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Posted on july 20, 2023

FRESH JUICE: ‘Better Be Careful’ by Rassan (Nice & Deadly)

Brazilian label and party series Nice & Deadly return with their 21st release coming from co-founder Rassan with the rousing bass of ‘Better Be Careful’, fired home with a deadly remixing effort from Stones Taro.

Words by Oisín Campbell/ Design by Michael Savage

Buy/ Stream here: https://nicendeadly.bandcamp.com/album/nd021-better-be-careful-ep

Nice & Deadly have carved out their position as a key label in Brazil’s booming bass movement of today since forging back in 2016. Founded by Rassan with friends Stenio Freitas (Data Assault) & Lorrayne Collares, their premise was to embed a nurturing home for the many electronic talents coming out of their home city of Brasilia and the surrounding areas. Now 7 years into their operation, they’ve become a home to some of Brazil’s essential players in electro, footwork, bass & beyond, with the likes of CRAZED, ERAM, & Martinelli all joining the ranks of production.

It was Rassan himself who got the sounds moving on the imprint alongside Ogro when they first sprinkled their samba touch on the dub heavy ‘Rock It Again’ EP in 2016. Heavily influenced by bass music and soundsystem culture, Rassan has since contributed to labels like Anexo, Yellow Island, & Maai, as well as being a key former member of Brasilia’s infamous Confronto Soundsystem.

Rassan cover pic

(Pictured: Rassan)

Opening with a well-crafted ode to the UK hardcore continuum, ‘Saxon Dub’ sets Rassan’s direction in sound well into place on this release. Initializing with a flurry of chirpy hats and shimmying snares, the track’s 2 step bedding is bolstered by hefty rave stabs, soundboy lyricism and a deep hovering bassline that's all kept in line with some heavily rooted kicks.

‘Slide ‘N’ Wine’ continues to wave the UK inspired flag with a pure groove garage number that confides in elements of bassline and a fair share of wub. Towering sub bass tremors blur the lines between funk and dark within each breakdown before falling back into the track’s initial fun-lovin’ shuffle.

Dubstep meets funky on the kick-charged throttle of ‘Up To No Good’. Rassan’s ability to weave in and out of the different foundations of bass is at its most striking here, with a swift yet smooth transition through the reverberating channels of dub into glistening, dancey half-time situations.

Title-track and the penultimate effort on the EP, ‘Better Be Careful’ locks on to a weighted series of dark breaks and bass hums with an appropriate fix of samples from early jungle and hardcore, creating a well-screwed hybrid of the old skool and the nu.

Kyoto’s Stones Taro closes up shop with his take on ‘Saxon Dub’, adding a truly inexplicable bass line alongside alarming vocal chops to give the original working an unrecognisable face lift. A trusty surgeon, Mr. Taro!

Stones Taro cover pic

(Pictured: Stones Taro)

Nice & Deadly continue to thrust the Brasilia bass world into its necessary position. They’ve exceeded their own expectations, now pushing their sounds into the hands of the wheels of steel’s elite. Rassan brings yet another ruckus to this passionate consortium of bass, rave and hardcore. Catalogue number 22 arrives next month with another mouth-watering entry to come from Moogie Fox (see here: https://nicendeadly.bandcamp.com/album/nd022-biochemical-stasis )

Discover & enjoy the extended Nice & Deadly discography here: https://nicendeadly.bandcamp.com