Issue 185 July 2020
With 2020 Now Half-Way Through....
It's only half-way through the year as I write this and we've already had fire tornadoes, COVID-19, Ebola, riots, lockdowns, economic meltdowns and murder hornets. I'd say 'who knows what the next six months will bring?' but frankly even if it's man-eating kittens and the zombie apocalypse, it's unlikely anyone would be that surprised by what 2020 throws at them. And yet, perhaps one calming constant in all this has been music, preferably played well on good replay equipment.
Yes it sounds like the clunkiest of openers, but there's more at play here. People have been experiencing vivid lockdown dreams, those goals set in March mostly didn't happen by June, we fear watching the news because the world has gone mad, and we don't tune into social media because that has gone even madder. We have all the time to catch up on reading those great novels, yet our concentration is so shot, many might struggle to even finish this sen
Music, on the other hand, has become an important sidekick to us all. In chat with a 'civilian' who previously only poured scorn on classical music, he admitted that he can only sleep at night if he spends an hour listening to Mozart. On the other hand, a family member who spends most of his life listening to Sibelius has developed a penchant for Tool. Whether these changes will sustain past this time of strangeness is unclear, but our trickster brains are having fun with our solitary soundtrack.
William Congreve said, "Music has charms to soothe a savage breast. Music has the power to enchant even the roughest of people." While that might be a little harsh on 'the roughest of people', in our current despondency, it's worth remembering that compared to Congreve's time, today we have a musical library that would make a Hapsburg prince turn green with envy. Remember that when times get weird and tough!
As we went to press, we learned of the confirmation of the sad passing of Allen Boothroyd. The industrial designer behind the striking Lescon amplifiers of the 1970s, the distinctive casing for the BBC Micro computer of the 1980s, Boothroyd was co-founder of Boothroyd-Stuart Meridian and was design director of Meridian Audio until his death in late March this year. Our thoughts are with his family and friends.
Congratulations to Bing Teng and Sergei Adamovic, who each win an excellent 1.8m Allnic ZL-5000 15A power cord, and to Marcelo Costa, from Brazil, who wins the outstanding Meze Audio RAI Penta universal-fit in-ear monitors from our recent competitions.