The Avalanches - We Will Always Love You: Review
The Avalanches, the moniker for artists Robbie Chater and Tony Di Blasi, have come around once again to deliver the best vibe checks of the year in We Will Always Love You. Though it isn’t a complete shift from the sampledelia driven predecessors, it has the closest thing to a consistent sound. It embodies a mellow and depth driven sound that blends well with the feature artists. That sound being more attune to spacious neo-psychedelic electro pop tracks that only elevates with the talent. The unified transition from start to finish offers a unique meditation of music that leaves you wanting to start over again, listen closer to the arrangements of the instruments and all while leaving you with a gleeful mind.
Like their previous album, The Avalanches collection of features is only rivaled by this year’s Gorillaz Presents: Song Machine Vol. 1. Some definitive highlights come from the merging of the new class and old, within the same realm of genre.
“The Divine Chord,” which features an indie-tronica band MGMT on the vocals and Johnny Marr, of the indie band The Smiths, playing melodic guitar strings where its subtleties elevate the xylophone like keys and spacey percussion.
The 72 minute, 25 tracklist project is one of the rare ones where, albeit not every track hitting as strong as ninety percent of the album, it keeps a smooth transition from start to finish. It isn’t like Wild Flower where the vibes fluctuate. This is a better rollercoaster ride than many of the longer albums released this year.
On WildFlower, the hip-hop features get a lush and colorful instrumental that feels different from the rest, but not completely. It has its melodic overtures, but when it changes to a hip-hop centric track it becomes more jazzy and lively. Though it never consistently hits with a track as lackluster as “The Noisy Eater.”
However on We Will Always Love You, when incorporating the spacious sound it devoids into a territory with unique comfortability to the artists. Like on “Always Back,” with Pink Siifu and “Take Care Of Your Dreaming” with Denzel Curry, Tricky of Massive Attack, and Australian rapper Sampa The Great. The production meshes with them and it allows them shine, especially Sampa The Great, whose lush and rhythmic structure amplifies her delivery.
We Will Always Love You exceeds expectations, including the particular features. Outside the aforementioned MGMT & Johnny Marr, there is a phenomenal hit in “Running Red Lights,” with River Cuomos and Pink Siifu. Though that doesn’t hit the nail as hard as “We Go On,” featuring Cola Boyy, a singer and instrumentalist from Oxnard, and Mick Jones of The Clash. The way The Avalanches blend it with a sampling of the chorus from “Hurting Each Other,” by The Carpenters, which in turn is a really smooth inclusion to the bass of the track as it takes guitar notes too. It leaves a complete awe every time it plays.
The vibrant rollercoaster ride from the Avalanches has its downs, but those downs do not hinder it, since no track is filler. Each has their own themes and overarching melodic tone that fluctuates with the instrumentals, which is how it succeeds.