Originally Posted by gratefulshrink
I'm just not getting your "bottom line". I am usually a pragmatist. I realize their are biases and limitations in music criticism/appreciation, and that attempts to be purely objective in the assessment of "quality" will be influenced by subjectivity (i.e., taste). But I also expect that an expert (or a panel of experts) will be less biased by subjectivity than an armchair critic. So I trust that trained critics are going on more than whether they like something when they rate it on some scale.
But are you saying that there is no difference at all between subjective response to music and objective critique of music?
In this idea, if, objective criticism aside, you find yourself subjectively responding (arise of feelings for example) to the music and enjoy it, then what you call objective criticism does not matter anymore, as the final most important question asked is answered.
This is why you set your own standards of music, and why an expert cannot be totally objective in his opinion because you will react to music differently, wether you're objectively criticising or simply subjectively responding in a positive way or negative way to what you're hearing.
What sounds good varies from people to people, depends on life experience and influences, and musical quality should not only be judged by objective criticism but also by subjective response because in the end it is probably what matters most, as you usually begin to enjoy a certain music because of the positive subjective reponse to it, not by whatever objective criticism you can make, as such critics are hard to make the first time you listen to a song.