If there is a weakness in the Dot to Dot line up it’s the headliners, quite frankly they are rubbish – for the last 2 years they have been bands who if they were going to make it they would have done so long before now.  Rather than the very best of the up an coming for the last couple of years they have been the second best of the just going.

To at least be fair Dot to Dot are competing with the Radio 1 big weekend and people have flitted between Dot to Dot and Radio 1, and in the past one local artist simply did not come to Nottingham having done the first 2 days.  I’d almost put money on them not now being able to get Bastille who were on the Rock City stage at 3pm on a wet Dot to Dot Sunday a few years ago – and they shone then!

The treasure this year was (as in the past) in the early afternoon and mostly on the smaller stages, of everyone the one person who stood out was Hannah Grace in a filled room,  with her dark smokey voice she simply sung the blues – and WOW.

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We were treated to bands and artists from all over the world plus allot of UK talent, and this year some bands got the Red Room at Rescue rooms  absolutely right, it’s a tiny space and it is easy to overpower it, and lit with a single light it was an intimate venue with great sound a feeling of being part ofI saw Face and later Haus there, and as before it was out of there into the main stage where I saw Swmrs, Estrons, Georgie, Cloves and Crosa Rosa.

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This took us from hard core rock, post punk to ballads and indy all in a few short sets. There were bands with out a hair out of place and must have been nice middle class boys – but they did not really feel it, there were the new just finding their way and regulars who have played Dot to Dot many times. In all this I did find time to nip into Stealth and see some of the smaller acts in this dark and intimate little space Rivers and Raphaella Music were 2 of many on this stage.

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I was willing to keep an open mind on the headliners and went to both the Augustines and the Mystery Jets sets – the sound on the former was  poor, and the latter were just dull – I even got to wondering  what was wrong with youth of today if I could keep up and I was giving away 30+ years to many in the venue.

But I could easily get out of the Mystery Jets – it was full but not packed and I headed off to see Diet Cig a New York two piece led by Alex Luciano, huge fun, huge energy and a superb set.

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There is no doubt that Dot to Dot has some superb international acts, some good local acts but they really need to sort out the headliners!