“Avalanches above, business continues below.”

Australian sampling legends The Avalanches dropped the first single off their second album today.

That doesn’t sound like such an immense thing, but it’s (sorta) been 16 years since they last released a song. Modular Records first announced that the record was coming soon in 2006, a full ten years ago – joking that they’d “rejected The Avalanches' second album because it sounded rushed”.

Less than two months ago, The Avalanches updated their social media accounts to add a golden motif of a butterfly on a black background, with the letter A emblazoned on its wingtips. The next day, they announced that they would be performing at Splendour in the Grass. The boys were crying wolf with a little more gusto.

So people lost their damn minds today, when (at 2pm AEST) Frankie Sinatra hit Triple J’s airwaves, featuring DOOM and Danny Brown. And now there’s a video.


We open with a mysterious glowing yellow drink, being sold from an icecream van. Looks fizzy. Tastes bouncy. Feels QT.

We pan out to a wider shot of a harbour-side festival, where children and bands are playing beside boats held up on blocks. Somewhere, a mariachi band is playing “The Sound of Silence”.

Then the music gets more intense. I really like this bit, not least because it reminds me that I need to watch more of the short-lived HBO series Carnivàle.

We start to meet a motley band of folks, most of them yelling from between yellow lips. They’re primarily dudes. It’s a bit of a sausage-fest.

Suddenly, we’re cruising on a boat with a raiding party of swamp pirates, drinking yellow bevvies with the boys, and shooting yellow paintballs.

We go to land, but oh no! The landing is defended by a bunch of… musicians? Their weapons are their instruments, made from timber and steel – and they’re angry, like their government just cut arts funding.

A fisherman is shot, but luckily, a crash test dummy attempts CPR. Then another guy paints The Avalanches’ new logo on his head, which resurrects him.

From the perspective of our zombie friend, a dog turns into a man, but still pants like a dog, while a man manages to continue driving his tractor despite turning into a dog. This is roughly what Cory Bernardi imagines will happen if Australia passes gay marriage.

Another man arrives home to eat dinner with his family, only to suddenly become spooked when he lifts his lettuce and sees some kind of beetle between his fingers instead. The chicken carcass on the table animates, and becomes a live bird. He starts dancing like a bird himself, and his wife sees him as a beautiful bird.

But his son is more interested in the fact that his sister has become a taxidermied cat.

Suddenly, we are joined by a topless man. He is in a field of feathers, and a sample from The Sound of Music is playing. These are a few of my favourite things.

Filmed in and around New Orleans, the music video looks a bit like a trailer for a gritty US cable series. It’s probably a series about zombies, or superheroes, or zombie superheroes. Prepare to eat up Season 1 with a spoon, then drop off somewhere through Season 2, only to get really mad when someone spoils Tractor Dog’s brief return for a Season 3 cameo.

The best thing about this video is how different it is from the ad for The Do-Over that immediately preceded it on YouTube. “Wildflower: the opposite of an Adam Sandler film”. They should put that on billboards. They’d make a fortune.

The album, Wildflower, is going to feature a bunch of other folks, including Father John Misty, Toro y Moi and Biz Markie. It’ll soon be on sale on vinyl via Vinyl Me, Please.

I’m so keen.