Become a member and get exclusive access to articles, live sessions and more!
Start Your Free Trial

Sound Pundits

JazzTimes may earn a small commission if you buy something using one of the retail links in our articles. JazzTimes does not accept money for any editorial recommendations. Read more about our policy here. Thanks for supporting JazzTimes.
Art Dudley of Stereophile
Robert Harley, The Absolute Sound and The Perfect Vision

What more irrelevant thing could you do for a living than write about hi-fi? It’s a pretty goofy thing to do.” Wow! I would certainly never make such a flip remark, but the sometimes-controversial audio observer/reviewer Art Dudley did, and he means it-sort of.

Dudley-who currently writes for Stereophile, but once served as editor of The Absolute Sound in addition to running his own audio magazine, the much-respected Listener, which faded into the halls of audio fame a couple of years ago-proposes that reviewers and consumers should listen to the musical attributes of a system and not its sonic virtues. And while most current writers on the scene pay lip service to this idea, the large majority continue to converse in a lexicon foreign to folks who just want to hear a believable reproduction of the scorching intensity of a Sonny Rollins solo. Micro-dynamics, soundstage depth, transparency, air, grain, smearing, holographic and so on-what does any of this have to do with music? And what do these audio savants know that our ears and souls can’t detect?

Start Your Free Trial to Continue Reading

Become a JazzTimes member to explore our complete archive of interviews, profiles, columns, and reviews written by music's best journalists and critics.
Originally Published