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 amazing story behind one of the most iconic disco anthems
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
Dom Thomas explains how Whyte Horses are quite literally a dream realised, in this video
See the band as they prepared to play Robert Smith’s Meltdown festival, in this video
See the American singer-songwriter talk about performing and Robert Smith
Hear from the band’s Barry Burns and Stuart Braithwaite and watch gig footage from their performance at Meltdown
See footage from the cellist’s appearance at Meltdown as she explains her distinctive sound
Hear from YONAKA lead singer Theresa Jarvis in this video recorded at Robert Smith's Meltdown
Watch Deftones’ Chino Moreno get a first look at Royal Festival Hall
A past Alchemy highlight: Shye Ben-Tzur and Radiohead's Jonny Greenwood perform 'Challa Wahi Desh'
Celebrated Indian film composer A R Rahman talks about his work

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