This album may be over 6 months old, but with the release of their new single “Bad Day” with Freddie Gibbs, this review still seemed appropriate. There’s no question that the Avalanches have a massive influence within electronic music. Their 2000 record Since I Left You had a sound that had been used by very few artists, none of which had incorporated an estimated 3,500 different samples. The fact that this entire album was made up of bits and pieces of music that spread across genres was a big part of the appeal for underground electronic music fans, and the concept of having an album that feels like a happy vacation to paradise.

Fans have been kept waiting since 2000 for another release from the plunderphonics legends, and finally in 2016, after several delays, they got what they had been waiting for. There was a lot of anticipation for the Avalanches’ audience, and I’m not sure the release delivered the quality expected of them. As a first time listener of the Avalanches I was definitely intrigued at the style of music, as it was unlike any electronic music I had ever heard. I was impressed with the album, but when I started to listen to their debut LP I understood why Wildflower could seem underwhelming. The feature list on the album is fantastic, with verses from MF Doom, Danny Brown, Biz Markie, and Camp Lo. Doom’s verse on “Frankie Sinatra” is short but lyrically dense as always, and the beat fits Danny Brown’s vocal delivery perfectly. The knack for finding the right beat shows up again on the track “The Noisy Eater,” which is a goofy track about Biz Markie reportedly eating all day. Although these tracks are fantastically written and none of the verses are truly lacking, the Avalanches really shine when it comes to flowing songs together and putting the listener in a mood with instrumental tracks, and this starts to come out in the track “Subways.” It’s almost as if the first two tracks seem to stand alone, which shouldn’t really make sense in the context of an Avalanches album.

After Subways, each track flows together quite seamlessly, which is a bit more of what was expected of this album. With no vocal features for a few tracks, this portion sounds more like Since I Left You, with happy-sounding, mellow electronic music. The excitement of the album does take quite a bit of a dip in the last part of the album, which I didn’t necessarily feel was a bad thing. It felt like the album was always headed in this direction, which will make a bit more sense if you give it a listen. I like the groove in “If I Was A Folkstar” a lot, as well as the other teaser track “Colours”. My only huge gripe with this LP is the ending. Even though you can feel the album coming to a close, they could’ve ended it on a much better note than the lackluster track “Saturday Night Inside Out”, which is just a track with spoken word overtop of a mellow electronic beat.

Overall, I was and still am a big fan of this album and the Avalanches as a whole. I think as long as you’re open to new kinds of electronic music and following the story of an album throughout the whole thing, you should definitely give this a shot.

7/10