- Until this year, Henning Baer's endeavours have often been in collaboration with others—like his label with Milton Bradley, K209, and the Grounded Theory party and booking agency in Berlin. But Pittsburgh Left, the second EP on his new MANHIGH label, continues an overdue conversation about Baer as a solo artist.
The record shows his taste in strobing bangers—like the waspish, synthy mirage of "Pittsburgh Left"—to be immaculate as ever. But the music falters when it turns to contemplative moods. In foregrounding "AIIM" with repetitive elements, including a two-note pulse and a ticking hi-hat, Baer wants us to notice the subtler motions underneath. There's the whistling wind of an empty subway station, but before long you'll want the track to go somewhere. Kangding Ray's remix of "AIIM" bends the original's metallic noise and metronomic rhythm into bolder angles.
"Canadian Suit" is a stomping DJ tool that twists a high-pass filter over a dripping tap. Splitting the difference between the kinetic energy of "Pittsburgh Left" and the weary tread of "AIIM," it adds the customary variety of Baer's records. In favouring the aggressive stride of Pittsburgh Left's better tracks, it also plays to his strengths.
A2 Pittsburgh Left
B2 AIIM (Kangding Ray Remix)
B3 Canadian Suit