TRIBUTE bands are not really my cup of tea, and I’m not particularly a Pink Floyd aficionado, so it was with some trepidation that I approached this combination of the two.

But to call The Australian Pink Floyd Show (TAPFS) a tribute act would be to do them an incredible disservice – they are so much more than that.

This was a show, a spectacle, an event, an homage – with note-perfect Floyd music anchoring a performance full of visual effects.

Fast approaching their 30th year and still packing out large venues, TAPFS seem to get better and more extravagant. This is now a major brand, an Australian success story.

Here, the 10-piece band – still led by founders Jason Sawford and Steve Mac but a relatively fluid affair – played the classic album Dark Side Of The Moon in its entirety in the first half and a driving selection of tunes after the interval.

Vocalist Chris Barnes, coolly exiting the stage during the inevitably long instrumental sections, is a perfect fit for TAPFS along with relatively new bassist/singer Ricky Howard, who voiced the mellower moments.

And it was good for once to hear something loud enough to feel the bass thudding through your body, such as on the DSotM epic Money.

Another Brick In The Wall Parts 1 and 2 was the first half show-stopper, with a giant, inflatable teacher character only slightly letting the side down by deflating halfway through.

TAPFS really do chuck the kitchen sink at the performance in terms of their sensational light show – the breath-taking lasers never better than when replicating twanging guitar strings during the intro to Wish You Were Here.

The fast-paced video clips are brilliantly done: referencing the songs being played; getting political at the right moments and reverently remembering the late, great Floyd stars Syd Barrett and Rick Wright.

And the whole thing is put together with Aussie humour, such as the inflatable dancing kangaroo, the Kylie/Neighbours/AC DC/Men At Work mentions and the inevitable giant floating pig.

Tracks included Arnold Layne, Shine On You Crazy Diamond, Learning To Fly, Sheep, One Of These Days, Run Like Hell and a storming finale Comfortably Numb, by which time then audience had hauled themselves to their feet.

A memorable evening – highly recommended to even the most strident tribute band/progressive rock critics.