Festival Preview: Dot To Dot 2021
Dot To Dot | 25th September - Bristol
Join the waitlist for tickets here
Dot To Dot Festival has an incredible line up of rising artists this year, from the incessantly glamorous Walt Disco to day-glo punk band Grandmas House, there’s so many unmissable acts that you’re bound to be rushed off your feet heading from venue to venue.
With many of Bristol’s most iconic music venues participating, including The Lanes, Fiddlers, and Rough Trade, there is a veritable smorgasbord of acts and vibes to choose from - whatever your taste in music. Here are our top must-see acts playing on the 25th September!
The queer, femme, punk trio have gone from strength to strength in the last year, releasing banger after chest-thumping banger and performing at some of Bristol’s biggest events, most notably supporting IDLES for their performance on The Downs. Having religiously played every venue in Bristol from 2018, the three piece are set to play further afield with their nationwide tour kicking off on the 15th October. This may be your last chance to catch them in Bristol before their homecoming show at Rough Trade on the 6th November, so make sure to head down to Rough Trade for 8.15pm for their Dot To Dot performance!
The last time I saw Walt Disco was in the sweaty basement of the Exchange. At that point they were relatively unknown, with just the odd whisper of the charismatic band being something that you should probably check out. The room was electric. Lead singer James Power commands the crowd with the energy of an 80s glam icon like a glittering time traveller. The band have rightly rocketed to success, most recently supporting Duran Duran. They’re playing the O2 Academy2 at 9pm.
If you’re in the mood for something a little more low-key but still breathtakingly beautiful, I highly recommend heading over to the Fiddlers for 9pm where Emily Isherwood will be performing. Easily one of the best vocalists on the Bristol scene, Isherwood’s sound is emotive and haunting with strong melodies interlaced with some of the finest vocal hooks around. Having been asked by Jack from Wych Elm to play the stage that they have curated at Fiddlers, it’s clear that the artist is excited to be involved. “I really wanna support everything that Wych Elm do because I love Wych Elm,” gushes Isherwood, “I'm excited to be a part of a line up he's created as I think he's got a really interesting taste in music.”
Wych Elm are cultivating a vibe that is uniquely their own. Unafraid to stand out from the crowd, the gothic four piece are in the process of releasing their new EP Rabbit Wench, which covers themes from abusive relationships to the historic silencing of women. You can find them performing at O2 Academy at 3pm.
Newcomers Anorak Patch are gonna go far. Their skill when it comes to musicianship and songwriting is made all the more impressive when you realise that none of the members are currently old enough to drink. With a sound that is inspired by acts such as Queens of The Stone Age and Black Midi, they’re certainly ones to try and see live. You can see them at Rough Trade at 4:15pm.
The genre-nonconforming boy-girl two piece that is Try Me is one of the most exciting acts to have come out of Bristol in the last year. Their single Heavy Lunch remains one of my all-time favourite songs of 2021 and helpfully doubles as a shopping list for when you’re too hungover to write things down. Their visuals are insane and their production skills expansive. If you’re a fan of acts like Lynks, you’ll love Try Me. “So excited to play it,” says Bendy Wendy, “It has such a wonderful reputation, even though I’ve never been before, so it’s gonna be exciting to perform it and experience it for the first time!” You can catch them at The Lanes Bar at 2pm.
Listening to Billie Marten got me out of a massive slump this year. Her latest album, Flora Fauna, is a joy from start to finish and the perfect accompaniment to a sunny afternoon of painting, baking or indulging in a cathartic activity of your choice. Unblinking in the face of uncomfortable emotions, stand out single Creature Of Mine conjures feelings of bittersweet romanticism at the end of the world, whilst Human Replacement examines the extent women have to go to keep themselves safe. Marten is a phenomenal musician with a stunning voice. You can catch her playing the Bristol Beacon at 8pm.
For a taste of what to expect at Dot To Dot, check out the festival playlist here.
Dot To Dot takes place in Bristol on the 25th September, in various venues around the city. Join the waitlist for tickets here.