REVIEW festival Old Subbacultcha Old Subbacultcha

Join The Dots: Top 5 Bands To See At Dot To Dot Festival

The festival season got off to a flying start with a number of high profile events such as Live At Leeds and Liverpool Sound City a few weeks ago. But with the truly scorching weather of summer a few weeks away, and with forecasts being as interchangeable as they usually are at this time of year, it’ll be a little while before we’ll all feeling brave enough to spend a weekend camped out in a field catching our favourite bands.


Step in the ‘metropolitan’ festival. Taking place under the shelter of venue roofs and dotted sporadically around the concrete jungles of city centres (no muddy traipses to the bar, see?), these events are steadily growing in popularity and size.

The next such festival to pop up on the musical calendar is Dot To Dot festival, a touring line-up of bands that will travel between three cities this weekend, and winner of Best Metropolitan Festival at the UK Festival Awards 2013. This year’s edition promises to be the biggest yet, and will see hundreds of bands invading the local gig spaces of Manchester, Nottingham and Bristol and showcasing the very best of their musical wares.

As is often the case for this type of event, the line-up at first glance is staggeringly busy, with enough names to have even the most ardent music fans shaking in their boots as they check their clash finders. So we here at Subba thought we’d help you out a little and let you in on five of the bands we’ll be hoping to see as the festival rolls into Manchester on Friday...


Manchester // Midnight @ Sound Control Loft

Nottingham // 6pm @ Rescue Rooms (Subculture Stage)

Bristol // 8.15pm @ Thekla

Two piece drums and guitar outfit from the south coast, these punk upstarts sing about girls having fights on a Saturday night out (but not in a cringey laddish way like the Pigeon Detectives probably would) and the location of a friend’s car on ‘Where’s Your Car, Debbie?’ It all adds up to a blood boiling bubble of three chord fun that doesn’t take itself too seriously, and could soon be filling grotty punk clubs up and down the country. Expect rabid requests for smash ‘hit’ ‘Beauty Quest’:

Wolf Alice

Manchester // 9.30pm @ Gorilla

Bristol // 11pm @ Thekla

Nottingham // 6.15pm @ RockCity

London grunge starlets Wolf Alice now have recently released EP Creature Songs tucked firmly under their belts and will be looking to unleash those new tracks on unsuspecting live crowds. ‘Moaning Lisa Smile’ could be their best song yet and ‘Storms’ bristles with fuzz guitars like an amped of version of Peace’s ‘Money’. ‘Heavenly Creatures’ and ‘We’re Not The Same’ showcase the softer side of Ellie Rowsell and co, so it’ll be interesting to see in which direction they take it come the weekend.

God Damn

Manchester // 11pm @ Sound Control Club

Bristol // 11.30pm @ Thekla Top Deck

Nottingham // 11pm @ Spanky Van Dykes

Another loud and noisy two-piece, God Damn originally started life as a three-piece but are down a member while guitarist Dave Copson recovers from injuries he received in a nasty car crash last summer. Their tenacity to continue even in the face of this adversity should give you some indication as to the balls-to-the-wall levels of energy you’ll be letting yourself in for should you add them to your Dot To Dot itinerary. Hailing from Birmingham (the home of hard riffing metal) and signed to Norwich’s ever noisy Gravy Records, expect head banging and moshing no matter which of the three cities you’re in.


Manchester // 10pm @ The Ritz

Bristol // 10pm @ O2 Academy

Nottingham // 10pm @ RockCity

Filling the sort-of-headliner slot (in terms of size, if not placing on the bill) are Peace, currently promoting their soon to be released second album and playing a handful of relatively low-key shows before they hit the touring road proper in a couple of weeks. Expect bags of new tunes as well as the usual crowd pleasing indie bangers in some of the festival’s bigger venues.

The Pizza Underground

Manchester // Midnight @ Zoo

Bristol // Midnight @ Thekla

Nottingham // 7.15pm @ RockCity

For bonus hipster/’ironic veneration of shit band ideas’ points, cart yourself off to catch The Pizza Underground, Macaulay Culkin’s (he of Home Alone, that one Sonic Youth video, and being Michael Jackson’s friend fame) pizza themed Velvet Underground covers band. With songs like ‘Take A Bite Of The Wild Slice’ and ‘I’m Waiting For Delivery Man’, only you can decide if it’s genius performance art or the most awfully surreal experience of your life. Either way, be sure to continue the meta t-shirt mini-game Culkin and Ryan Gosling seem to have gotten themselves into lately.


As always, this is just a brief cross section of the hundreds of bands playing across the festival(s) over the weekend, be sure to check out the line-up and stage times of each locale before making an informed decision on your plans. A .pdf of the stage times for each city can be found by clicking HERE.

Tickets for Dot To Dot are a very reasonable £20 for the day and can be bought by clicking on THIS LINK.