On We Will Always Love You, vaunted Australian sampledeliacs The Avalanches take the love affair between the communication scientist Ann Druyan and the astronomer Carl Sagan as their point of inspiration. From here, The Avalanches fashion an ambitious, sweeping statement record, one that sees them focusing a little more on songcraft and the human voice than they did on their previous LPs.Much like its predecessors Since I Left You and Wildflower, We Will Always Love You locks into a shimmering groove early on and maintains the mood through to the close. We Will Always Love You doesn’t lean quite as heavily on the hip-hop-indebted plunderphonics which have characterised The Avalanches’ previous work, though it is certainly in the mix. Disco, sample-house, folk and psych-pop are all brought into the fold here, with a smattering of short interludes providing the listener with periodic palette-cleansers.
The collaborators list on We Will Always Love You is as adventurous as The Avalanches’ sound – Jamie xx, Rivers Cuomo, Kurt Vile and Neneh Cherry are but a few of the varied names you’ll find passing through the album at various points. The guest vocalists provide The Avalanches with a way of steering the album’s course, helping them shift the feel of the record without losing their core aesthetic of widescreen hypnagogic pop.
Grand, ambitious and filled with star guest spots, We Will Always Love You is as lush and soulful as anything in The Avalanches’ discography – quite a feat, considering the competition.