What To Shop For – 2012

<img src="http://www.qromag.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/whattoshopfor2012sm.jpg" alt="What To Shop For 2012" />The Olympics are over, the election is over, and now it's time to shop. Here are QRO's top-rated reviews from...
What To Shop For 2012
What To Shop For 2012

The Olympics are over, the election is over, and now it’s time to shop. Here are QRO’s top-rated reviews from 2012 (plus some special stocking stuffers):

Albums:

Animal Collective – Centipede Hz
Animal Collective attempt the impossible and follow-up an album labeled a ‘modern classic’. Read More…
Anthony & The Johnsons – Cut the World
Few people have as haunting and beautiful a voice as Antony Hegarty, and perhaps nowhere has that been more prominently featured than on Antony and the Johnsons’ latest album. Read More…
Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti – Mature Themes
Ariel Pink is the ultimate peripheral superstar. Read More…
Rich Aucoin – We’re All Dying To Live
The album has some truly spectacular highs and you can’t say that Aucoin half-assed any of it. Read More…
Beach House – Bloom
The Baltimore duo’s fourth album is yet another magnificent swirl of reverbed bedroom pop. Read More…
Ben Folds Five – The Sound of the Life of the Mind
Ben Folds Five return in full with The Sound of the Life of the Mind. Read More…
Boys Like Girls – Crazy World EP
Boys Like Girls return from their hiatus with Crazy World EP. Read More…
David Byrne & St. Vincent – Love This Giant
Love This Giant can’t be as good as one could hope from such a pairing as David Byrne & St. Vincent – but it also couldn’t be anything less than good. Read More…
Choir of Young Believers – Rhine Gold
Originality rarely rings true in the arts these days when every option seems to have been examined, explored, and experimented. Read more…
Cloud Nothings – Attack On Memory
Cloud Nothings latest effort, Attack On Memory is a startling revelation – an aggressive, emotional paean to youth angst. Read more…
Leonard Cohen – Old Ideas
What can you say about Mr. Cohen? The man is an enigma, and so is the humorously entitled album – his most overtly spiritual record to date. Read more…
Jason Collett : Reckon
Jason Collett has managed to both put out a lot of songs, and a lot of great songs. Read More…
Cynic – Carbon-Based Anatomy EP
That the diverse and mystical little EP Carbon-Based Anatomy slipped under the radar just goes to show how far ahead of the game Cynic remains.. Read more…
Dan Deacon – America
Dan Deacon manages to pull off the supremely ambitious job of tackling something as immense and inexactly defined as America by delivering a piece of work that emulates those exact properties. Read More…
Delta Spirit – Delta Spirit
Delta Spirit grow in a big way as they push upward on their self-titled fourth full-length. Read More…
DIIV – Oshin
It’s unsurprising that Zachary Cole Smith’s solo project DIIV continues to mine the dreamy, melodic guitar aesthetic that threatens to consume indie rock. Read More…
Dinosaur Jr. – I Bet On Sky
What did we ever do without Dinosaur Jr.? Read More…
Dinowalrus – Best Behavior
Dinowalrus build upon their psychedelica, establishing a whole new sound, all of their own. Read more…
Eight and a Half – Eight and a Half
Canada gives us another great indie-rock collaboration in Eight and a Half. Read more…
Ex-Norweigan – House Music
House Music acts as Roger Houdaille’s public list of grievances on the state of the country, popular music, and the world we live in. Read more…
Fist City – It’s 1983, Grow Up!
Fist City comes out swinging on It’s 1983, Grow Up! with their own anti-authority aesthetic for a different millennium. Read More…
John Frusciante – Letur-Left RP
John Frusciante has an uncanny ability to integrate his inherent need to be a total weirdo with being able to make music that both fulfills that need, yet is still quite accessible to the listener. Read More…
Future of the Left – Polymers Are Forever EP
Future of the Left improve with every release. Read More…
Gentleman Reg – Leisure Life, Vol. 1
Gentleman Reg returns to EP work with the first of his three Leisure Life EPs, where he goes for a more indie-pop sound behind his fey vocals. Read More…
Benjamin Gibbard – Former Lives
Death Cab For Cutie frontman stays upbeat on his solo Former Lives. Read More…
Gossip – A Joyful Noise
In Gossip’s A Joyful Noise, we’ve got an electro-rock &amp; -pop uplift for the rest of us. Read more…
Gotye – Making Mirrors
Australia’s celebrated Gotye comes to the States with the American release of Making Mirrors. Read more…
Grimes – Visions
Grimes is an amalgamation of witch-house pop, psychedelic rave and atmospheric bass, but is simultaneously none of the above. Intrigued yet? Read more…
Heems – Nehru Jackets
Das Racist’s Heems has finally released his much-hyped mixtape Nehru Jackets in partnership with SEVA New York, an organization fighting the redistricting of Queens. Read more…
Honeydrum – Do U Party? EP
Honeydrum is essentially pop music, blindingly catchy damaged beyond all recognition pop music, with a dizzying array of commercial references. Read More…
