Delivered during the dawning days of 2012, Ringo 2012 is a state of the union address from the beloved Beatle, a brief telegram of all the sounds and sentiments important to Richard Starkey as he begins his 72nd year. Ringo walks the line between the past and present, celebrating the former through the spectrum of the latter, producing a crisp, irrepressibly cheerful dose of nostalgia, one where he covers childhood favorites (Lonnie Donegan's skiffle classic "Rock Island Line" and Buddy Holly's "Think It Over," a version that popped up on the 2011 Holly tribute Listen to Me; "Slow Down" is not the Larry Williams tune the Beatles covered, it's an original with the same name) and revives two old album tracks from the '70s, "Step Lightly" and "Wings," choosing the latter for the record's first single. Take these four cuts away, and there are only five originals left on this 28:50 album, songs about Liverpool, the Fabs, Sambas, good vibes, and peace & love. Ringo being Ringo, he gets by with his high-profile friends -- Glen Ballard, Van Dyke Parks, Dave Stewart, and brother-in-law Joe Walsh all chip in on the collaborations -- so the record doesn't have a note out of place, doesn't have a moment that's unexpected. Such familiarity may be a tad too cozy, but Ringo has long abandoned the very concept of adventure, preferring to look back through rose-colored granny glasses...and if Ringo 2012 is slighter than the lighter-than-air 2010 Y Not, it still has enough good cheer to bring a smile to longtime Beatles lovers.
AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine