With its programming spanning everything from pop to hip-hop, r&b, house and techno, there really might be something for everyone at this year’s Lovebox. This diversity of curation – booking sets from Andy C and Chase & Status, as well as Bicep, Seth Troxler and Gerd Janson – is a key reason why the day festival has become one of London’s favourites in its fifteen year history, and this 2017 edition is no different.
To avoid the tyranny of choice, we’ve compiled a short list of must-see acts to guide you through the (hopefully) sun-filled fields of Victoria Park on the 14th and 15th July.
The Bulgarian producer and DJ has topped Resident Advisor’s poll of the Best Live Acts two years running now for good reason. His live show, which he’ll be performing on Friday 14th, consists of a dizzying array of MIDI keyboard, drum machines, hardware and vinyl. Juggling this table top of equipment with enough ease to allow for much shoulder-shaking and hip-swinging is no mean feat, and his clear enthusiasm for his craft translates easily to the crowd. With KiNK, the live electronic act truly is live and this one man show is not to be missed.
2. DJ Jazzy Jeff
A far cry from his days as the Fresh Prince’s sidekick, Jazzy Jeff is one of the most revered turntablists in hip-hop. Performing without the accoutrements of an artist like KiNK, instead Jeff displays his creativity through the minimal purity of two plates of control vinyl and Serato software, allowing his impeccable mixing skill to showcase the best of the music he has to offer. Expect everything from Stevie Wonder to Kendrick Lamar, Dead Prez and Missy Elliott to come through.
3. Ricardo Villalobos
One of the staples of the European mega-club circuit, a Ricardo Villalobos DJ set is something entirely unique in itself. Splicing together his litany of extended remix edits and pulsating house productions, the German-Chilean has the knack for reading the vibe of a room in an instant, manipulating the crowd to palpable levels of dancefloor intensity and then introspection, all while keeping locked into a flawless mix. Catch him headlining the Fabric stage on Saturday 15th.
With the release of last year’s A Seat at the Table, Solange proved herself to be so much more than Beyoncé’s elevator-fighting younger sister. With Seat she delivered a socio-political piece motivated by the continuing racial injustices experienced by black Americans, herself included, and her live show completes the difficult task of amplifying the record’s message, rather than playing it down in the service of spectacle. Tastefully minimal yet insistent, her set is part performance art piece, part R&B revue, and wholly Solange.
5. Frank Ocean
Will Frank Ocean even bother showing up to his headline slot on Friday 14th? Who knows, but if his performances earlier this summer at NorthSide Festival in Denmark and Manchester’s Parklife are anything to go by, if he graces Victoria Park with his presence, the crowd are in for a rare treat. Styling himself as more of an auteur than mere artist these days, expect B-Sides, extended acapellas and, well, anything Ocean feels like performing on the day. One thing’s for sure though, whatever he comes up with will undoubtedly be beautiful, challenging and impossible to forget.
Lovebox 2017 takes place at Victoria Park, London, 14-15 July. Last tickets available here.