Although albums are generally far more cohesive, "Best Of" packages can provide a sterling service in cherry-picking the highlights of an erratic career. For this reason 'The Very Best Of Nick Heyward & Haircut One Hundred' should be very useful but as it is restricted to Heyward's signing to Arista Records, the story stops in 1986. Although a skimpy four tracks are taken from Heyward's former band, the choices are well made especially the evergreen 'Love Plus One' and the less-heralded but no less great 'Nobody's Fool', proving that Haircut One Hundred deserved to be spoken of in the same breath as the considerably more respected Orange Juice. Heyward wasn't slow in establishing himself on his own terms; 'Whistle Down The Wind' was released a mere 7 months after 'Nobody's Fool'. It was a quality song too and along with 'Blue Hat For A Day' and 'On A Sunday' he had a trio of great, fragrant loverlorn pop singles under his belt and the solo move appeared to be a good decision. At least it was until the slew of over-produced singles which followed. Slap bass, fairlight organs and, basically, weak songs characterise the final six tracks, save 'Laura', a brief return to Heyward's fine, optimistic tunesmithery. Indeed, 'Over The Weekend' resembles a spectacularly poor version of Wham's already dire 'I'm Your Man'. In fairness, Heyward has produced better work since but at least this restricted collection proves that few did chunky-jumper, fresh-faced pop as effectively as this.