatic sides of a work. His music making improves with time and has stayed remarkably constant across the recordings I've heard.
I own many recordings of him in core repertoire. I have the maroon Beethoven symphonies box, his Chicago version of the Berlioz Fantastique, his Brahms cycle, his DG Dvorak New World and his Mendelssohn cycle. Each of them are gems in my opinion, especially his maroon Beethoven box.
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