Gunter Wand believed fervently in keeping a low musical profile. He revered the classic composers and would never insult them by intruding his own interpretations. There's another form of reverence, of course, which involves giving your heart and soul to an interpretation, but he wasn't of that school. If you like Wand's humility, these well played, sincere readings in live concert from Hamburg are very pleasant.
Wand is understated in Beethoven's Sym. #1 and 2, playing them for Haydnesque lightness and a lilting gait. The best thing for me is the recorded sound, placing us right next to the podium and catching every bit of inner detail. As to style, Wand was a traditionalist, so all the tempos and phrasing is strictly middle of the road. There's a bit of slacking off in the scherzo of Sym. #1, and nothing special happens in any ohter movement. Sym. #2 fares better, with a lovely flowing account of the ineffable Larghetto and good balances throughout.
But I don't want to hide in the bushes. Pleasant as these readings are, they don't hold a candle to Walter, Karajan, Bernstein, Klemperer, Abbado, Rattle, or half a dozen other conductors who are far beyond Wand's league. I realize that a coterie of critics has decided to lift him up to their heights, but nothing here persudes me that they are right.