Nuevo Culture

LISTEN: Omar Apollo Yearns for Acceptance in New Piano Ballad “Ice Slippin”

In his first track since the killer “3 Boys”, Indiana-based singer-songwriter Omar Apollo follows his heart with a more mature sound, giving way to more emotional melodies and moody undertones, bound by a piano-fronted instrumental that opens his audience to a genuine yet darker side to Latine familial relationships. 

“Ice Slippin” can be seen as one of the most vulnerable and relatable songs in the singer’s arsenal yet, showcasing Apollo’s incredible use of imagery in songwriting to paint two separate narratives that coincide and eventually reconvene to accompany a lonesome overtone. 

From the first few chords of the melody to the very first bar of the chorus, “Ice Slippin” offers an introspective look not only at Apollo’s life but into the lives and difficulties facing queer people all throughout the Latine diaspora. 

There’s a duality in imagery present in Apollo’s lyricism. On one end, colorful language describes a realm seeped in cool greys that physically describe a city missing the warmth and vibrancy of future cities Apollo would call home, while the other describes the disappointing interaction between Apollo and his family after coming out as queer. 

The song’s first few lines hit very close to home for particular ears. “When you coming home // home is where you’re supposed to be turn around its not too late // did I hurt you you live too far away are you turning off your phone again // if I take back my words would you return to me”. 

This messaging parallels a similar plight in immigrant communities, one familiar to the Chicano musician. As he escapes from the city in search of opportunity and exploration of a better future for himself, he’s met with stern opposition and criticism. Criticism not to his yearning to dream but to the freedom of being himself. 

Throughout the song, Apollo uses this study of “ice” to describe Indiana’s cold and lonesome streets to the misunderstood feeling of not being accepted by his parents. This eventually leads to the narrative that through the distance, Apollo will continue to live his life in its full glory while he waits for the real dream of being accepted by his loved ones for his full self. 

Aside from the typical teasing of the track through socials, the Indiana singer took promotion a step further by placing three ice sculptures of himself throughout various locations to match the “icy” atmosphere, as seen on his Instagram.

“Ice Slippin” comes with the announcement of a new EP following 2022’s IvoryLive For Me is slated to drop on October 6th via Warner Records.