For a night fuelled by punk and hardcore The Triffid hosted two bands just off the back of stellar performances at the sold out heavy festival Unify, down in Tarwin Lower (VIC). With two local supports and two internationals performing tonight punters were getting their money’s worth.

Driven Fear were first up with a heavy start in unison to set the bar for the whole night. Hailing from the Gold Coast, the five piece brought a ripper of a sound to the crowd within The Triffid. Pushing messages through songs in regards to helping others, standing against politicians and a positive stance against bullies, they showed why they deserved to open for an international act (having done so previously for The Bronx). I’m sure 2018 will have it’s fair share of new Driven Fear songs. Nothing will stop these five on their road to success.

Now while Driven Fear has set a bar to be topped I felt like the next band Sensaii didn’t exactly execute their sound well. They sounded out of time and unfortunately for over half their set there was no crowd interaction which gave the feeling like they didn’t exactly want to be there or didn’t feel like putting in the effort. For the second half of their performance I felt like they did step it up a notch although it was still a bit scratchy here and there. This was unfortunate as their stand out was their guitarists Chris and Shaun with their clean vocals. Hoping to see these guys again in a smaller venue to see if it was just this night that they may have been off.

Now the first of the two international acts Knocked Loose were up next. Having heard of them but never listened to them I knew tonight would be interesting. What was a set all about heavy breakdowns and insane mosh pits/circle pits, Knocked Loose vocalist Brian Garris brought his high, ear piercing screams to the table and laid it all out for everyone to witness. What felt like a new taste to hardcore, Knocked Loose provided the audience with the intensity and fun that you want at a gig this size. With a great turn out they conjured more pits than I’ve seen in recent moments, controlling the crowd for the most part of their heavy set.

Being around long enough as a band for your album to be on a ten year anniversary is a luxury these days, but Four Year Strong are still around pushing on bigger than ever in support of that album ‘Rise or Die Trying.’ Performing the album from front to back, they opened with ‘What The Hell Is A Gigawatt?’ and ‘Who Cares.’ With the crowd bursting out of no where and going mental, Four Year Strong provided the goods with pop punk riff central. Running the gauntlet they followed into ‘The Takeover’ and one of my personal favourites ‘Prepare To Be Digitally Manipulated’ much to the excitement of the audience. With the album a bit hit 10 years ago to many of their fans and shaping their career with success, they performed their top hit from the album ‘Bada Bing! Wit’ A Pipe!’ bringing the crowd surfers out and across the sea of punters below. Closing their set with a three song encore of ‘We All Float Down Here’, ‘It Must Really Suck To Be Four Year Strong Right Now, and ‘Wasting Time (Eternal Summer)’ Four Year Strong proved that even after being a band since 2003, they’re still around giving 110% in all performances and they’re still on fans minds 15 years later.

What ended up being a special evening for fans to go back ten years for ‘Rise Or Die Trying’ Four Year Strong proved that they’re still here, and won’t be going away any time soon. With the love of solid fans like tonight they’ll keep pushing on as a band and solidifying their success with epic performances like tonight. Pop punk greatness at its best. Nothing can take that away from me after witnessing this concert at The Triffid.