Who: AC/DC.
Where: Western Springs.
When: Last night.

The last time AC/DC were in town, in 1996, they played on the less-than-hallowed turf of Mt Smart Stadium. This time, they were playing an even bigger generational spread at the petrolhead-friendlier Western Springs, the site of many a great rock show.

And this was another - a summer-night blast of stadium rock excess, enjoyed by 50,000 rapt fans. One with bells and whistles (from the steam locomotive that arrived on stage as the opening salvo) and rock'n'roll's oldest juvenile delinquent playing some of the bluntest riffs ever committed to guitar.

Ah, wee Angus. While many of the rest of AC/DC now sport haircuts their faces no longer believe in, the guitarist in the schoolboy uniform, though slightly crumpled himself, remains the star of the show.

Howling cloth-capped singer Brian Johnson may be the ringmaster of this particular circus, but Angus is the clown, the trapeze act and everything besides.

The set of old classics with a smattering of new tracks from last year's Black Ice album didn't always carry enough momentum in the mid-point. The stripper-blues of The Jack seemed to outstay its welcome, while earlier, the likes of Shot Down in Flames reminded fans that Johnson can sound like a male incarnation of Tina Turner, in this case one singing Nutbush City Limits.

But even if AC/DC don't always have the best songs and will never be accused of hidden depths, they know how to take their brilliant basic blueprint and make it go a long long way.

That's helped, of course, by a gargatuan stage with a catwalk the length of an aircraft carrier and a few props - having a giant inflatable gal for Whole Lotta Rosie has always been a neat trick. Making her tap her foot while straddling the locomotive is really something to see.

And as largely a GA affair - with no expensive seats at the front - this was a show that generated its own black T-shirted communal vibe out front too. (And for those about to pay $7.50 for a beer, we salute you too.)

The band's near-relentless energy and various party tricks made for a show that was both big dumb fun as well as a rock'n'roll masterclass.

And that was all helped by a double feature of opening acts, with the Checks delivering their own canny take on howling voice and blues-derived riffage.

It was fun to see a band that features an errant ageing schoolboy being supported by a group who were schoolboys themselves not that long ago.

The other support group, Shihad, showed their reliable ability to rise to the occasion with a high-powered greatest-hits set that did what a warm-up act is meant to do - warm everybody up.