LIVE PREVIEW: Dot to Dot Festival 2017

The annual music showcase returns for the May bank holiday weekend, running between 26th May – 28th May across three UK cities. Taking in Manchester, Bristol and Nottingham, Dot to Dot Festival is the premier destination for rising talent and emerging sounds. The multi-venue gig hop for its 2017 programme promises music fans a plethora of genre-bending treats from across the world, featuring the likes of Reading cool kids Sundara Karma, Californian rockers The Griswolds and Glasgow’s garage-pop sweethearts Honeyblood.

After careful deliberation we’ve worked through the newly announced additions, to bring all you lovely readers a glance into this year’s Dot to Dot Festival.

Jordan Allen

Social discourse, coming of age tales, and huge indie anthems combine as Jordan Allen’s prime artillery, a mix of classic ’00s rabble rousing will ensue. Think Arctic Monkeys transversing with The Streets, leading the procession will be ‘110 Ways to Make Things Better’, Allen at his rowdy and pertinent best. Even the most composed in the crowd will loose their cool to this one.

Swimming Tapes 

There’s always a glimmer of sunshine rising in our mind when we think of this London band, the five-piece pull together the wistful with the breezy to create a woozy guitar-pop daydream. Recalling the melodic fanfare of Day Wave and Real Estate, Swimming Tapes’ set promises fireworks of the sweetest kind, don’t dally.

Artificial Pleasure

New band on the block Artificial Pleasure aren’t lacking expertise, rather the London four-piece thrive in the live environment. Thrilling the limbs in an out-of-control partnership with their tight rhythm section, steely eyed but pliable grooves and rambunctious energy. Don’t let the pressure of public dancing put you off, the funk will inevitably grab you, and so the love affair will start.


Dot to Dot alumni and bonded by lineage, the brother/sister duo conjure a sound pure of enchantment and wild allure. Seeming like a clandestine calling for the pair, songs like ‘Over The River’ and ‘The Valley’ see Katy and Rob Pearson become torchbearers of elegant pop, pristine vocals tie together mature songcraft and accentuate the band’s prowess. File next to Lana Del Rey and London Grammar.

Gothic Tropic

California native Cecilia Della Peruti acts out her indie pop dream with music project Gothic Tropic. A Warpaint-meets-Haim slumber party, neu-pop with a gold star in funky bass rhythms and fresh vocals. Gothic Tropic will deliver the sonic blast of sunshine that just might be lacking from the UK’s mid-Spring weather forecast.


For this New York duo, harmonies are their bread and butter, when their voices come together its heaven-sent. Their Dot to Dot debut will see the ladies performing tracks from their new album ‘YOUNG’, a collection of electronically minded alt-pop songs that filter in a new drama to the classically trained folk genre. They sing about what it is to be twenty-something and living the big city life, I don’t know about you but to me that sounds very relatable.


London four piece ISLAND are no strangers to the stage, already 2017 has seen them travelling across the continent and their home country with fellow D2D performers Amber Run and Palace. Expect soaring reverb, poignant lyricism, cutting vocals and a heap-load of hair swaying in beautiful motion. ISLAND in a nutshell.

Nilufer Yanya 

The contemporary folk scene bares many great new names under its wing that are redefining what it means to be a singer of real life experience and tales of the wider world, Nilufer Yanya is one of the greatest talents to arise out of this new wave. Her playful melodies and unorthodox time signature shifts are just as much story devices as her lyrics, creating suspense and intrigue on record, it’ll be interesting to see how this translates live. An artist that doesn’t play by the rules is equally as exciting to listen to and watch, as they are also impossible to define.

The Slow Readers Club 

The upward trajectory of this Manchester four-piece gives hope to all up and coming bands – drive, persistence and continual belief in your craft does eventually win out in the end. Without label backing or any major investor involved, The Slow Readers Club have seen their circle of fans grow exponentially over the last 12 months, from tours with local legends James, guest spots on BBC 6Music, huge headline slots across the country, the word is seemingly out about the hallowed psalms of our favourite indie-electro purveyors. Catch the band at Dot to Dot and be ahead of the curve.


With only one cut available to stream online at present, this small matter should be overlooked for the accomplished whisk of Band Of Horses indie that glides effortlessly alongside The War of Drugs-esque wistful dreaminess. C.Macleod’s misty soft rock is simply too smile-inducing to be at odds with, it must be lapped up and enjoyed for its simple pleasures. For melodic textures, unfurling fragrant lyricism and gorgeous vocals, C.Macleod’s set is a must.

Dot to Dot Festival takes place across multiple venues over the course of the all-dayers in Manchester, Bristol and Nottingham. Priced at £13.20 for the day, it’s a great deal for the amount of music that’s on offer, for more information and to purchase tickets head here.

Charlotte Holroyd
Editor, Creator and Founder of Bitter Sweet Symphonies. A lover of music and cinema, who's constantly attending gigs and in search of a great experience.

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