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About Nico

Artist/producer Nico is the production mind behind No U-Turn Records and NUT sub-label Nu Black, whose releases by Ed Rush, DJ Trace, Spidernet, and under Nico's own name have been closely associated with the steady darkening of jump-up and techstep-style jungle. Although in particular Ed Rush has recently found wider exposure through his association with Emotif, Grooverider's Prototype imprint, and progressive mainstay Metalheadz, both Nico and No U-Turn (as well as sub-labels Saigon and Nu Black) have benefited from the rise in popularity. Although tracks out under his own name are few (he prefers to work in combination), his work behind the boards engineering such anthems as "Bloodclot Artattack," "Guncheck," and "Mothership," as well as several of the tracks on Emotif's lauded Techsteppin' compilation (so many, in fact, that it listens almost like a NUT best-of!) set him among the most important and influential jungle producers of the mid-'90s.

Prior to his work in the jungle scene, Nico worked in more middle-of-the-road engineering and production; he didn't hear jungle until Ed Rush — who lived just down the block — showed up at his studio with a few records. At first turned off by the brashness of the sound, Nico roped in Rush after an adjustment period and began producing tracks out of his apartment studio. After a string of largely forgettable releases, the pair issued their first record on Nico's newly formed No U-Turn label. Entitled "Bloodclot Artattack," the track's taut, aggressive drums and monster basslines found a small but committed audience among those tiring of jungle's jazzier, more atmospheric turn (c/o of Bukem, Alex Reece, Spring Heel Jack, et. al.). Following a string of moderately received twelves by Rush, Spidernet (Pete Parsons of DeeJay and Lucky Spin), and DJ Trace, as well as the release of Techsteppin' on Emotif, Nico formed the Nu Black label as an experiment. The label issues no dubplates or white labels — signatures of the high turnover scene — and its releases are shipped in plain black sleeves with just a small sticker indicating the artist and release number. The first three releases on the label — "Mothership," "Input," and "Amtrak" — shipped more copies than any previous NUT release, and are widely credited with jungle's return to the darkside.

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