The legendary sample kings the Avalanches are back with their third LP, We Will Always Love You. Like their last LP, 2016’s Wildflower, We Will Always Love You is heavy on guest features and samples from songs you may or may not know. Here, we attempt to catalog all the guests and samples; we might miss some here, but part of the fun of Avalanches records is trying to figure out where you might have missed something before. So, happy hunting for stuff we missed!
Superorganism’s Orono Noguchi is the first voice on the album, but it’s not in its floating form found on her own albums; she leaves a voicemail for an old lover, starting the album off in a melancholic direction.
Dev Hynes from Blood Orange kicks off the first proper song on the album, delivering both lilting singing, and a spoken word interlude. The song features a semi-prominent Smokey Robinson and the Miracles sample as well; “I’ll Take You Any Way That You Come” is the building block for the rest of the title track.
MGMT’s Andrew VanWyngarden sings this positively buoyant track, which features some work from the Smiths’ Johnny Marr as well. The Shirelles’ “It’s Love That Really Counts” gives the song its background chorus and dreamy background.
This is one of the wildest combos of collaborator and sample on the entire album, as neo soul singer Leon Bridges — who appears multiple times here — sings over a sample from prog rock group the Alan Parsons Project.
Another spare track with Orono’s voicemail getting a reprise.
The former Terence Trent D’Arby sings with his weathered, layered soul voice alongside a prominent Vashti Bunyan sample, and what sounds like a handful of new vocal lines from her as well.
The Jane’s Addiction frontman and Lollapalooza mastermind delivers some platitudes over this bubbly funk jam in the middle of the album.
Oxnard singer and musician Cola Boyy is joined by Mick Jones on the playground chant “We Go On,” a song that will sound absolutely perfect when the weather is warmer.
The U.K. legend Tricky does some spoken word over a hazy sample from ’80s pop group Total Contrast.
Jamie xx connects with the ’Lanches and electro pop artist CLYPSO and post-punk legend Neneh Cherry for this song, maybe the most anthemic on the whole record. It also samples Brazilian legend Carlinhos Brown.
Salty Miller’s song of the same name becomes the skeleton for “Music Makes Me High,” which also features a sample of the Devoted Souls’ “Keep On Holdin’ On.”
Tricky returns for his second appearance, working a trios performance with Denzel Curry and incredible up-and-coming rapper/singer Sampa the Great.
The jazz band Pat Metheny Group’s “Last Train Home” becomes the background for Kurt Vile (yes, Kurt Vile!) to deliver some spoken word as the song ascends and ascends around him.
Up-and-coming artist Pink Siifu makes maybe his most high-profile appearance yet rapping over the twinkling “Always Black.”
Karen O. shows up for her own spoken word section here, quoting David Berman’s album as Purple Mountains. RIP Berman.
Pink Siifu makes a return appearance here, trading the mic with Weezer don Rivers Cuomo, who sings wistfully over the doo-wop-inflected track.
Leon Bridges returns here again, but in the form of a sample of his “Bad Bad News.” The real nuttiness comes in the sample of “Electric Counterpoint: 1. Fast,” a song written by Steve Reich. In what other context do those two share a song but an Avalanches album?
Cornelius and Kelly Moran help the ’Lanches compose on this song that feels like a float through space, which also samples a semi-obscure song of the same name from Sharon Lewis.
Perhaps the most fun sample on the entire album comes last, as the Avalanches use dispatches from the Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence as a sparse, electro closer.