Interestingly, this sense of heightened lucidity is not is not imposed on the music from outside. Sometimes when auditioning cables it is hard to escape a feeling that a cable is keeping a lid on things in the interests of coherence. Here, in contrast, you sense that the music is more dramatic and interesting because everything has relaxed into its proper place, any nervousness or edginess has gone, as has any sense of overt ‘control’, to be replaced by a natural ease and freedom – truly wonderful for conveying a big jazz band at the top of its game.
The Genimides loudspeaker cable behave entirely like the interconnects, suggesting a commonality of design. Dynamics are not simply big and bold, but expressive and decisive: not dynamics for dynamics’ sake, but part of the essence and vitality of the music. Moreover, there is never any worry that these dynamics will overwhelm proceedings, even when the system is playing at my customary neighbour-baiting levels, which can occasionally trip up a system. The speaker cable lets timing stay resolutely solid, instruments play together from deepest bass to tinkliest triangle, so that it is easy to get into that zone where you lose yourself in the music and stop listening to the sound it makes.
Borstlap’s piano articulation is now exquisitely judged and controlled, contributing to the sheer insistence of the music, which derives its sense of forward motion not just from the beat, but from an awareness that each phrase has a destination, a way to carry the listener along to the next line. The countless little dynamic pushes and inflections all add their own unobtrusive little contribution to the whole, and the Audiomicas are instrumental in allowing the system to get all this information into the room, intact.
Tom Waits voice on ‘Georgia Lee’ from Mule Variations [ANTI-] is truly affecting. When he sings, “Why wasn’t God watching?” you can sense the heartbreak. Most systems render this as schmaltz, but the Audiomicas gave me pathos.
Taken together, the Audiomica interconnects and loudspeaker cables allow the system to breathe freely with little sense of constraint. Yet this isn’t a licence to run riot, everything just takes its place and doesn’t intrude where it isn’t wanted. It’s a freedom from smear, hash, bloom, or other artefacts, which I’ve rarely heard, and it is very, very beguiling. Yet this isn’t a cable which wants you to love it because it sounds lovely. It just is what it is, and if your music is gnarly and raucous, a bit of The Bad Plus perhaps, then the Audiomicas just present that music a bit gnarlier and, er, raucouser.