Nick Hughes is a true modern-day guitar slinger. You might have seen him perform with the Yo Yo’s, Role models, Love Zombies, or in more recent years the incredible Duncan Reid and the Bigheads.

Now is the time that Nick has decided to step out on his own and bring his songwriting talents to the masses with his band The Middlenight Men and their debut album titled ‘Issue #1’.

“Rat Star” kicks off this impressive debut and it’s just a great slice of power-pop-punk with a great riff and a chorus that instantly lodges into the listener’s brain box.

“B.A. Baby” is another great melodic rocker guaranteed to get the listener jumping around and the lyrics, let’s just say, they give us an insightful look into Nick’s personal life.

‘You (getting over)’ is a song about lost love but with its uplifting melody, it is another fantastic track.

Now this reviewer likes to have a favourite track and ‘Heroine Heights’ is this albums top of the pops. With an album as good as this it’s hard to pick a standout we all like lists and categories (it helps make the world go round) but this epic slice of pop genius is a sure-fire winner. With a driving riff and some crashing drums, it is a real foot stomper. (Also, check out the epic video you will not be disappointed)

Pushing  ‘Heroine Heights’ closely is ‘Prison of love’ another strong track with a driving rhythm that keeps the album flowing with quality.

‘Extro Intro’ slows the pace down a bit but it’s a truly beautiful song with some heartfelt lyrics and a gorgeous melody.

“We all need help before tomorrow” is a pop song on steroids and is a banger of a tune.  ‘They’ll be the ones’ is a monster of a track with a sharp – brutal riff and with added brass shows Nick likes to shake things up as well as show off his talents as a multi-instrumentalist. It also shows the important quality of having a great chorus.

“Budapest Brawler” also fits in perfectly with the high quality of everything that has gone before it maintaining the flow really well.

Bringing this impressive album to a close is ‘Sleep’ and what a track to finish. With its stunning piano intro that leads the way into a truly beautiful guitar melody, it’s the perfect statement with which to finish the album.

As debut albums go I can safely say that Nick Hughes should take a bow,  he has created a classic power pop rock album that will reward the listener with each repeated listen and has maintained the quality throughout, with each song brimming with stunning melodies and infectious choruses that will keep you going back for more, more, more.


Author: Gareth Hotshot Hooper