When you listen to a copy of Houses with the kind of resolution and transparency found on the best Hot Stamper pressings you really gain a deep understanding of just what a production genius Jimmy Page was back in the day.
To take just one example, listen to how clearly the multi-tracked guitars can be heard in the different layers and areas of the soundstage. On some songs you will have no trouble picking out three, four and even more guitars playing, each with its own unique timbre and character. This clarity allows you to recognize — perhaps for the first time — the special contribution each of those guitars makes to the finished song.
Ultimately the ability to hear into the music at this level is what gives you, the listener, the ability to UNDERSTAND and APPRECIATE it. One reason these commentaries tend to be overly enthusiastic is that once you’ve heard a pressing that sounds as good as the best copies can, you find yourself much more emotionally involved in the music.
When the sound gets better it’s the music that REALLY gets better. That’s Audio 101, the raison d’etre for all the expensive equipment we all own.
When the sound gets to the highest levels, when the sound gets that good, the music practically becomes a drug. Want to take a trip? Drop the needle at the start of The Rain Song or No Quarter on a top copy. You won’t be coming back to earth for about six minutes. See you then.