Hoobastank – Fight or Flight
Hoobastank have created quite a name for themselves in the past couple of years since their formation in 1994. Read More…
The Hussy – Weed Seizure
The Hussy have never been known for their subtlety. Read More…
I Like Trains – The Shallows
Possibly the first I Like Trains record (under any name) where you don’t need to know the odd subject matter, The Shallows is their furthest step yet. Read more…
Japandroids – Celebration Rock
Come on and embrace the Celebration Rock. Read More…
Johnny Ill Band – Ask All the Doctors
The Johnny Ill Band sweat together in the Sexagon and create a decidedly laid back, idiosyncratic album. Read more…
Norah Jones – Little Broken Hearts
On her latest album Norah Jones has breathed new life into her music and she had the help of super producer Brian Burton, a.k.a. Danger Mouse. Read more…
Jones Street Station – The Understanding EP
Jones Street Station put out the full EP for The Understanding. Read more…
King Tuff – King Tuff
Kyle Thomas’ diverse activities have informed an album as varied as it is stimulating. Read more…
Liars – WIXIW
Over a decade has passed since the release of Liars first album, a period which has seen the band traverse almost as much distance geographically as they have creatively. Read more…
Metric – Synthetic
Metric aren’t approaching stardom – they’re there. Read more…
Bob Mould – Silver Age
Bob Mould is comfortable in his Silver Age. Read More…
Mumford & Sons – Babel
Staying true to their sound, the four-piece doesn’t stray too far from their first release but steps up by putting out a cleaner, yet raucous punch in Babel. Read More…
The Mystery Jets – Radland
There is no doubt that Radlands marks a new direction for Mystery Jets. Read More…
Willie Nelson – Heroes
As it was originally conceived and manifested, country music is dead. For this reason, that Willie Nelson is still alive and releasing an album is a great thing. Read more…
No Doubt – Push and Shove
It’s been a long ten years, but the brilliant late ‘90s ska band have finally returned. Read More…
Nonpoint – Nonpoint
Nonpoint have certainly made an obviously conscious attempt at a fresh start with their music in every way possible. Read More…
Nude Beach – II
It’s difficult to distance classic rock from its extensive history, which can make these sounds feel like they’ve been all but used up in the past thirty years, but it’s the sincerity of the trio that makes this stand out. Read More…
of Montreal – Daughter of Cloud
Kevin Barnes’ latest curation, Daughter of Cloud, is a rarities album compiled of seventeen previously unreleased tracks from 2007-2012. Read More…
P.S. I Love You – Death Dreams
The layered sound on follow-up disc Death Dreams marks another strong effort for these Canadian wunderkinds. Read More…
Passion Pit – Gossamer
Overall this album is more than anyone was expecting. Read More…
Pause – Pacific Rose
Pacific Rose, while certainly a rap album, also shows off the wider range of skills Pause gleaned over the course of those years. Read More…
A Place To Bury Strangers – Onwards To the Wall EP
It’s safe to say that A Place to Bury Strangers have become the Kings of New York noise rock. . Read More…
A Place To Bury Strangers – Worship
A Place to Bury Strangers have been through a lot of changes, and Worship is a step forward in their career. Read More…
Playwrite – Playwrite EP
Touches of folk, rock, electro and hip-hop come to a beautiful confluence to create accessible, albeit thought provoking, pop. Read More…
Poison Idea – The Fatal Erection Years
Poison Idea’s The Fatal Erection Years highlights the group’s greatest moments and never leaves you disappointed. Read More…
Princeton – Remebrance of Things To Come
Princeton have become something decidedly more. Read More…
Radiohead – The King of Limbs (Live From the Basement)
Radiohead continues to provide charmingly independent music that pleases them as artists, yet appeals to the masses in a way that no other act in the music industry does. Read more…
Bonnie Raitt – Slipstream
Slipstream serves as a reassurance that Bonnie Raitt never went anywhere and that she is just as relevant as ever. Read more…
Fionn Regan – 100 Acres of Sycamore
Ireland has a rich history of weighty storytellers. Fionn Regan, who hails from the island’s east coast, whether it is by nature or culture, has that storytelling prowess. Read more…
Relations – Relations EP
Walking the delicate line of post-punk’s skeletal chill and electronic dance is a difficult thing to balance. Read more…
The Rest – SEESAW
The Rest have now grown up enough to reach for the stars while still able to have their feet on the ground. Read More…
Ringo Deathstarr : Mauve
The great news is that Ringo Deathstarr are prancing free and avoided thetrappings of an over produced album. Read More…
The Roots – Undun
Since becoming the house band for Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, The Roots have become songwriting machines. Read more…
Ty Segall – Singles 2007-2010
