Wish You Were Here from Oz

The Australian Pink Floyd
The Australian Pink Floyd
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The Australian Pink Floyd - Preston Guild Hall

It turns out a huge kangaroo, a clip from Neighbours and some of the best rock music ever recorded go well together.

Syd Barrett, Roger Waters, David Gilmour and co never made it to Preston so when the Australian Pink Floyd paid their latest visit, discerning Floyd fans weren’t going to let the opportunity pass.

And I’m sure they didn’t go home disappointed.

Aussie Floyd have built up a reputation over the years for their attention to detail and now exist on a higher plane than a mere cover band or one of those freakish Stars in Their Eyes clones churning out slavish copies.

Before a packed Guild Hall these down-to-earth geezers perfectly recreated classic tracks everyone knows but with a subtly gritty edge of their own. A slick light and graphics display helped create that Floyd feel.

The show started with Astronomy Domine the only pre-1970s song of the night before launching into a run through iconic album Wish You Were Here, which celebrates its 40th anniversary this year. Opening track Shine on You Crazy Diamond was thrillingly brought to life on stage by impassioned playing and excellent backing singers.

The second half mostly took tracks from Dark Side of the Moon, The Wall and Division Bell – all delivered to a rapturous response.

Memorable moments included a 20-ft high pink kangaroo moshing to One of These Days (hopping up and down with glee to the lyrics ‘One of these days I’m going to cut you into little pieces’) and The Great Gig in the Sky where the famous screaming woman vocal was faultlessly shared by three female singers. The audience of mostly 40/50-somethings were on their feet as the night came to a rousing end with Comfortably Numb. A two-song encore, including a track from new Floyd album The Endless River, gave them what they wanted.

James Reader