James Lavelle's Meltdown

Musical and artistic innovator James Lavelle curate the 21st Meltdown in 2014, following in the footsteps of some of music’s biggest names, including David Bowie, Yoko Ono, Patti Smith and Jarvis Cocker.

Combining creative entrepreneurship with a radical artistic approach, James’ genre-defying portfolio spans music, art, fashion, design and film, and as part of his groundbreaking work with UNKLE, boasts acclaimed musical collaborations with the likes of Queens of the Stone Age, Nick Cave and Thom Yorke.

Collaboration, innovation and a spirit of non-conformism are central to his approach. James worked with young people to curate the programme, meaning that this very special Meltdown in line with his commitment to mobilising the next generation to become the inventors of their own culture.

Mo’Wax inspires a new generation

Both Meltdown and James Lavelle’s iconic label Mo’Wax turned 21 in 2014,  and as part of the festival, Mo’Wax21: Urban Archaeology, an interactive exhibition devised with Southbank Centre as part of the festival, celebrated the creative output of the label James launched as a teenager.

Doug Foster's installation No Beginning, No End in the Clore Ballroom, featured five cyclical artworks and UNKLE's The Heretics' Gate soundtrack. 

The musician/producer has curated a very eclectic Spotify playlist of his current favourites
Listen to the third episode of our monthly podcast, a preview of Unlimited
Get an idea of this year’s programme with these hand-picked events
Listen to specially curated Spotify playlist from the former Mercury Prize nominee
Watch the remarkable short film from BAFTA-winning director, Kieran Evans, here
Hear how The Cure’s legendary frontman put together his festival this exclusive video interview
From the Be Good Tanyas to 2017’s Wildflower Blues, hear some of their great songs
Dom Thomas explains how Whyte Horses are quite literally a dream realised, in this video
Cap off a marvellous summer with our weekend of varied fun
Listen to specially curated Spotify playlists from Simon Raymonde and Richie Thomas
Your best tweets and Instagram images from this year’s festival
Spend your summer weekends enjoying free live performances on our outdoor stage
Listen to music from acts playing Southbank Centre in autumn in this Spotify playlist
Find out about the history of the Argentine music and its links with Cuba and opera
Enjoy five brilliant performances from the incredible Malian music duo.
Listen to this Spotify playlist curated by Dom Thomas of the psychedelic pop group
Discover more about this intriguing composer and musician
Go behind the scenes at Meltdown with the first episode of our new podcast series
Take a look at some of the best images from across the ten days of 2018’s Meltdown festival
See the band as they prepared to play Robert Smith’s Meltdown festival, in this video

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Meltdown stories

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American garage punk band Radkey performing at James Lavelle's Meltdown, Southbank Centre 2014
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The Guerrilla Girls use facts, humour and fake fur to expose discrimination