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HT 25 Best Albums of 2010: Numbers 6-10

For the second consecutive year at Hidden Track, we concocted our innovative little experiment for the year-end Best Albums 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 well over 100 nominees, whereby most everything our contributors recommended made the list. Then we invited our crew of writers to independently and blindly vote on the whole list on a scale of 1 to 20 (20 = five stars). We ended up with varying degrees of familiarity with the nominees as some folks voted on just about everything, while some just a few. From there, we deployed our egghead algorithm for rating albums: (two times the average rating) + (the total number of votes). At that point, we took the top 25 highest scores and presto: the Hidden Track 25 Best Albums of 2010. No bullshit, no big opinions; just the results.

We’ve got just ten albums to go on our week long countdown, let’s check out albums number 6-10…

10) Beach HouseTeen Dream

Key Tracks: Zebra, 10 Mile Stereo and Norway

Sounds Like: The music a female version of Neil Young would make while fighting the effects of Ambien

The Skinny: Beach House’s Sub-Pop debut, the band’s third full-length album, showed a major progression in the band’s sound as the duo of Victoria Legrand and Alex Scally put together an album of dreamy originals that draws you in during the first few seconds of opening track Zebra and doesn’t let you go until the final notes of the closing Take Care. In between, Legrand and Scally take us on a tour of diverse soundscapes with layer upon layer of goodness that you’d never expect from a two-some. Whether using organs, slide guitar, or lush harmonies – Beach House put together a masterpiece of atmospheric rock.

READ ON for the next four albums in our countdown…

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Pullin’ ‘Tubes: Year Of The Dog

It’s been quite the year so far for psych-pop revivalists Dr. Dog with the release of their critically acclaimed, and quite possibly their best studio album to date – Shame,

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The B List: Top Six Of The First Six

With the first six months of 2010 beginning to feel like a distant memory, I figured it was time to continue a tradition by taking a look at my favorite six albums of the first half of the year with the Top 6 Of The First 6.

6) CornershopJudy Sucks A Lemon For Breakfast

Cornershop sure seem to like taking their time in releasing studio albums, managing only two in the 13 years since their critically acclaimed When I Was Born For The 7th Time came out in 1997. At points you almost forget the band still exists. For the group’s first full-length since 2002, the Brit-pop act returned with another album full of their unique blend of British Invasion rock, mixed with sitars, eclectic samples and sound collages. The LP includes a fantastic cover of Manfred Mann’s version of The Mighty Quinn and the soaring 16-plus minute psychedelic-gospel-funk-soul jam Turned On Truth.

READ ON for more of my Top 6 Of The First 6…

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Review: Dr. Dog & Deer Tick @ Terminal 5

Dr. Dog & Deer Tick @ Terminal 5 – May 15

If I was forced into seeing one concert, and one concert only in 2010, I may very well have picked the double-bill of Dr. Dog and Deer Tick that took place at Terminal 5 in NYC last month. I’ve repeatedly championed these two acts, not only for their stellar studio work, but also for putting on great live shows – albeit with quite different approaches. Both bands, who had been on the road together for several weeks, pulled into the spacious venue located on a desolate industrial stretch of Manhattan’s Upper West Side for a sold-out, tour-ending show that saw both bands expressing their affinity for each other throughout the evening’s festivities.

[All Photos By Jeremy Gordon]

Sporting their finest sundresses for the occasion, the boys of Deer Tick ambled onto the stage to the strains of Frank Sinatra’s New York, New York. The group’s always entertaining frontman John McCauley crooned the last few bars and greeted the rapidly filling venue by declaring the band Dr. Dog’s prom dates for the night before launching into the winding guitar intro of Easy. McCauley & Co., who will release their third studio album The Black Dirt Sessions next Tuesday and are primed for a breakout year of their own, managed to turn a truncated 45-minute set into a free-wheeling showcase of their boozy, country-infused, folk-rock.

READ ON for more on Jeff’s thoughts on the night…

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Baseball Preview: Zach Miller – Dr. Dog

With the 2010 baseball season in full swing, we wanted to continue a Hidden Track tradition started in 2007 where we chat with of our favorite musicians about their love for America’s past time. For the first part of this year’s Baseball Preview, we asked them for predictions on the 2010 season, while the second part of our questionnaire gets a bit more personal.

Coming out of the bullpen in for this late inning entry in the 2010 Hidden Track Baseball Preview lineup is Dr. Dog’s keyboard player – Zach Miller. We spoke with Zach about his beloved Phillies, his thoughts on the upcoming season, his favorite ballpark and many other subjects. Check it out…

Hidden Track: What team do you think will win the World Series?

Zach Miller: Hmmm. I’m not good at predictions but as a Phillies fan I have to say they have an awesome team and I think they’ll win the World Series again. I’ll be rooting for them. I think Chase Utley is due for MVP. He’s always been a solid player and he’s been hitting with a lot of power these past few seasons.

HT: What’s your favorite baseball team?

ZM: Phillies are my favorite team.

READ ON for more of our baseball convo with Zach of Dr. Dog…

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Video: Dr. Dog – Stranger

Last week Philadelphia’s own pyschedelic pop-rockers Dr. Dog released their latest and quite possibly their greatest album yet – Shame, Shame. To celebrate the release the band stopped by Late

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Bloggy Goodness: The Last From Cash

When uber-producer Rick Rubin first started working with Johnny Cash in the mid-’90s the country legend’s career was in a bit of a lull. The pair’s first album together, American

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