The Avalanches upload 2016 BBC Radio 1 Essential Mix to SoundCloud for first time

"Of all our DJ sets over the years, [this] is close to our hearts"

The Avalanches have shared their epic two-hour 2016 BBC Radio 1 Essential Mix on SoundCloud for the first time.

The mix is an esoteric one, far closer to the sound of their 2001 debut, ‘Since I Left You’, than their 2016 album, ‘Wildflower’, in its sheer range of samples.

As a lengthy Instagram statement from the group notes, the mix begins with a 1950 home recording from songwriter Dion McGregor – “a sleep talker who would often narrate his dreams at conversational volume”. Other notably obscure samples include Jack Fascianato’s thrift-store made ‘Music from a Surplus Store’ and a children’s orchestra made from kitchen utensils.

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More recognisable clips from Yoko Ono, Madlib, Bad Brains, Frank Zappa and The Grateful Dead also appear. Listen to the full mix below:

The plunderphonics group said it was one of their favourite DJ mixes they had ever done.

“A compilation of homemade music, street recordings and long forgotten pieces of musical flotsam and jetsam, the mix celebrates every musical maverick who never gave a damn what anyone else thought. Such spirit! Such firebrand energy! Such beauty! We tried to capture it all in one mix,” they wrote.

“We wanted to celebrate the little things with this mix, the beauty in the unnoticed and overlooked, the magic and wonder from the other side of life. This mix is our love letter to that world long lost.”

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Of all our DJ sets over the years, the 2016 BBC Radio 1 Essential Mix is close to our hearts. A compilation of homemade music, street recordings and long forgotten pieces of musical flotsam and jetsam, the mix celebrates every musical maverick who never gave a damn what anyone else thought. Such spirit! Such firebrand energy! Such beauty! We tried to capture it all in one mix. Our journey begins with a 1950 home recording from somniloquist Dion McGregor, a sleep talker who would often narrate his dreams at conversational volume. As narrator of his own terrifying dream journeys, Dion adopted various personas and frequently established an insolent approach to the subject matter at hand – be it a hot air balloon trip to the moon with a group of school children, a game of culinary russian roulette with poisoned eclairs upon a wildly spinning food wheel, or a journey through a wonderfully tiny 'midget city'. Most of McGregors dream narratives end with him shrieking in terror as he wakes up. Leaving Dion, we meet Moog scientist Mort Garson and his electronic 'Symphony for a Spider Plant’ (music designed to improve the well-being of your indoor ferns), the Temple City Cazoo Orchestra, electronic pioneer Bruce Haack and the homemade punk-funk of 14 y/o Chandra, (who we would sample 30 years later on our track ‘Subways’). We detour via the street recordings of Moondog (‘the viking of 7th avenue’) and other traveller musicians; Larry ‘Wild Man' Fischer's riotous recordings from the streets of 1970's L.A are all-time favorite, before reuniting with better known mavericks Sun Ra (live on French TV above), Yoko Ono and The Slits. We flip thrift store trash with Jack Fascianatos 'Music from a Surplus Store' LP, find a children's orchestra made from kitchen utensils, an outer-space-alphabet educational record and hundreds of other long forgotten pieces of musical 'junk'. We wanted to celebrate the little things with this mix, the beauty in the unnoticed and overlooked, the magic and wonder from the other side of life. This mix is our love letter to that world long lost: Our 2016 Essential mix is now on SoundCloud for the first time. The link is in our bio. ✌️Peace

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It’s the second major DJ mix from The Avalanches since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic. Earlier this month, they shared a back-to-back mix with Jamie xx for his monthly NTS radio show.

This year, The Avalanches have been steadily releasing singles from a forthcoming as-of-yet-untitled third studio album, such as  ‘We Will Always Love You’ featuring Blood Orange and the Rivers Cuomo-assisted ‘Running Red Lights’.

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