Album: Helado Negro – Far In review

by Philip Moss

Roberto Carlos Lange distils his work to date into a near perfect fifteen song cycle

Special music can often feel effortless – almost as if it has appeared to its creator fully formed. And Far In very much has this feel. A collection so intrinsic and instinctive, it is at peace with itself.

Far In provides a soothing balm – swapping recent experimentations in lo-fi, analogue folk, and genre hopping for a fog of synth based new age ambience – making it the perfect to soundtrack the hectic nature of modern life. Following the more crossover moments of his last album, This is How You Smile, it would have been easy for Lange to chase instant gratification. But that’s perhaps what makes new label, 4AD, the ideal home. Far In, instead, still provides sing-a-long refrains like There Must Be A Song Like You, but in a gentler, more considered way – while burying them within a bigger picture.

Very much a song cycle, it is a record of peaks and troughs, but not in quality. It is infectious in different ways – in its mood, vibe and atmosphere. Lange’s expert curation of Far In‘s track listing means its shining highs cut through its sea of calm at the right moments. The gentle disco of Gemini and Leo, and Hometown Dream bring together career best melodies and grooves. But to listen to them in isolation would be to miss the point – Far In is a collection that demands and deserves your time in order for its near perfection to seep into your psyche.

Far In doesn’t have danceable moments in the same way that This Is How You Smile did. It is subtly emotive – affecting through its ‘feel’. Music to drive to, relax with, cook dinner to, live with – how you choose to let Far In into your life is left down to you; just make sure you do.

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