11 Songs

EDITORS’ NOTES

They claim Milwaukee as their base, but Hugh Bob & The Hustle make a pungent mixture of rawboned country and heartland rock inspired by the hardscrabble environs of tiny Butternut, Wis., the hometown of lead singer/songwriter Hugh Masterson. “Ashland County” and “North Country” combine the sonic grit of ‘70s Southern rock with a sharp eye for lyric detail, reminiscent of early Dylan and Gordon Lightfoot. “Butternut” is a particularly vivid slice of small-town life, served up by Masterson with believably conflicted emotions. When they choose, the band can veer toward the rambunctious side of contemporary country, as “This Bar Is a Prison” and “Mess with Me” (featured on TV’s Nashville) show. “Blame Me” has the honky tonk jauntiness of Buck Owens, while “Red, White & Blue Jeans” rekindles Gram Parsons' cosmic cowboy vibe. Contributions from alt-country singer Nikki Lane, fiddler Nathaniel Markman (Edward Sharp & The Magnetic Zeroes), and pedal steel player Jon Graboff (Ryan Adams, The Cardinals) add to the impact of this first release by this scrappy, straight-shooting combo.

EDITORS’ NOTES

They claim Milwaukee as their base, but Hugh Bob & The Hustle make a pungent mixture of rawboned country and heartland rock inspired by the hardscrabble environs of tiny Butternut, Wis., the hometown of lead singer/songwriter Hugh Masterson. “Ashland County” and “North Country” combine the sonic grit of ‘70s Southern rock with a sharp eye for lyric detail, reminiscent of early Dylan and Gordon Lightfoot. “Butternut” is a particularly vivid slice of small-town life, served up by Masterson with believably conflicted emotions. When they choose, the band can veer toward the rambunctious side of contemporary country, as “This Bar Is a Prison” and “Mess with Me” (featured on TV’s Nashville) show. “Blame Me” has the honky tonk jauntiness of Buck Owens, while “Red, White & Blue Jeans” rekindles Gram Parsons' cosmic cowboy vibe. Contributions from alt-country singer Nikki Lane, fiddler Nathaniel Markman (Edward Sharp & The Magnetic Zeroes), and pedal steel player Jon Graboff (Ryan Adams, The Cardinals) add to the impact of this first release by this scrappy, straight-shooting combo.

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Customer Reviews

5 out of 5

15 Ratings

Sip it slow, Milwaukee's best

Queebs,

Hugh Masterson and his band of hustlers have managed to capture all that is summer in Wisconsin and have distilled it into a near perfect debut album. Assembled from the best talent Milwaukee harbors in its Lake Michigan shores; Hugh Robert Masterson, Nicholas Stuart, Bradley Kruse, Quinn Scharber, Justin Krol will break your heart with this honest slice of Americana. Ashland county stands out as personal favorite but unlike so many of its contemporaries this album deserves a full beginning to end listen.

Awesome.

MKEBeats,

Recently moved to stupid LA for MkE...how refreshing, and toe-tappin' awesome.

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