The Avalanches have been announced as the winner of the 2020 Australian Music Prize for their album, ‘We Will Always Love You’.
The winner of the $20,000 prize was announced in a ceremony this afternoon (March 3), hosted by Jane Gazzo. Over 40 judges – including artists, journalists and programmers – took part in determining the winner this year.
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“We’re so thrilled to be the winners of the prestigious AMP Award and be amongst the esteemed winners of the past,” The Avalanches said in a statement.
“We’d love to thank everyone involved in making this award happen especially SoundMerch, also to the many people who helped us put this record together. A truly special day for us and we’re so grateful.”
‘We Will Always Love You’ was given a four-star review by NME upon its release in December, praising the album for its “diversity of guest musicians, expertly woven music and compositional strength of the tracks”.
In winning the prize, The Avalanches beat out a shortlist comprising Tame Impala’s ‘The Slow Rush’, Ziggy Ramo’s ‘Black Thoughts’, ‘Nyaaringu’ by Miiesha, Alice Ivy’s ‘Don’t Sleep’, Blake Scott’s ‘Niscitam’, Emma Donovan and the Putbacks’ ‘Crossover’, Fanny Lumsden’s ‘Fallow’ and Gordon Koang’s ‘Unity’.
The Australia Music Prize usually comes with a $30,000 cash prize, with funds sourced through sponsorship revenue. However, prize director Scott Murphy had previously warned the sum could be affected due to the pandemic.
“Every year since the [inaugural] 2005 prize, many industry businesses have supported the AMP, mostly via cash sponsorship. I will be asking this of them again soon and I believe most will want to continue their support – but of course, there will be some that cannot,” Murphy said in April last year.
The prize money this year was provided by music merchandise company SoundMerch, which in turn was given naming rights to this year’s award.
[Editor’s Note: NME contributors Sosefina Fuamoli, Mikey Cahill, Kate Hennessy and David James Young are volunteer judges for the 16th Australian Music Prize.]