The clickety-clack sound of a New York City subway brings back an instant sensation of the smell and surroundings that go along with it. That screeching metal sound, paired with the semi-quiet sense of calm that occurs just before a train comes roaring through the station. Cold winter mornings and dirty tile steps lead down to the underground urban cave that gives off warmth reminiscent of being deep inside of a compost pile; unsure of whether or not the air is clean (it isn’t) but most appreciative of being warm.
There’s no city quite like New York.
Triangulating audio fills the air, hearing the clearest set of speakers I’ve ever owned filling the surrounding air. I remember sitting in the top floor of a high-end audio store in Columbus (the name slips my memory). The way the store worked, the caliber – and price – of their stereo systems went up with every flight of stairs you climbed. To put it into perspective, the inventory on their first floor was on par (if not better) than the high-end audio you listen to at Best Buy’s ‘expensive audio’ area.
Hardwood floors and a couch in the center of the room. Two large speakers, woofers, mids, and tweeters exposed, stood in the middle of the room like statuesque idols. Thick, thick audio cables ran across the wooden floors of the room and connected into a stack of receivers worth more than many people make in a year (or several). The couch, poised perfectly in the center of the room at the peak of the audio triangulation, carefully measured with the help of audio meters. Sitting on the center of that couch and hearing music, as if for the first time, you realize how much of a difference a good set of speakers can make. In that moment, I was a convert and vowed to always be an audiophile.
It’s not just plugging in a wire to a wood box and listening to music. It’s the pursuit of purity and depth; discovering new levels in a world most commonly left undiscovered by many who enter it.
It’s beautiful, hearing Coltrane in new ways that I’ve never experienced.
It takes great talent to play music and a similar set of talents in order to hear it properly.
Featured image from Deviantart