Junip and Helado Negro
June 15, 2011
Better Than: A Jr. Bacon Cheeseburger.
Roberto Carlos Lange, a South Florida native, is Helado Negro. His parents were in the audience last night. And while groups of chatting women stood directly front of him, loudly talking about what we can assume was nothing, he said, "Let's try to make it special for them."
As Helado Negro, Lange sings like a mature Latin man, emotionally and in Spanish. He's composed, but soulful and sexy with the voice of someone who's older and likely wiser. His stuff is electronic music with a sort of bossa nova sound -- tropical, sleepy, but you can still dance to it. Though harnessing similar energy to Senor Coconut, he's not singing ironically. The music is really lovely and sincere.
Lange talked to the crowd about living up north and someone yelled something about gringos. He responded, "There are many gringos up there. This is true." The wildlife visuals in the background added a sort of an earthly magic to the performance.
Soon, Junip took over the stage. And though the band technically consists of three guys -- Elias Araya, Tobias Winterkorn, and José González -- there were five men onstage making music. With the addition of a bassist and a bongo player, they played a flawless and gorgeous set.
José González is known for his solo music, which is very soft. And there's something about his voice that makes everything he sings sort of muted. It creates an atmosphere of intimacy. Junip's music is smooth. It's like eating ice cream before bed. There's a touch of femininity to this band's sound. It isn't aggressive, even though the music is strong.
The rude crowd really started to shut up and get into it once Junip went up -- not really because the music was beautiful, but mostly because of the bongos. It's Miami. You pound on a pair of bongos, and people will dance. A line of fans sat on the floor close to the stage. And the funny thing was, the crowd was really not young, and certainly didn't look like the kind of people to pop a squat on the floor of a "lounge." Kind of a nice surprise. Guess Junip can even bring the yuppie crowd down to earth.
The Crowd: Largely Latin, older, and loud.
Random Detail: Musicians can never hear themselves when onstage at Bardot.
Overheard in the Crowd: "You didn't even smoke, but you're stoned." And someone yelled, "Jacksonville!!! WOOOOOO!"
-"Rope & Summit"
-"To The Grain"
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-"Sweet & Bitter"