Above 3 kHz steep slopes in head-related transfer functions cue front, back and above directions, supporting Blauert's theory of directional bands. The lower-frequency directional bands are based on azimuth-dependent level variations. If they can provide reliable front-back discrimination there must be a link with the vestibular organs. A simple experiment not only supplies evidence that it is so, but also that associative memory plays an important role. The seemingly inconsistent ways in which front-back confusions used to manifest in dummy-head stereo become understandable with these new insights.
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