LugBug, I cannot agree with you more on your input here.
I think for peeps who love going to concerts and the thrill i gives, no hifi experience can recreate this. Headphones for e.g will give you a brilliant window onto the music to study more closely, but this is unrealistic in the sense that all the great symphonies/operas were written for a concert hall in mind. With no microphones, only room acoustic. If Beethoven could have used studio's and placed mic's would he have wrote in the same manner that he did, with massive layers of strings and timpani? Recording studios can do what they like to change/manipulate the sound to emphasize certain aspects or dull others but in the concert hall you get the orchestra in front of you (if you have good seat) warts n'all and the cellos come from where the cello's are and the soprano sounds where she is on stage. And when the crescendo builds with the orchestra in full swing, you feel the vibrations through your whole body and feel the music like you are part of it. It's real and tangible.
Oh well, back to my LCD2's .... :)