London’s funnest festival, Lovebox, returns to Victoria Park on Friday July 17 and Saturday July 18 for another round of music and mayhem, with an eclectic mix of live performers and DJs: Rudimental, Snoop Dogg, Hot Chip, Jessie Ware, Little Dragon, Mark Ronson, Annie Mac, Cypress Hill and many more. (If you haven’t already booked, Friday and weekend Lovebox tickets are still available.)
To save you from missing out on any of the party action, we’ve put together a comprehensive Lovebox 2015 stage guide that pinpoints all the on-site fun: everything from Snoop on the main stage to skating up a storm at the roller disco. Let our Lovebox site map be your guide.
This is the big one: party ground zero. Things kick off on Friday with Ella Eyre, followed by grime king Skepta (fresh from jacking Drake’s set at Wireless with a crushing version of ‘Shutdown’), old-school hip hoppers Cypress Hill and Hackney rave crew Rudimental playing a headline homecoming show. Mark Ronson and David Rodigan MBE are both locked in for DJ sets too.
You won’t find Ali G on the west side of Lovebox, but you will find a whole stage full of ace live acts and DJs. West Stage highlights on Friday include Hercules & Love Affair, Andy Butler’s killer disco troupe from NYC, and US house hitmaker MK helping the Lovebox crowd jack. Saturday’s line-up is even bigger, with a headline set by slinky Swedes Little Dragon preceded by Detroit rapper Danny Brown, deep house duo Flight Facilities and Ninja Tune’s Bonobo playing a DJ set.
The Big Top
Fancy having your mind warped while you’re dancing? This is the place to head for experimental beats that still bang – hard. On Friday you can catch Kaytranada laying down gleaming, glitchy R&B, while duo Dusky will be giving a masterclass in bassy house, as will Boddika. Saturday is no less ace, with bass virtuoso and rave demon Squarepusher busting out his wide-eyed techno jazz, and calmer sounds arriving from Nils Frahm, who combines classical and electronica. You can relax, a little, to the Prince-ish funk of Dornik, but then let mighty producer Special Request pummel your soul into the Vicky Park ground with his beefy jungle-inspired rinses.
Give your weekend a dose of Mediterranean boogie courtesy of this merry bunch from Barcelona, who are unleashing their colourful, beautifully staged global carnival in all its eccentric glory. Top DJs picking up the pace include Groove Armada spinning dancefloor anthems, James Zabiela getting housey and Waze & Odyssey belting out bangers, while PBR Streetgang can sort out funk junkies.
Two winters ago, James Murphy (of LCD Soundsystem) and 2ManyDJs brought a ray of Balearic sunshine to London with their Despacio disco. Inspired by the eclectic, relaxed sound of the first wave of Ibiza hedonists, the dynamic trio are setting up once again at Lovebox and Citadel for a full weekend of summer grooves through a custom-built, top-end vinyl soundsystem. It’s the perfect place to get lost in music.
Expect sunshine beats galore at this new stage, which features a rare chance to see Craig Richards – Fabric resident since day one – play a disco set in the outdoors for once. On top of that, globally adored selector Gilles Peterson joins Greg Wilson, Jazzie B and more for some fun in the sun.
Part-programmed by the Roundhouse, this spoken-word stage features experimental beatboxer Reeps One and a rare appearance by conscious collective The Last Poets. Respect.
Even Queen Vic herself would probably crack a grin as acts including the Roundhouse Choir, Lazy Habits and Sam & The Womp take over the park’s original Victorian bandstand.
Bump Roller Disco
It’s a roller disco – what more incentive do you need to get your skates on? Oh, all right: there’s a great DJ line-up all weekend long too.
The Vegas Bar
Welcome to Little Gay Brother’s fun and glitter-packed fantasy. Remember, what happens in Vegas Bar stays in Vegas Bar – unless you have Instagram.
The Garage in Islington has been a mainstay of London’s music scene since 1993, hosting bands such as Oasis, Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Radiohead and more. Following a recent change of ownership to the DHP Family (the guys behind Oslo in Hackney), the whole venue has been revamped with a view to maintaining its title as one of the city’s landmark music venues. The Garage itself has a capacity of 600 and has been restored to its former glory with a state-of-the-art soundsystem and a fully refurbished bar area. There’s some decent food offerings on site as well with the newly kitted out General Store and even a cheeky night club tucked upstairs, renamed Thousand Island, decked out with mirrorballs galore.
Venue says: “Deliric x Silent Strike at The Garage, Saturday July 1.”