Baauer – Aa

Album Review by George Sully | 02 Mar 2016
Album title: Aa
Artist: Baauer
Label: LuckyMe
Release date: 18 Mar

Since signing to LuckyMe in 2012, prodigal New York producer Baauer has enjoyed criticial acclaim, notably for his Dum Dum and ß EPs, but also for various exciting collaborations and one particularly viral meme. But, where the Harlem Shake fad was global but anonymising, his debut record Aa – a tight half-hour showcase of his considerable production talents – should put Harry Bauer Rodrigues' name firmly on the map of contemporary electronic music.

Whether it’s tribal percussion (Church, the M.I.A.-featuring Temple), hip-hop in the form of UK grime (MC Novelist on the brassy Day Ones) and US rap (Pusha T and Future on Kung Fu), Eastern cyberfunk à la Daft Punk (Pinku), or Brazilian-pop-sampling (Sow), Aa persists as an agile, flexible beast, and Baauer’s commitment to found sounds and unique samples keeps it bristlingly organic.

But perhaps most exciting – and characteristic – is the titular epilogue, Aa. In 75 seconds, it hops distractedly from screamo samples, to Jersey Club, to lurid acid garage, to ambient bird sounds. And that’s it. That’s Aa. It’s confidently compressed, and where this kind of urban dance music can serve as a vehicle for ego, Rodrigues' deft arrangements and choice guests speak for him – and speak volumes.