May is a pretty brilliant month, we only work two Mondays, the weather finally starts to resemble something that looks like summer and the Eurovision song contest occurs. To make May matters even more marvellous, a shining new festival, All Points East, is moving into London’s Victoria Park. Offering a smorgasbord of alternative, the lineup would make anybody even the slightest indie-inclined punter’s mouth water. Love Justice? They’re there. Fan boy Father John Misty? He’s there. Obsessed with Beck? He’s there. Phoenix, you say? They’re there. We could go on.

Occurring over two weekends, the park will be transformed into a celebration of the obscure with world-class gigs sandwiched by a weekday programme of free events and activities including outdoor cinema, street food traders and sports & wellbeing. Headlined by almighty pillars of the alternative world including Björk, LCD Soundsystem, The xx, The National, Catfish & the Bottlemen and Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. We have attempted to dissect the mighty musical offerings and picked out some of our top suggestions across both weekends.

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LYKKE LI

The saint of sorrow returned a few weeks ago with a new label and two new tracks. The heart doesn’t seem to have recovered from the devastation of I Never Learn, yet she’s channeled sadness into ice-cool hip hop-leaning pop ‘Deep End’. The more traditional Lykke-ists can find comfort in the sob-fest ‘Hard Rain’ as Li once more outpours over complex deconstructed beats courtesy of partner Jeff Bhasker’s production. The new album so sad so sexy is due June 8, so APE feels like the perfect platform to showcase its tracklist alongside her much loved sad bangers ‘No Rest For the Wicked’, ‘Rich Kid Blues’ and more.

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PUMAROSA

A recent edition to the APE Presents stage, this enigmatic, mysterious band will showcase their debut album The Witch alongside older cuts. An enthralling act to watch live, lead singer Isabel casts a figure somewhere between Souixsie Sioux and Stardust-Bowie as she contorts and twists her body in time with the consuming instrumentals that form the backbone of the band’s impressive LP. After touring arenas with Depeche Mode, this will be an opportunity for the band to bring things back to a smaller setting and allow the subtle nuances of ‘Lions’ Den’ and ‘Honey’ to really shine. With only one other festival date confirmed for the summer, don’t miss the chance to check them out.

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HOT CHIP

Friday nights are made for party and as the sun sets over Viccy Park, LCD Soundsystem will be bringing their epic alt-beats to the main stage meanwhile Yeah Yeah Yeahs and Phoenix will also be providing some immaculate indie-bangers. However, the rave to end all raves is set to take place in the smaller JagerHaus Stage as Hot Chip headline with timeless tracks including ‘One Life Stand’, ‘Over & Over’ and many more. Joe Goddard returns to the lineup after spending much of last year promoting his impeccable studio album Electric Lines, featuring the inconceivably good single ‘Music Is The Answer’ which we hope finds its way onto this Friday sundown setlist.

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HERCULES & LOVE AFFAIR

If you prefer your dance slightly more extravagant, enter Andy Butler and his outfit Hercules & Love Affair. Last year they released a sublime collection of disco-drenched dance pop with a host of special guests including Sharon Van Etten, Rouge Mary, Faris Badwan and more. With a host of fail-safe floor fillers including ‘Blind’ and ‘Painted Eyes’ along with the gigantic ‘Controller’, this is sure to sound beautiful in the East London setting, and will have the Dalston Superstore crowd well and truly catered for with this LGB-Terrific afternoon set.

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MARIKA HACKMAN

Mournful musician Marika Hackman reinvented herself on only her second record I’m Not Your Man by successfully stepping away from the somber poeticism of her debut and injected wit and sexuality into an exceptional follow up. With an ignited emphasis on electric guitar and heavy instrumentation, Hackman’s live show has developed too and incorporates the giddy playfulness of ‘Boyfriend’ with the heavy drama of ‘Gina’s World’ effortlessly. After selling out London’s Shepherd’s Bush Empire her appearance at APE is sure to be a standout of the weekend.

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FRIENDLY FIRES

Everybody’s favourite Hawaii-pop band are back with spectacularly summery new single ‘Love Like Waves’ after a six-year hiatus. The trio consisting of Ed Macfarlane, Jack Savidge and Edd Gibson return to expectedly full form with this shiny offering and sold out a raucous reunion show at Brixton’s O2 Academy last month before its release. The show included an airing of two other previously unreleased tracks, and as All Points East is the band’s next live date in the calendar, its likely they’ll be treating Hackney crowds to further previews of new material. After what is sure to be a heavy weekend for all involved, the wistful surf-pop stylings of ‘Blue Cassette’, ‘Hurting’ and ‘Pala’ are just what’s needed to sooth sore Sunday heads.

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LORDE

Pint-sized pop provocateur Lorde released one of the most faultless, flawless and vulnerable albums of 2017, and has been touring it relentlessly around the globe since. All Points East marks the beginning of her lengthy festival run and in a sub-headline slot she’s primed and ready to absolutely kill with her coming-of-age anthems. Ella O’Connor has always been a gifted and original performer and with two albums of purely personal material, her setlists are tight and visual displays both artistic and avant-garde. Thanks partly to Jack Antonoff’s pristine production style, tracks including ‘The Louvre’ and ‘Supercut’ magnified the pop-potential of Lorde’s first record and transformed them into absolutely momentous-scale bangers. The epitome of this is the gargantuan ‘Green Light’, which is surely a contender to be the purest moment of ultimate euphoria across the lengthy billing.

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STEFFLON DON

Quite a lot has changed for the Don since independently releasing her Real Ting mixtape back in 2016. A place on the BBC Sound Of… list, a Brits’ Critic’s Choice nomination and countless appearances in the upper echelons of the charts has turned Stefflon Don into a household name in the UK. The charismatic artist has remained true to her original style and characterful delivery and remains also an absolute force when performing live, she has confidence to spare and presents herself with uncompromising, unapologetic sexuality. Steff also has a healthy mixture of underground favourites (’16 Shots’, ‘Real Ting) and bonafide hits (‘Hurtin’ Me’, ‘Instruction’) meaning this is set to be one of Saturday’s biggest sets.

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BJÖRK

A performer unlike any other on the lineup, it seems fitting for the Icelandic innovator to close the first weekend of this all-consuming celebration of the alternative. After the heartbreak record Vulnicura, Björk returned in late-2017 with Utopia, painting in a completely different colour palette. APE will be the second time the new live show has been performed onstage and it is near impossible to predict what this curious, creative performer will lift from the latest LP and how she will reimagine her long celebrated discography. All that is certain is the staging is assured to be inspired, the outfits wild, the sound incomparable and the artistry magnificent. And absolutely no chance of ‘It’s Oh So Quiet’, so we can all rest easy.

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THE WAR ON DRUGS

The Philadelphia natives transformed themselves from cult-Americana into bonafide indie-rock icons following the global success of last year’s A Deeper Understanding. The rich, wonderfully produced collection sees the band awarded a prime slot on APE’s main stage opening for The National on June 2. Trimming down their setlist is sure to be a struggle for this acclaimed five piece who are known to expand their recorded material to over 10-minute run lengths with indulgent instrumentals. Comeback single ‘Thinking Of A Place’ clocks in at 11:11 on record, so we may see some edits for the weekend show so the band are able to showcase as much of the new record as possible along with fan favourites ‘Red Eyes’ and ‘Under The Pressure’.