An Insider’s Guide to the Best Sets at Melt! Festival

Melt! Festival in Germany is a solid bet. Held on a former mining site where 20th-century machinery looms over stages, its bookings run the gamut from underground techno DJs to pop stars, presented on reliably monstrous soundsystems. Ahead of this year’s event, which takes place between July 16 and 19, we enlisted Melt!’s very busy head of booking, Stefan Lehmkuhl, to share some of his personal highlights across all its stages.

Thursday, July 16: Santigold, Hercules & Love Affair and the Trevor Horn Band

We’re all looking forward to Santigold and Hercules & Love Affair on opening night, but I feel I should point out the Trevor Horn Band as I fear some people don’t even know who the fuck that is. He wrote “Video Killed the Radio Star,” “Relax” from Frankie Goes to Hollywood and “Slave to the Rhythm,” just to name a few major hits, and of course he’ll play all those. Be ready for ‘80s vibes and guilty pleasures!

Friday, July 17: Modeselektor, Jamie xx, London Grammar and Nils Frahm

Going through Friday’s line-up involves too many decisions. If I were a visitor, you’d find me here: From 17:00 to 21:45 I’d have my feet in the lake by our beach, listening to full sets from Modeselektor, with a small interruption for South African house vibes from Culoe de Song on the Big Wheel stage. Then I’d catch Jamie xx at sunset before running over to Years & Years at 21:45 on the Gemini stage. Calm down with London Grammar on the Mainstage at 23:30, stay for Nils Frahm and finish off with a Bonobo DJ set back at the beach.

Saturday, July 18: The Black Madonna, Lena Willikens, David August and Kylie Minogue

Saturday is full of legends. I’d start my day around 14:00 at the Sleepless floor with The Black Madonna and Lena Willikens. Then I’d head to see David August live and XXXY at Big Wheel from 19:00 to 22:00. Unfortunately that would mean missing Cakes da Killa, but he’s playing in Berlin in two weeks time. Of course, I’d catch the legendary Giorgio Moroder and Kylie Minogue on the Mainstage around midnight. Damn, it clashes with Siriusmodeselektor—I almost hate myself for programming this. Sven Väth is a good choice for the sun coming up toward the end of his set. He’s never played Melt! before so I cant miss his debut.

Sunday, July 19: Ibeyi and Ellen Allien

Sundays always include some sure shots for my personal top Melt! moments, like the annual matinee slot at 4 p.m. when all stages (except the Sleepless floor) focus on rather quiet bands. After catching Jose Gonzalez and Rhye in past years, I’m looking forward to seeing Ibeyi follow Kings of Convenience this year. The other important moment for me is Ellen Allien’s annual closing set. We’ve done this for the last ten years, and this year she’ll play a four-hour set.

Selfishly, I like really getting involved with Sleepless floor after the headliners have played and nothing really can go wrong anymore. You’ll find me somewhere there until Ellen hands the reigns over to Steve Rachmad at 6 a.m. I’d also recommend that everyone check out Damian Lazarus & the Ancient Moons for sunset around 21:30. I saw his first live set in Ibiza this year, and it was fantastic.

Header image: Robert Winter

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Melt! Festival 2013: Details have been announced

 UPDATE: This competition is now closed. 


Melt! Festival is one of Germany’s most anticipated annual festivals, and this year is no exception. Taking place from the 19th–21st of July in the stunning location of Ferropolis’ former coal mine, the 2013 edition will feature performances from Diamond Version, DJ Koze, Flying Lotus, Tricky, The Knife, Scuba, Mykki Blanco, James Murphy, Disclosure, James Blake, Azealia Banks, Ben UFO, Modeselektor & Apparat, SBTRKT, Zebra Katz, and so many more.

As if that weren’t enough, Electronic Beats will be on hand with our infamous ice cream van, providing free refreshment in the form of  ice cream and magazines and Slices DVDs.

Fancy it? We’re giving away three pairs of tickets to Melt! 2013, simply subscribe to our newsletter using the text box below—using the subject “Melt”—to be in with a chance of winning. Competition closes at 11:59pm CET on June 30th, and we’ll notify winners via email the next day.




Main image by Stephan Flad, other images by Matze Hielscher. Read our report from last year’s Melt! Festival here.

