Lovebox Festival 2012
Dave Depares goes head to head with Old Testament God for the battle of Lovebox - also starring Crystal Castles, Hot Chip and 2 Bears...
Like an evil bastard Old Testament god (from the Bible Part I: Judgement Day), the "will it/won't it" weather forecast threatens to unload all manner of rain, shit and hellfire on us one minute, then radiant sunshine the next. Almost DELIGHTING in the uncertain, rabbit-in-headlights look of weather-based fear in the 50,000 revellers' eyes, Old Testament god smirks, flipping a coin to decide our fate. In the end he opts for moderate sunshine PEPPERED with rain. He likes being awkward like that, does god. And he's got a stupid beard.
From its humble beginnings, starting out as a club night on Brick Lane in 2002, Lovebox Festival is now celebrating its 10-year anniversary. Who'd've thunk it? Crafted from the bare hands of Groove Armada, it's developed into a pretty sensational festival, managing to exist as far more than just a simple dance event.
Today, the first day, we have We Have Band, Devlin, Sub Focus and the fun-time-frolicking bass boom of 2 Bears, who seem to fight off the rain with their remix of 'I'm Skanking' and get the crowd to invade the stage more than once. Now, there have always been stage invasions, but I've never seen so many at so many festivals in such a short space of time where the crowd are encouraged to invade the stage, and then promptly told to get off the stage. Like, make up your mind, dude.
Crystal Castles give us a welcome bit of guitar in an otherwise electronic day. Alice Glass sporting a new, purpley type hair do that makes her look a bit like the fit one from Scott Pilgrim with the purpley type hair do. This band have become rather more awesome over the past few years, making full use of the big stage and big stage-time slot at the big festival, they have a commanding presence that sees Alice clambering over monitors and barriers towards a happy crowd.
Hot Chip, having just released their fifth album, and possibly one of their best songs ever ('Flutes'), are ideal for Lovebox, and no strangers to it either. Their debut headline slot becomes them, and they wear it well. 'Ready for the Floor', 'One Life Stand', 'Flutes', 'Over and Over' and even a cover of Fleetwood Mac's 'Everywhere' go down a storm, for want of a better word. Triumphant against the indecisive weather, the geek-electronica flows through the air as I dance like Carlton from Fresh Prince beneath the unusually clear skies.
The main stage remains protected by an invisible forcefield, defiantly deflecting the bad-weather-vibes of an angry deity, a crown-like circle of clouds surrounding us miles overhead that one very observant friend of mine described as a 'cloud anus'. "I'll get you next time," shouts Old Testament god as he pedals away on his tricycle. But we didn't hear him. We were too busy enjoying Hot Chip. And it was good.