Hideous reindeer sweaters? Alas, rarely returnable. But unopened CDs are another story. So when well-intentioned friends and family gift you with albums you have — or loathe — think about trading them in (the records, not the relatives) for these recent releases.
IF YOU GOT The latest from the Game, 50 Cent, or the Black Eyed Peas — which you downloaded ages ago EXCHANGE IT FOR Common’s smart, lyrical sixth album, Be (Geffen)
IF YOU GOT Nickelback’s All the Right Reasons, you meat-and-potatoes rocker EXCHANGE IT FOR Queens of the Stone Age’s Over the Years and Through the Woods (Interscope)
IF YOU GOT Carrie Underwood’s so-so Some Hearts, you reality-show softie EXCHANGE IT FOR Nashville Star finalist Miranda Lambert’s Kerosene (Sony Nashville)
IF YOU GOT Ashlee Simpson’s I Am Me — you’re a girl-pop addict, sure, but still picky! EXCHANGE IT FOR Brit Natasha Bedingfield’s infectious, single-packed Unwritten (Epic)
IF YOU GOT Jason Mraz’s Mr. A-Z; oh, the soft strumming of shaggy boys… EXCHANGE IT FOR Andrew Bird’s The Mysterious Production of Eggs (Righteous Babe)