AOTY 2021
The Avalanches - Wildflower
Critic Score
Based on 43 reviews
2016 Ratings: #68 / 947
Year End Rank: #27
User Score
Based on 894 ratings
2016 Ratings: #83
Liked by 37 people
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The Independent

The appearance of the wonderful Wildflower is cause for celebration, its Zappa/Beasties-style collage of voices, samples, beats, sounds, and especially laughter offering a joyous affirmation of life.

Pretty Much Amazing

By using cross-era samples to orchestrate a genre removed from the effects of time, the Avalanches somehow created an album removed from the effects of influence. Is Wildflower the best album of the year? Probably not. But it was made by one of the most influential artists of our generation.

Loud and Quiet

With that enchanting inscrutability, in fact, ‘Wildflower’ feels almost like the Avalanches incarnate: curiously stoic, utterly unique, and the purveyor a weirdly dazzling trip.

The hard work the band put into this album over the past decade and half is abundantly obvious. As with their debut, the exquisitely painstaking craftsmanship, the overriding sense of joy and wonder, the ears wide open to an infinite universe of sonic possibility are all there. It sounds like the Avalanches, and nothing else does.
The Line of Best Fit

It takes just seconds for Wildflower to dispel  notions of any hard-left stylistic swerve, its opening conversational babble erupting into the same joyous meld of crackling brass and charming samples that won us over last time.


Their work continues to mine a deceptively narrow emotional world—new love, childhood playfulness, wistful sadness, happy feelings of connection—but renders it better than just about any music ever made.

Consequence of Sound

This is an album that Di Blasi and Chater spent 16 years — efficiently or not — making sure they got right, and the level of obsession in its fine-tuning demands respect.

A.V. Club

If Wildflower lacks the same how’d-they-do-that awe after an entire generation of professional and bedroom imitators, the best compliment this sequel can receive is that it feels like a natural successor without being a total rehash.


It took a childhood-and-a-half to come to fruition, but Wildflower is another album that snatches elements from the past but sounds like the future.


Miraculously, Wildflower still sounds like The Avalanches, a collection of ideas and moments, loosely compartmentalised as songs. It’s 2016, and they’ve kept that bastard, time, at bay.

Drowned in Sound

Far from being frozen in time, Wildflower shows a willingness to move forward with a sense of personal history, but unhindered by obligations to it.

Slant Magazine

For those fascinated by the Avalanches's process, as opposed to merely impressed by its most endearing results, Wildflower is a rewarding and challenging listen.

The Guardian
It’s testament to the power of their original vision that it all still sounds so fresh.

Wildflower feels as though it was made for the Avalanches rather than a patient public. Where Since I Left You mapped a plaintive longing onto a travel agency’s idea of heaven, Wildflower is designed for comforts of no special ambition.


It needed to take something substantial to feel satisfied after those sixteen long years, and The Avalanches have gone beyond their calling. 

Resident Advisor

If Since I Left You was the record you put on to get a house party started, this one might be best for backyard BBQs and walking through the bustle of summertime city streets. There's a relaxed quality to the bright, gregarious music as much as there's endless detail to be pored over.

While the days of heavily sampled music seemed dead and gone forever, the Avalanches have somehow managed to pull off an album that's as much a mastery of red tape as it is of musical prowess.
The 405

Wildflower might not be perfect, but it is gorgeous, heartwarming and fun. Its upbeat outlook is infectious and sure to be the soundtrack to many summers to come.

Under The Radar

For all its sonic sponging, there's something unquestionably personal and alive about this recording. While Wildflower comprises many, many elements, ultimately, it's a testament to the craft and time it takes to build such a seamless and joyful record. All of a sudden, 16 years doesn't feel quite so long.

NOW Magazine
Although the vibe is decidedly old and analog, the non-linear effect – the way the group mashes together mainstream with underground and, in the case of the Beatles sample, amateur with professional – feels intensely relevant.
No Ripcord

Wildflower is simply a joy, an euphonious hour-long journey that exists in some wonderfully naive and blissful alternate universe. It’s an aural paradise you’ll never want to leave.

