Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Dot To Dot Festival, Manchester, 22nd May 2015 8/10

Dot to Dot is a vast festival, with over 200 acts, which means each person's experiences will vary wildly. This time, I decided to eschew the head liners at Manchester Cathedral, and remain in the Northern Quarter for some of the smaller venues; below are photos of my top five.

1) Hinds 9/10
Formerly known as Deers, this youthful Madrid band exuded joy and happiness through their garage rock, and created an incredibly enthusiastic atmosphere amidst the crowd. This was an amazingly invigorating experience.

2) Best Coast 8/10
Bethany Costentino’s humour wasn't always comprehended by the crowd at this late stage in the evening, but I was struck by her vocal ability, and the precise sound tight sound of the band, which belies their slacker persona.

3) PINS 8/10
PINS is perhaps the most outstanding young Manchester band, and the only disappointment here was the that they’d only just got into the groove when their set was cut, after 30 minutes on stage. They would have justified a higher place on the billing, and a much longer set, but Dot to Dot was a great introduction to those who hadn't already caught them supporting Sleater-Kinney.

4) Honeyblood 8/10
Dot to Dot was one of the final events at the much loved, gritty Manchester venue The Roadhouse, and it was absolutely packed for the low-fi Glaswegian duo, who exuded raw energy. Singer and guitarist Stina Tweeddale was ferocious: it will give me a new perspective on their début album.

5) White 7.5/10
Another Scottish band, White's energy and stagecraft were a revelation when I saw them last month supporting Will Butler. Their performance at Dot to Dot demonstrated this impact once again, but sadly the audience was far sparser than they deserved. Happily, there were reports of a much larger, dancing crowd in Bristol the following night; Mancunians didn't fully appreciatewhat they were missing.

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