Is it possible to touch the sound we hear? Of course not, but sometimes when we close our eyes music seems real enough we're surprised no musicians are in the room. Such is the the level of realism occasionally achieved, and then mostly with small groups recorded perfectly.
One recent evening a good friend and I chatted over a single malt; Lagavulin I believe. He told me our quest to accurately recreate the sound of live musicians into our home has always been a tough one, perhaps something we can never achieve on a consistent basis - our ear brains may never believe the New York Philharmonic is actually ten feet in front of us - though it is a lofty goal.
And then he told me an interesting story. Spending time in Chicago's Orchestra Hall as a student, he was afforded the opportunity to bring a stereo system on stage. Electro Voice loudspeakers and an adequate amplification system were mounted where musicians would normally play, and a live tape recording played through them. He told me the sound filled the hall and surprised him with its perfection. It was hard to know if it was real or Memorex with eyes closed. Yet that same system in a smaller room would not come close to fooling anyone.
And there it is, the room again.