Robert Carlos Lange’s musical background is as varied as his upbringing; a South Florida Native born to Ecuadorian parents, he attended the Savannah College of Art and Design in Savannah, Georgia, later moving to Brooklyn. Musically, he has worked in electronica, collaborating with producer Guillermo Scott Herren in Savath & Savalas and Prefuse 73, and he has dabbled in the rock and pop collectives School of Seven Bells and Bear in Heaven.
Lange’s newest project, Helado Negro, infuses both his heritage and his club tendencies, melding Caribbean rhythms, electro-undercurrents, and Spanish vocals into a danceable, unique and flavorful amalgam called Awe Owe. Native color and urban tones blend with the easy pageantry of a summer parade on a red-hot street, the temperature slowing the tempo but not the groove. There are hits and misses here, though. At the heart of the release is texture, and while some tracks use supple layers to advance the music (“Venceremos,” “Espuma Negra”), others languish in repetition (“Dahum,” “Playa”), interrupting an otherwise consistent, flowing synthesis of old world style and new world instrumentation.
Awe Owe is out now on Asthmatic Kitty Records.