God Is in the TV

Wildflower is the sound of a group who’ve matured whilst keeping the technicolour charm that made them an exciting prospect in 2000. They stick to similar themes this time round but there are still a few surprises.

Northern Transmissions

Wildflower is a thorough, sonically nebulous experience that feels like a goldmine waiting to be picked clean.

Tiny Mix Tapes

Wildflower isn’t going to shift any paradigms, and it’s not going to leave the same impression on the world that Since I Left You did all those years ago, but none of that makes it any less of a delight to listen to.


With the release of 2016's Wildflower, the group stages a comeback that sadly falls short of expectations, but still ends up being a pretty good album anyway.

Rolling Stone
What still sets the Avalanches apart, besides their careful groove pacing, attention to detail, and uncanny ability to move you from inside a track to outside looking in, is their sweet sense of nostalgia.
The Skinny

At 20 tracks long ... it takes some serious listening to get through the whole thing, and a sense of sag in the latter third threatens to overpower on the first few spins. Essentially, this flower could've used a little more judicious pruning.


To The Avalanches’ many devotees, the alternately wacky and wallpaper nature of these 60 minutes probably won’t matter, and neither will the group’s failure to evolve. Yet for those of us not seduced by absence, fond hearts or nostalgia, ‘Wildflower’ is a faded snapshot of a cosier, very distant-seeming past.

Crack Magazine

For all its energy, its long gestation has left it feeling a little too stale.

What if there was an album with no visible or glaring flaws? An album that can represent its genre in just one listen, being essential to it. An album that was so bold that had high risk with a very high reward. An album that never seems to disappoint you after multiple listens. An album that's a true masterpiece. Is there an album like that?

Well, I never believed in a "perfect" album, as no piece of music is perfect... Until I listened to 'Wildflower' by the Avalanches. Please ... read more
An observation: Listening to summer albums in the winter ain't such a bold idea.

Here I am trying to hook myself back into Wildflower, but half a foot of snow is covering my entire driveway and I need to get it out! Do you really expect me to imagine sitting by a beach enjoying a summer album while I shovel snow and freeze myself in the cold?

Well, apparently yes.

Wildflower, to put it simply, is magical. It's the power of The Avalanches: transporting you to a world of endless imagination, ... read more
I actually prefer this over Since I left you. While SILY was like a beautiful ballet happening before your eyes Wildflower felt like an adventure. This is an album that gives everybody listening their own little personal film if you open your mind enough. For me this album is a trip through an abandoned warehouse for old amusement park equipment. The animatronics inside spark to life and some people who snuck inside have to bare witness it. This idea mainly came from how strange and distorted ... read more
In retrospect, I can't imagine what a better comeback album would be like.

Have we ever seen as much pressure on the shoulders of a band as when the Avalanches, after almost 16 years of radio silence, announced their second studio album? There were many bands that we've been waiting for during this decade; immediately comes to mind the case of Pixies and My Bloody Valentine. But the case of The Avalanches has its own particularity; unlike most bands that find themselves in this situation, the ... read more
"it's like if an alien decided to listen to every beautiful summer day at once and this is what it would sound like"

Wildflower directs a certain mood and it engulfs you. Was 16 years worth the wait? Did it live to its hype? I don't care. Wildflower is something special within its own.
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Track List

  1. The Leaves Were Falling
  2. Because I’m Me
  3. Frankie Sinatra
  4. Subways
  5. Going Home
  6. If I Was a Folkstar
  7. Colours
  8. Zap!
  9. The Noisy Eater
  10. Wildflower
  11. Harmony
  12. Live a Lifetime Love
  13. Park Music
  14. Livin’ Underwater (Is Something Wild)
  15. The Wozard of Iz
  16. Over the Turnstiles
  17. Sunshine
  18. Light Up
  19. Kaleidoscope Lovers
  20. Stepkids
  21. Saturday Night Inside Out
  22. Frankie Sinatra
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Added on: June 2, 2016