By Jonathan Hatchman, music writer
With Field Day, Wireless and last weekend’s LeeFest having passed us by, the Capital’s live music spotlight is now shining brightly upon this weekend’s Lovebox Festival. Held in East London’s Victoria Park, the event boasts two days of live music from a range of acts with a embracing a broad spectrum of, slightly more mainstream, musical tastes. Set to open its doors on Friday afternoon, we’ve compiled a handy guide of ten great acts that are an absolute must see for anybody attending this year’s Lovebox.
Friday July 18th
A$AP Rocky (Main Stage) Appearing as a surprise guest alongside Danny Brown, supporting Eminem at Wembley Stadium last weekend, for a rendition of A$AP’s ‘1 Train’, the New York rapper will return to the stage on Friday for a set of his own, watch out for a whole heap of 21st Century Hip-Hop anthems in the making.
Joey Bada$$ (Annie Mac Presents Stage) If East Coast Hip-Hop is for you, don’t miss teenage Hip-Hop sensation and Pro Era crew rapper Joey Bada$$, with two successful mix-tapes to his name and a debut album – ‘B4.Da.$$’ – set to drop later this year.
MNEK (Annie Mac Presents Stage) Having cut his teeth as a producer for the likes of Rudimental and Little Mix, MNEK is set to release his debut album as a solo artist later this year. Having recently unveiled the album’s brilliant debut official single ‘Wrote A Song About You’, MNEK is sure to go down a treat for the weekend’s Victoria Park revellers.
Tourist (Annie Mac Presents Stage) Named after a passion for travelling for leisure, Tourist is the one-man project of William Phillips. Having made quite a name for himself with his brand of dance music, drawing on influences such as garage, electronica and piano music, Phillips strives to provide a visual spectacle with his live performances, just as highly prioritised as the music in itself.
Saturday July 19th
Nas (Main Stage) There are few living rappers as iconic as Nas, having celebrated the 20th year anniversary of his outstanding debut album ‘Illmatic’ in April, so to celebrate the album’s release and legacy, the artist will perform the record in its entirety on Saturday night.
Crystal Fighters (Noisey Presents Stage) Crystal Fighters released their sophomore album ‘Cave Rave’ last year and will return to Lovebox, this weekend. Expect an incredible live show as the band’s core members Sebastian Pringle, Gilbert Vierich, and Graham Dickson are joined by a selection of instrumentalists for their unique brand of dance music.
The Horrors (Noisey Presents Stage) One of East London’s finest alternative outfits, (originally from Southend in Essex) The Horrors released their fourth and most commercially prosperous album ‘Luminous’ earlier this year, be sure to catch the band’s trippy blend of psychedelia tinged electronic indie rock.
Bipolar Sunshine (Main Stage) The side project of Kid British’s Adio Marchant has been impressing thousands since the release of last year’s ‘Drowning Butterflies’ EP, and now with new single ‘Deckchairs On The Moon’, Bipolar Sunshine are currently becoming one of the country’s most exciting up-and-comers.
JUCE (Soundcrash Presents Stage) Three-piece girl group JUCE have been making plenty of waves of late, with a penchant for deeply infectious, funky pop songs with remarkable danceable qualities.
Soul II Soul (Main Stage) Legendary dance outfit Soul II Soul are set to play this year’s Lovebox, with a back-catalogue of club classics such as ‘Back To Life’ and ‘Keep On Moving’ to name a mere couple, it’ll be impossible to keep still during their soulful live set.