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. 

Enjoy some of the sights, sounds and superlatives from the first few days of the festival.
Hear from YONAKA lead singer Theresa Jarvis in this video recorded at Robert Smith's Meltdown
Pulitzer Prize-winning critic and author Margo Jefferson on one of the great and controversial icons of the 20th century
Discover what some of the artists of Robert Smith’s Meltdown are listening too.
Artists from Robert Smith’s Meltdown tell us what they’re looking forward to at the festival.
Find out who the artists of 2018’s Meltdown would put on their festival bill
Enjoy this atmospheric twelve track Spotify playlist from the hypnotic, electronic Italian band
Watch Deftones’ Chino Moreno get a first look at Royal Festival Hall
Take a look back and listen to 1998’s Meltdown with this Spotify playlist
Listen to three powerful Spotify playlists from Carleen Anderson, Rod Youngs and Renell Shaw
The singer and journalist on the importance of music as a tool of protest
The celebrated composer, producer and tabla player shares some of his favourite music
Yep, even more! See who's been added to the festival's fantastic line-up
Take our interactive quiz to see which of the Swedish group’s hits matches your personality
See exclusive behind the scenes footage of M.I.A.’s Meltdown performance
Take a look back at the most memorable moments from M.I.A.’s Meltdown festival
Reviews, tweets and more from midweek at M.I.A.’s Meltdown
Take a look at some of the best Instagram photos taken at M.I.A.'s Meltdown
See exclusive video from Young Fathers performance at M.I.A.'s Meltdown
See how M.I.A.’s Meltdown got underway with an epic opening weekend of live music and more

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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