After iTunes was released for the Windows platform a little over a year ago, I thought nothing would be able to top that. It was a nice, easy to easy, and unique music player that Windows badly needed. The problem was, I fell so much in love with it, that I found myself booting back into Windows from Linux just to use it. After experiencing iTunes, going back to xmms, or any of the other Linux-music apps was just not appealing to me. I know i'm one of the very few people that actually reboot to listen to music, but, it was that damn good.

Ever since I've been trying to find something in Linux that can pull me from my Apple addiction.

Enter amarok.

When I first came across amarok, i didn't really like it. The reason was that, frankly, i don't like the "KDE widgits". I like KDE, don't get me wrong, i use it all the time, but those of you who use it know what i'm talking about. It's in almost every app for KDE, and it's ugly for the most part.

However, the more I used it, th emore i began to like it, and the less i had to reboot. Now, with the release of v1.2, nothing tops it. Now amarok features things that even iTunes doesn't. Its so good, in fact, that my roomate who is a usual Windows user, installed Linux just to use amaroK.

So, what are the reasons why you should use it? Here we go:

- MySQL backend to store your music library into a database for quicker lookups of filenames, id3 tags, etc.
- Audioscrobbler support, share your musical tastes with everyone using Audioscrobbler.com's service. Also provides song suggestions based on your audioscrobbler account.
- Lyrics support, while playing music, you can switch to the lyrics tab, and amarok will download the lyrics for you.
- Cover manager, can automatically download the cover art for all the songs in your library or you can use custom covers.
- iPod support, plug in the iPod, start amaroK, and it should appear under the media device section
- A nice design to show you what's currently playing along with other albums by the artists, and ranks your songs accroding to your listening habbits.

Plus, everything else that you'd expect from a music player.

All in all, amaroK 1.2 is probably the best music application i've ever used for Windows or Linux. iTunes has a great interface, however, there is no automatic lyrics support nor automatic cover support (though, i have seen iTunes obtains some cover art, but this was few and far between).

You can check out amaroK at amarok.kde.org

updated: I just found this article over on Newsforge regarding Amarok 1.2 as well, so you may want to check that out.