These songs are proof that reinventing the formula isn’t necessary, there’s still more to be done with the untouchable elements of blues standards, if you’re as original as Ty Segall. Read more…
Shearwater – Animal Joy
None of Shearwater’s albums has ever disappointed but somehow Animal Joy can be considered their masterpiece. Read more…
The Shins – Port of Morrow
Hardly a prolific group, the wait has been worth it for this collection of modern pop tunes from The Shins. Read more…
Sigur Rós – Valtari
Sigur Rós’ music is the definition of beauty and Valtari is absolutely no exception. Read More…
Paul Simon – Graceland (25th Anniversary Edition)
For reasons I cannot explain, there’s some part of me that wants to listen to Graceland. Read More…
The Smashing Pumpkins – Oceania
The latest Smashing Pumpkins album Oceania is a mixed bag of emotions. Read More…
Soft Swells – Soft Swells
Although Soft Swells is not overly euphoric, it’s a pleasant meander through the sunny California no matter where you listen to it. Read More…
Bruce Springsteen – Wrecking Ball
Wrecking Ball signifies a new direction for ‘The Boss’ – both a homage to his rock balladry, yet a distinctly modern, soulful, gospel-graced, and occasionally R&B-esque record. Read More…
Sugar – Copper Blue & Beaster (Deluxe Edition)
Bit by bit, Bob Mould is reclaiming, re-embracing, and reviving his entire amazing legacy. Read More…
Swans – The Seer
When it comes to Swans you can’t have beauty without the opposite. Read More…
Team Me – To the Treetops!
A bunch of young, enthusiastic multi-instrumentalists let in the studio and trying out everything in a reach of their hands – and more. Read more…
The Temper Trap – The Temper Trap
Someone needs to make a new John Hughes documentary and realize that the soundtrack work is already done for them. Read more…
Thieving Irons – Behold, This Dreamer!
Thieving Irons gets it all just right on Behold, This Dreamer!. Read more…
Train – California 37
Train is a band that may not, under any circumstances, be discounted or disrespected. Read more…
Tom Waits – Bad As Me
When it comes to Tom Waits, one wonders whether he will ever produce any substandard material, and from out of the blue, a masterpiece is drawn. Read More…
The Walkmen – Heaven
After a decade of uncompromising their sharp sound, The Walkmen have perfectly rounded it out. Read More…
M. Ward – A Wasteland Companion
M. Ward, with his cornucopia of musical knowledge and styles, chisels a truly memorable record. Read more…
White Rabbits – Milk Famous
The White Rabbits shift again, and pull it off again. Read more…
Saul Williams – Volcano Sunlight
Saul Williams certainly took a risk with this release, but it paid off. Read more…
Wild Nothing – Nocturne
Nocturne traffics particularly in the touchingly soft glow of the higher eighties New Wave. Read More…
Wintersleep – Hello Hum
Amid a new layer of electronic eccentricity, Wintersleep has finally revisited the excellent form and sound of breakthrough record Welcome To The Night Sky. Read More…
The xx – Coexist
Overnight successes The xx follow-up with Coexist. Read More…
Neil Young & Crazy Horse – Americana
As always, Neil Young is in top form when it comes to his songwriting. Read More…
Yva Las Vegass : I Was Born in a Place of Sunshine and the Smell of Ripe Mangoes
Every performance sounds like it’s reenacting some of that struggle and creating something beautiful along the way. Read More…
Zambri – House of Baasa
On their debut full-length, House of Baasa, New York’s Zambri skillfully mix industrial experiments with dancetronica beats, airy effects, haunting atmospheres, and more. Read More…
The Zoltars – Should I Try Once More?
Should I Try Once More? is a rare example of a move into polished clarity serving to highlight already great songwriting. Read More…
ZZ Top – La Futura
It’s clear that they thought long and hard about new La Futura, putting in the time and effort to push it to its full potential.
Read More…

 

& more:

 

The Beatles – Yellow Submarine DVD
Once upon a time… or maybe twice, there was an unearthly paradise called Pepperland. Read more…
The Beatles - Yellow Submarine DVD
Big Easy Express DVD
Mumford & Sons, Edward & Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros, Old Crow Medicine Show & a cross-country train Buy here…
Big Easy Express DVD
The Black Keys Dress Up Kit
Look (kinda) like your favorite Akron natives! Buy here…
The Black Keys Dress Up Kit
Curren$y ‘Up In Smoke’ Rolling Tray
Roll your blunts like Curren$y. Buy here…
Curren$y 'Up In Smoke' Rolling Tray
The Flaming Lips Hollywood Cemetery Skull
If you missed The Flaming Lips playing the Hollywood Cemetery, you can still get one of the commemorative “Gummy Song” skulls – including marijuana-flavored green brain. Buy here…
The Flaming Lips Hollywood Cemetary Skull
Mike Watt ‘Throbblehead’
Seminal punk rock bassist from Minutemen & fIREHOSE, Mike Watt’s also played with everyone from Iggy Pop to Kelly Clarkson – and now he’s got his own ‘Throbblehead’. Buy here…
Mike Watt Throbblehead

 

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