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 a Spotify playlist of artists from New Music Biennial 2019
Enjoy a Spotify playlist of music crafted by the man behind the sound of the 1980s
A Spotify playlist to get you in the mood for the CHIC-est of Meltdowns
Enjoy the sarod players’ favourite music in these Spotify playlists
Listen to a chronological Spotify playlist of the revolutionary composer’s work
Enjoy this Spotify Playlist of tracks featuring samples from Nile Rodgers’ music
Enjoy a Spotify playlist packed with hits from the Meltdown curator’s remarkable back catalogue
Listen to a specially curated Spotify playlist from Sam Pillay
Listen to the artists performing at Southbank Centre in 2019
Enjoy nine inspirational pieces of music from the jazz saxophonist in this Spotify playlist
The singer shares ten tracks she’s listening to right now in a special Spotify playlist
The pianist and composer shares a specially curated Spotify playlist of his influences
Listen to covers of some of the composer’s most iconic songs in this Spotify playlist
Listen to pieces from the 22-year project, and discover more about Chase’s commissions
Enjoy a specially curated Spotify playlist of the acts playing here in 2019
Listen to a selection of tracks handpicked by Elheist, and a Bonnie Banane playlist
Listen to a playlist of music from MK ULTRA and the score it influenced
Listen to this specially curated playlist of ‘the father of South African jazz’
Listen to specially curated Spotify playlist from the former Mercury Prize nominee
Listen to specially curated Spotify playlists from Simon Raymonde and Richie Thomas

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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