An ‘Evening with Oh Romance’ has sophisticated, almost candlelit connotations beyond Rufus T Firefly, the Glaswegian venue of choice — for its budget-friendly and bloody divine menu of White Russians. It’s a dingy punk-rock bar that oozes character but doesn’t ask much of your wallet, and the now-four-piece Oh Romance were already fans. So, here we are, a ‘Drinks with…’ feature.
Recording an interview by phone, over drinks, is a taller order when there’s metal blaring in the background. Regardless, after a medley of beverages, Alex (25), Keir (20) and Blair (22) had a lot to say…
Guys, how the hell are you doing? How’s life in Scotland now that everything’s eased restrictions-wise?
Alex: Aye, we’re all good thanks. It’s definitely so much better now we can go out and do lots more ‘normal’ things again.
Yeaaah, it’s so much better and more flexible now. Catching up in the flesh wouldn’t really have been possible by 2020’s standards!
So, go on then, how did you all meet?
Alex: Keir and I met at a house party and we just clicked straight away, it was as simple as that. We played a few Beatles tracks together and, since then, the rest is history really.
We then found Dave [also of Pinc Wafer, who wasn’t able to join — he was busy earning a crust] through an ad for a bassist and he approached us with a few tunes. The more we worked together, the more the songs just developed.
Blair: They auditioned for drummers and that’s where I fit into the mix. Oddly, it turned out that Alex and I had actually met before through two different, prior bands — we’d both been on the billing for the same gig.
Alex: Small world! It was a sign.
Ah no way!
What do you lot do for day jobs?
Keir: I’m an out-of-employment musician at the moment.
Blair: Both Dave and I are bartenders — not at the same place, though.
Alex: I’m a digital marketing assistant, but also studying advertising at the same time.
Mixed bag, eh?
What’s your drink of choice? [By this point, we were swiftly working our way through Kahlúa-based cocktails and shots…]
Alex: Definitely a Red Stag and coke.
[I don’t drink coke — don’t like the stuff — but I think I had at least one of these myself. Not actually bad.]
Blair: Vodka, blackcurrant and lemonade.
Alex: Dave would have a Punk IPA.
Keir: White Russians, obviously.
You guys embrace everything about your local music scene, but what are the other things you rate most about Glasgow?
Blair: Well, yeah, it’s all about the music scene. But it’s otherwise the boys! I’m moving here from Edinburgh. Glasgow’s such a friendly and welcoming city, and now I have the band. Yes!
Alex: I’m from Aberdeen originally, but there’s just something about Glasgow. It’s different, you know? There are so many knockout things, so it’s just city life that has that appeal generally. But there’s this romanticism to it that I can’t necessarily explain. There’s just heaps to experience!
Oh for sure, I can so appreciate all that.
[Around this time, the drinking was making Keir look a bit pale and he wasn’t at his chattiest. But Alex’s sporadic, intermittent “OH ROMANCE FOR TRNSMT ‘22!” outbursts made up for it.]
Right, so talk me through expanding the band from two members to four…
Alex: The intention was always to have four members, but we incurred some teething problems to begin with. Since then, we’ve been looking for the ideal members really; we’ve seen some people come and go. Eventually, we just felt we had a connection with Dave and Blair, and that’s when we knew we were Oh Romance.
Confident. That’s good. It’s all coming together very nicely then.
Keir: Aye, it took us some time, but the outfit we have now makes it worth it.
Come on then, who’s excited about the gig in November?
Alex: *Emphatically slaps table (there was a lot of that), showing an impressive sleeve of dark tattooed ink* We’re incredibly excited to support our boys from the north, The Capollos. We’re just very humbled that we’ve been given this opportunity.
Blair and Keir: We can’t wait!
We were out for a solid few hours, so it did become an ‘Evening with Oh Romance’ after all. There was a spell of political talk, lots of jibes about certain band members not handling their drink and a fair bit of spraying Versace aftershave EVERYWHERE. It also transpires that pepper in tequila is not a thing — you know, if that had ever been in question. And a few requests to play The Rolling Stones fell on deaf ears, too. But, most importantly, my imitated Scottish accent is now Aberdonian-approved.
We had such a laugh, all in all. It’s a blessing to meet the rising talent I’ve been promoting on Record Weekly for a while.
Haven’t listened to Oh Romance yet? Where have you been? Get over to Spotify now, and make sure you’re following them on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook while you’re at it. You can also source tickets for their Broadcast gig on 27th November through the link in their bio as well.
MON THE OHs.