Icee Hot is a feeling. At least that’s what the party’s founders like to say. In reality, Icee Hot is just a party that generally happens once a month in San Francisco, one that also abides a few simple—albeit important—rules. No party photographers. No guestlist. No set times. No requests. No hula hoops. Yes vibes. Yes jams. Yes rave rain. Yes pizza. And, most importantly, if it’s cute, let it happen.
These guidelines might sound silly, but Icee Hot is the kind of party that keeps it simple. When Shawn Reynaldo (who happens to spend his days as the editor of XLR8R), Ghosts on Tape, Low Limit (also known as one half of Lazer Sword), and Rollie Fingers first banded together in January of 2010, their goals didn’t extend much beyond playing good tunes in small room with big sound and a cheap door price. Yes, the early days of Icee Hot were defined by the quartet’s shared enthusiasm for the rash of innovative sounds emanating from the UK at the time, but strict genre boundaries were never part of the plan. Various strains of techno, house, garage, grime, funky, and experimental weirdness, not to mention all the unclassifiable points in between, have all had their time to shine at Icee Hot. This spirit of diversity is perhaps best reflected by the wide range of guest DJs and live acts that the party has hosted over the years, most of whom were making their San Francisco debut.
Now, as Icee Hot approaches its third birthday, the crew has decided to take its curatorial skills to the next level, launching a record label charged with delivering the same sort of quality music that people have become accustomed to hearing on its dancefloor. The first release comes from party co-founder Ghosts on Tape, and will be followed in close succession by efforts from Lando Kal (the other half of Lazer Sword, who’s previously delivered stellar solo efforts on Hotflush and Rush Hour), Montreal duo Grown Folk, New York producer and TURRBOTAX® co-founder Contakt, and Low Limit. (It should be pointed out that apart from crafting top-shelf tunes, Low Limit also designs all of the Icee Hot flyers and artwork.)
Beyond that, the possibilities are endless, but Icee Hot’s founders have every intention of making their new label a reliable source for quality new music. The styles explored may vary, but the crew’s dedication to timeless sounds and aversion to mindless trend-chasing will hopefully keep things moving in the right direction. However it turns out, it’s definitely going to be cute, which means Icee Hot will let it happen. There’s also a good chance pizza will be involved.