Robert Plant, Femi Kuti, elbow’s Guy Garvey, and Laura Marling are just some of the artists performing at the 23rd Meltdown from 10 to 19 June 2016.
Curated by Garvey, the lineup for the June festival at London’s Southbank Centre also includes Lift To Experience, This Is The Kit, The Staves, and Connan Mockasin.
With elbow first performing at Meltdown in 2008, the 6 Music DJ and presenter of BBC iPlayer’s ‘Music Box with Guy Garvey’ joins a long list of celebrated festival directors including David Bowie, Patti Smith, Yoko Ono, David Byrne, and Nick Cave.
“Much like my work on TV and radio I see this as the perfect opportunity to shine a light on some amazing new talent while recognising and celebrating the artists that have had an influence on the new sounds of today,” says Garvey. “Beyond that I want my Meltdown to be a party where everyone feels invited and everyone leaves having had the best night out.”
Tickets to Guy Garvey’s Meltdown go on general sale on 18 March 2016.
This year’s event sees Lift to Experience play their first show since 2001. Created in 1996 by Josh T. Pearson, the group released just one album, 2001’s ‘The Texas-Jerusalem Crossroads’ before breaking up. But, despite their limited output, John Peel had the group record three sessions in five months.
This Is The Kit, a project by Kate Stables (vocals, guitar, banjo, trumpet and percussion) backed by various musicians, perform an intimate rooftop garden gig. Previously featured on ‘Music Box with Guy Garvey’, This Is The Kit released ‘Bashed Out’, their third album, earlier this year.
Femi Kuti began his music career at 15 as a saxophonist in Egypt 80. After paying his dues in the band founded by his father, afrobeat creator Fela Kuti, he formed The Positive Force in 1986 and has since recorded six albums and collaborated with the likes of Mos Def and Common.
Manchester trio I Am Kloot present their Garvey-produced, Mercury-nominated album ‘Sky at Night’ accompanied by a 12-piece orchestra.
The Staves, sisters Emily Staveley-Taylor, Jessica Staveley-Taylor, and Camilla Staveley-Taylor, are finding success with the close harmonies of their acoustic folk rock. Last year saw them release the album ‘If I Was’, perform at multiple festivals including Glastonbury, join Florence and the Machine’s UK arena tour, and take their own show on the road.
The success of Connan Mockasin’s debut album ‘Forever Dolphin Love’ led to him touring with Radiohead and Charlotte Gainsburg as well as having his psychedelic pop songs, most recently showcased on the album ‘Caramel’, covered by big names like David Byrne and Anna Calvi.
A member of elbow for the past 25 years, Guy Garvey last year released his debut solo album, ‘Courting The Squall’, and will perform at Meltdown with his solo band, featuring I Am Kloot’s Pete Jobson and The Whip’s Nathan Sudders.
Since releasing her debut album at the age of 18, Laura Marling has been nominated for multiple Mercury Prizes, Brit Awards (winning one), and recorded four more albums over the space of eight years. The most recent of these, 2015’s ‘Short Movie’, reflected on her move to Los Angeles.
Wrapping up this year’s programme is a special event for Refugee Week. Lead by Robert Plant, the event will feature special guests like Nick Mulvey, Nadine Shah, Josephine Oniyama, and Garvey collaborating with Plant and performing their own music, backed by Southbank Sinfonia and choirs from around London.