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Videodrome 94 – This week’s best videos

New week, new Videodrome. You know the drill by now… During the week we already had Death Grips’ new video for “Lock Your Doors” and JT’s Floria Sigismondi-directed “Mirrors” on our radar. Below, ten new aspirants for the video of the year:

#1 inc. – “Black Wings”, directed by Aged/Aged/Kuhlman

LA-based brother duo inc. have unveiled the video for “Black Wings,”from their excellent debut album, No World, out now via 4AD. Co-directed by themselves and Ryan Kuhlman.


#2 Emperor Yes – “Cosmos”, directed by Chris Boyle

London’s Emperor Yes has premiered a strange/bizarre video for their new single ‘Cosmos’. You’d be a fool to miss this.


#3 Coco Bryce – “Club Tropicana”, directed by Thomas de Rijk

Fatima al-Qadiri anyone? Dutch producer Coco Bryce‘s second album is out today on Fremdtunes, and to mark the occasion he’s unveiled a brand new video for the title track “Club Tropicana” above.


#4 Lil B – Choppin Paper Up, self-directed.

There’s a new Lil B new mixtape out, for free! Thank you Based God! I think a Lil B documentary is necessary. Someone make this happen? Now grab the mixtape here.


#5 Beat Making Lab – Cho Cho Cho, dir?

“Cho Cho Cho” features Congo Beat Making Lab (Queen Minaj, Pierce Freelon, Fal J, Melissa, Laureat, DJ Couleur, MC Mussa) and Zenga, Flamme Kapaya and Apple Juice Kid. Entertaining.


#6 Greatest Hits – “In the Jungle”, directed by Micah Welner

Our friends over at NFOP just unbridled this great video joy for Greatest Hit‘s latest stroke called “In the Jungle”.


#7 Sun Araw – ”Second System Vision Radio”, dir?

Cameron Stallones of Sun Araw just launched “Second System Vision Radio”, an  audio/visual broadcast series in cooperation with L.A.-based dublab.


#8 Grandtheft – “My House”, directed by Musabay/Grandtheft

Check out the video of DJ Grandtheft‘s latest single “My House”. It is out now on Top Billin.


#9 Pttrns – “Strong Talk”, directed by A. Hubertus

Since winning a slot at Melt! in 2010 things went pretty well for the Hot-Chip-esque Cologned-based duo. Next month their second LP will see the light of the day, and “Strong Talk” serves as a delicious appetizer.

#10 Tyree – “Turn up the Bass”, dir?

This one is another classic from 1989, the year I started caring about music and put the Simple Minds and Fine Young Cannibals records from my older brother aside. Back then, this Tyree smasher track was extensively played in both Planet and UFO, the go-to clubs during those changing times in Berlin. Of course, I rediscovered Fine Young Cannibals later.

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Make your Mecca Melt!

Make your Mecca Melt! Oh summer festivals! You know we love the festival season and there simply can’t be more fun than working on a festival review, whilst getting ecstatic on the dancefloor. Every summer we look forward to one extraordinary festival which is held close to Berlin, in Gräfenhainichen’s industrial park Ferropolis. It’s the MELT! festival aka the electronic music Hajj to the Mecca of Techno. Today the Festival unveiled the initial line-up for the next event to take place amongst the cranes in July and it’s quite a read: Adam Beyer, Benga live, Bloc Party, Brandt Brauer Frick, Brodinski, Buraka Som Sistema, Caribou, Claude Von Stroke, Dave Clarke, Destroyer, Dillon, Dixon, Ellen Allien, Flux Pavilion, Gesaffelstein live, Gossip, Justice, Laurent Garnier pres. LBS, M83, Maya Jane Cole, Modeselektor, Peter Licht, Plan B, Richie Hawtin presents Sebastian live, Sebo K, Switch, The Bloody Beetroots DJ Set, The Rapture, The War On Drugs, The Whitest Boy Alive, Todd Terje and Two Door Cinema Club.

Melt! festival takes place at Ferropolis in Gräfenhainichen (Saxony-Anhalt), Germany from July 13th through July 15th. Check the official website for updates and purchase your tickets here.

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Melt! Festival Competition

Melt! Festival Competition We are giving away two “Music was our first Love” T-shirts and one pairs of tickets for this years sold out Melt! Festival in cooperation with Frontlineshop to one lucky winner. With a line up that includes everyone from Addison Groove to DAF the festival takes place in it’s usual post apocalyptic location of Ferropolis in Gräfenhainichen.

All you have to do to be in with a chance of winning is send the name of the band you are most excited about seeing to by July 10th. Winners will be notified by email.

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