This year’s Lovebox lineup is typically of-the-moment, headlined by AlunaGeorge, Plan B and Azaelia Banks.
There’s the abbreviated (SBKRKT, DIRG, S.P.Y), the ironically misspelled (Oddisee, Metrik, Monki, Venum Sound) and the whimsical (Evian Christ, Flying Lotus).
But let’s get excited about some straightforward throwbacks. For this, Lovebox’s eleventh year, a few classics have come out of the woodwork.
The best part is, they don’t appear to have any new material.
Li’l Kim has not released an album since 2008. Jurassic 5 are patching things up after a six-year breakup, and D’Angelo’s latest album, allegedly finished, is a mystery even to the all-knowing internet.
Performances like these can be a high-risk investment—at best a veteran performer showing us all how it’s done, at worst an embarrassing display of not knowing when to quit.
But if all goes well, these acts could serve as a welcome reminder of a time when R&B and hip hop were more dogmatic genres – before mainstream urban music went a little bit electro.
Kim’s show on the Sunday roster will be her only appearance on the UK festival scene this year.
So expect the classics, and Kim’s confrontational, foul-mouthed raps mixed and if we’re lucky, a healthy dose of chinchilla fur, suggestive squatting and plenty of flesh.
Her reputation for feuding with other female rappers could leave fellow headliner Azaelia Banks shaking in her britches.
Banks’ potty mouth gives Kim a run for her money. But mainstream female rappers don’t seem to do filth these days without a heavy dose of irony.
In the case of Banks’ “212” video, this means pairing explicit lyrics with a Mickey Mouse jumper and pigtails, and hiding them under a frantic electro beat.
A rare set from “R&B Jesus” D’Angelo on Saturday begs for classics from the singer’s best album, Voodoo.
That one’s 13 years old. The singer is famed for his iconic video ‘How Does It Feel’ in which a corn-rowed, svelt D’Angelo sings naked in the shower as a camera pans his chiselled torso—minimalism at its best, and no irony whatsoever.
But we may see a more coy side of D’Angelo this time round – at a recent gig in Toronto he proved reluctant to strip off.