Wild Life was originally curated by Disclosure and Rudimental and this will be the first time neither artist headlines the festival which has paved the way for a host of artists to cement their legacy at what is proving to be a large hit in the UK festival season. Conventionally a Saturday and Sunday festival, the organisers have moved it forward a day early to the Friday and Saturday, allowing both nights to continue just a few hours longer.
There will be six stages this year, including the return of the very popular Warehouse Project Stage (WHP) and the introduction of Elrow – which should be a thoroughly enticing stage to party and rave through the night.
Grime fans will be happy with the likes of Dizzee Rascal, Stormzy, Giggs and JME all on show, whilst the ravers will have an abundance of choice between the Elrow and WHP stages, as Eric Prydz, Joris Voorn, Pete Tong, Maya Jane Coles and the Martinez Brothers will all be on the south coast.
For the natives, they also will be in their element as Brighton legend Fatboy Slim headlines Friday, with recent rise-to-fame singer Rag n Bone Man also appearing on the roster. For anyone fearing of missing Rudimental and Disclosure this year, do not worry, as both will be performing guest DJ sets over the weekend, with the latter going back to back with Armand van Helden.
With a larger line up than in previous years, planning ahead will be even more paramount in limiting the festival clashes. Here are the five things not to miss over the weekend.
Damian Marley – Saturday – Wild Life Stage
Having Damian Marley appear on the festival bill is a rare feat in this country. With a massive cult following, the son of reggae’s most influential star has managed to keep his father’s passion for reggae alive, but going further, expanding and evolving the music into something that is his own sound and his own music. With a host of classics in his catalogue, not to mention his superb collaboration with Nas on ‘Distant Relatives’, this will be a set not to miss and maybe even the best of the weekend.
Fatboy Slim – Friday – WHP Stage – Headliner
Naturally a household name, even more so in Brighton, Norman Cook has gone down in Brighton folklore ever since the DJ began hosting his Big Beach Boutique parties on the Brighton beach back in 2001. In 2002, an unexpected 200,000+ people decided to come party on the sunny shores of B’town, which is more than the population of Brighton. 50,000 were expected, which in something similar to Woodstock, more than 4 times the amount arrived, creating chaos on the roads and streets. With subsequent parties and surprise shows at small venues all year round, Mr Cook is quite the attraction for people of all walks of life in Brighton.
Which is why he will be the big draw at the festival. Expect huge crowds for this set and signs encouraging the ‘Eat Sleep Rave Repeat’ lifestyle to be omnipresent.
Stormzy – Saturday – Wild Life Stage
Stormzy has had a huge last 18 months. Now probably considered to be the face of grime for the masses, he is slowly becoming the heavyweight in his division. After a successful performance state side at Coachella earlier this year, his draw has augmented following the release of his debut album ‘Gang Signs and Prayer’. Performing after Damian Marley and before headliner Dizzee Rascal could be a fantastic way to spend the Saturday evening at the festivals biggest stage.
Eric Prydz – WHP – Saturday
After recently showcasing his latest Epic Show 5.0, the house and techno DJ will be taking the reins and headlining the WHP. Known for his excellent progressive sounds, the DJ has a cult following and will undoubtedly put on a show full of incredible drops and high synths that will have everyone bouncing and reaching for the lasers. With the festival closing a few hours later than normal, hopefully the WHP headline slots won’t clash with other headline artists.
Elrow Stage – All weekend
Whilst it maybe peculiar to include a whole stage in this list, there is good reason to. For the first time since the inception of Wild Life festival, Elrow will be hosting an entire stage on both Friday and Saturday.
Elrow is an highly immersive electronic experience with its main objectives to amuse and entertain. From festivals around Europe and closing parties in Ibiza at Amnesia, Elrow is renowned for its colourful and joyous atmospheres that it creates. Its DNA is to give the crowd an experience like never before. Expect the weird and wonderful. Costumes, people on stilts, outlandish props, confetti and anything that you could possibly dream of will be there; including headline acts Joris Voorn and Jamie Jones, with supporting acts from the likes of The Martinez Brothers and Jackmaster – this genuinely will be a party like no other.