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The Avalanches’ ‘We Will Always Love You’ Wins SoundMerch Australian Music Prize

The Melbourne duo’s critically-acclaimed third album has been honoured as the winner of the 2020 Australian Music Prize.

Image of Australian Music Prize winners The Avalanches

The Avalanches have been crowned the winners of the 2020 Australian Music Prize

Grant Spanier*

The Avalanches have taken out the 16th edition of the SoundMerch Australian Music Prize with their critically-acclaimed album, We Will Always Love You.

Announced today at a ceremony in Melbourne, the Victorian duo’s third album was revealed as the winner of the prestigious title, beating out albums by the likes of Alice Ivy, Blake Scott, Emma Donovan and The Putbacks, Fanny Lumsden, Gordon Koang, Miiesha, Ziggy Ramo, and four-time nominees Tame Impala.

“We’re so thrilled to be the winners of the prestigious AMP Award and be amongst the esteemed winners of the past,” the group explained. “We’d love to thank everyone involved in making this award happen especially Sound Merch, also to the many people who helped us put this record together. A truly special day for us and we’re so grateful.”

The Avalanches’ third album arrived in December of 2020, just four years on from their second album, Wildflower, which also received an Australian Music Prize nomination in 2016. The record was an instant success, reaching #4 on the ARIA charts, and receiving widespread acclaim for its vast, all-encompassing sound, with feature appearances from the likes of Perry Farrell, Neneh Cherry, Weezer’s Rivers Cuomo, Johnny Marr, and two-time Australian Music Prize winner, Sampa the Great.

“Winning The AMP this time is a ‘mean feat’ as there were plenty of great contenders so I congratulate The Avalanches on winning the 16th AMP, you deserve it,” said The Australian Music Prize founder Scott Murphy in a statement. “I’d like to thank all our judges and partners for pulling off our 16th prize during difficult times.”

First awarded in 2005, the Australian Music Prize is often described as “Australia’s richest music prize”, with the winner taking home not only prestige, but 20,000 in prize money thanks to SoundMerch. This year’s award saw judges pare down a longlist of 88 albums to a shortlist of nine, with some of the year’s finest releases making the cut.