The full round up from Annie Mac's Maltese adventure...

A perfect start to the summer festival season and a holiday at the same time, Annie Mac’s Lost & Found festival returned to Malta for its fourth edition over the May Bank Holiday weekend.

Bringing 9,000 party-ready Europeans - mainly British, Scottish and a lot of Irish - for four days in the blazing sunshine, disco-infused pool parties at Café Del Mar, castle raves in the historic capital of Valetta and boat parties across the weekend meant there was plenty to get involved with during the afternoons before the action moved to Numero Uno - a mainly open-air festival site with three stages and one indoor club – as the skies darkened.

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Known for bringing a diverse, genre-hopping range of DJs and live artists to the picturesque island that’s featured on Game of Thrones, Annie’s team once again pulled together a stellar line-up - with a strong emphasis on female talent - full of the biggest names in house, techno, UK bass, Afro-beats and drum ‘n’ bass.

It meant that, musically, there was something for everyone at AMP Lost & Found: whether it was a late-night garage set from Oneman, The Streets’ Mike Skinner delighting a busy crowd with ‘Blinded By the Lights’, Stefflon Don starting a twerk-off onstage at the beach party, Heidi pumping out jackin’ Chicago house, Peggy Gou showing everyone why she’s one of the most exciting DJs right now, dancehall duo The Heatwave bringing carnival vibes, or Afro-beats king J Hus surfing the crowd.

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While the Tropicana stage hosted live performances from R&B starlet Mabel, grime MC Novelist and rising London rapper Ms Banks, the Palace stage - the largest on site, boasting kaleidoscopic visuals and spellbinding strobes - provided the perfect venue for Bicep’s hypnotic acid-tinged house and techno and a faultless yet unplanned B2B2B between Mella Dee, Denis Sulta and Mall Grab, each feeding off the tireless energy of the crowd and peaking with the anthem of this year’s festival ‘Techno Disco Tool’.

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And that - the variety of artists and DJs performing – is what makes AMP Lost & Found stand out from an arguably crowded schedule of festivals. As well as being a four-day party under constantly sunny skies, the Bank Holiday weekender offers up plenty of memorable moments: Diplo paying tribute to Avicii with the undeniably massive ‘Levels’ and getting the thousand-strong ravers before him to belt out every word of ‘Wake Me Up’ together is something that won’t be forgotten - it was like being transported to another festival entirely; while watching Patrick Topping’s dad party onstage with his son at the pool party was unexpected to say the least.

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But it was the final pool party - from Sunday lunch time through to 7pm - that was the biggest hit, with Mella Dee and Moxie going back to back then joined by a pizza-eating Annie Mac alongside Glasgow’s Denis Sulta and Australia’s Mall Grab (who had just played for three hours to a lucky few hundred on a high-energy boat party).

As they took turns to get behind the decks, the dancefloor and pool filled up almost instantly for the impromptu takeover full of disco and house classics; it might have been the final day but there was no sign of tiredness – from the crowd or DJs - rather an endless energy and jubilance that everyone was there to share the experience.

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Words: Ben Jolley

Lost & Found Festival returns in 2019 from May 2nd - 5th 2019. For tickets visit www.lostandfoundfestival.com/2019.php

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