elvis perkins in dearland

Video: Hacienda – Younger Days

As My Morning Jacket is set to kick off their five-night, full album residency tonight at New York’s cavernous Terminal 5, we wanted to remind everyone to head in early

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Bloggy Goodness: The Cars To Reunite?

Call it a sign of the times, but rumors that The Cars will reunite began to surface earlier this week after the seminal pop-rock band posted this picture to their

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HT 25 Best Albums of 2009: Numbers 11-15

This year at Hidden Track, we concocted a little experiment for our year-end Best Albums of 2009 list. Instead of picking the old fashioned way – subjectively – we opted for something a little different: a collaborative, collective list that incorporates the opinions of everybody here at HT.

To begin, we devised an all-encompassing list of around 100 nominees and populated it in a Google spreadsheet – essentially anything that anybody who writes for Hidden Track liked at all, made the list. Then we invited our crew of writers to independently vote on the whole list (omitting anything unfamiliar) on a scale of 1 to 20 (20 = five stars). We ended up with 33 voters with varying degrees of familiarity with the nominees; some folks voted on just about everything, while some just a few. From there, we eliminated anything that did not receive at least three votes, calculated the average scores, and sorted it. We took the top 25 scores and presto: the Hidden Track 25 Best Albums of 2009. No bullshit, no big opinions; just the results.

Let’s check out numbers 15 through 11 and see what made the cut…

15) Elvis Perkins In DearlandElvis Perkins in Dearland

Key Tracks: Hey, Chains Chains Chains, Doomsday

Sounds Like: Part marching band, Part Dylan-esque folk-rock

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Skinny: Perkins sophomore effort is more of a complete representation of what he and his band In Dearland sound like. The combo’s “antique music” can best be summed up as equal parts ramshackle folk and Sousa marching band, making it virtually impossible at times to keep you from from tapping your feet along to songs like Hey, I Heard Your Voice In The Dresden and Doomsday with Perkins’ vivid lyrics as the guide.

READ ON for the next four albums in our week long countdown…

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Review: Halloween Midnight Ramble

Originally, the purpose for The Midnight Rambles at Levon Helm’s Woodstock home-recording studio – otherwise referred to as The Barn – was to serve as a way for the legendary drummer of The Band to recoup money from his mounting medical bills after battling and overcoming throat cancer. Helm’s iconic and unmistakable voice was down to barely a raspy whisper after radiation treatments which forced him into resting his vocal chords.

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While he had to rely on his capable band to provide the vocals, Helm was able to return to his signature perch behind his drum kit for what must have provided a cathartic release till he was ultimately able to sing again. Over the years the legend of the Rambles have grown, with everyone from Elvis Costello to Dr. John to Donald Fagen to former bandmate Garth Hudson showing up and sitting in with Levon.

When an invite was extended to head upstate to take in a night at The Barn, as a monster fan of The Band I was salivating at the opportunity to see Levon in such an intimate and undeniably unique setting. Since I couldn’t make it out to Indio for Festival 8, a Halloween Midnight Ramble was the next logical choice. Pulling into the sleepy town of Woodstock in the late afternoon on an overcast and rainy late fall day, we were greeted to a full-on Halloween parade by the locals in the streets of the small downtown area that helped to set the tone and atmosphere for the rest of the evening.

READ ON for more of Jeff’s All Hallow’s Eve experience…

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Tour Dates: ZZ Top Pick Up Dates

With legendary rockers Aerosmith forced to cancel the remainder of their summer tour due to the severe injuries that lead singer Steven Tyler suffered after a fall from the stage

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The B List: Top 6 Of The First 6

With the first six months of 2009 beginning to feel like a distant memory, figured it was time to continue with a tradition we started last year around this time, by taking a look at my favorite albums from the first half of the year with a little something we’ve dubbed Top 6 Of The First 6.


Maybe I’m getting old, but this list is dominated by mainly roots and Americana-tinged albums, so for those of you expecting Animal Collective somewhere here you may be sorely disappoint. So let’s get at it…

6. Conor Oberst & The Mystic Valley BandOuter South

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Outer South may technically be Conor Oberst’s second “solo” release in as many years, but it would be hard to call this record a true solo effort. While Oberst’s prolific songwriting tendencies may rival that of Mr. Mandy Moore, his latest effort with the Mystic Valley Band is a collaborative affair, with band members contributing and singing their own songs often making you forget you’re listening to a record that has the wordy, singer-songwriter’s name attached to it. The album itself is chocked full of breezy, ’70s influenced country and folk-rock, mixed with the aughts indie-sensibility making it hard to avoid giving them the tag of an updated version of the Traveling Wilburys.

READ ON for the rest of Jeff’s Top 6 Of The First 6…

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Tour Dates: Mott The Hoople Turn 40

As has become par for the course in recent years, reunion-mania is sweeping the music world. The latest group that to join the fold is ’70s glam-rockers Mott The Hoople

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CMJ Music Fest: Bowery Ballroom, New York, NY 11.1.06

CMJ (NYC’s annual music fest) came in like a lion, roared like a lion and left like – yup, you got it – a lion. The whirlwind of fantastic jams set the foundation for the Wednesday night show at Bowery Ballroom. Chock Full O’ Bands that are in various stages of their journey on a streetcar named fame, there was a bevy of talent packing the house for seven hours of music. While tag wearing hipsters skedaddled about the city, your faithful narrator got a spot on the ballroom floor and has a review of each of these acts presented here, because all are worthy of praise and your attention:

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