Home / Music / Artist Interviews / INTERVIEW: Oil Boom
Photo Credit: Annie Nelson


Hi Steve, welcome to VENTS! How have you been? 

We are great! We’re currently gearing up for the holidays. It’s always a blast watching the Christmas merchandise replace the Halloween stuff in the seasonal section at Target.

Can you talk to us more about your latest single “Earful”? 

It came about after Ryan got a lecture from his dad about how it’s never too early to take down the Halloween decorations and put up the Christmas ones, as long as the Halloween decorations don’t come down until November 1 and the Christmas ones don’t go up until December 1. He got an “earful” of advice!

Did any event in particular inspire you to write this song? 

It was an event called the 1990s, when Blur and the Stone Roses wrote and performed songs. Twenty-something years later, we accidentally made a song that vaguely reminded us of Britpop jams we heard long ago. It was also inspired by Ryan making a terrible decision and learning to not beat himself up too badly about it. He won’t tell us what the decision was, but I’m pretty sure it rhymes with “purchasing a copy of the Spaghetti Incident and experiencing buyer’s remorse.”

The single comes off your new album Terribility – what’s the story behind the title? 

Terribility is a name of a concept we’ve been discussing for a long time, basically, how everything in life, no matter how seemingly good or positive, can become terrible, either by its own intrinsic merits, someone else’s criticism, someone else’s advice, or by someone not washing his or her hands after going to the bathroom. Think of an adorable grandma at a wedding, and then think about her after she has four margaritas and starts being mean to people. That’s terribility.

How was the recording and writing process? 

Often fun, usually long, full of laughter, and shot-through with frustration as the process dragged out over two years. 

What was it like to work with Jordan Richardson and how did that relationship develop? 

He is an incredible producer who encourages you to try new arrangements, tonal ideas, and foods. For example, we often take dinner breaks at a Chili’s in Roanoke, TX, and we usually just get chips and salsa, but he suggested we try it with table-side guacamole and that was a real eye-opener in terms of flavor and culinary experience.

How much did he influence the album? 

Mostly sonically — he has a signature sound on his rough mixes; if you listen to other local bands like Sealion, Joe Gorgeous, and Siberian Traps, you’ll know what I’m talking about, but it’s kind of “dusty compression,” and a lot of direct-to-the-board guitars.

What jokes and other themes did you get to explore and base the songs on? 

You know how everyone has at least one jackass/hot mess friend who has to wear an orthopedic boot because he or she got drunk and fell off a curb?  “Last Call for Milkshakes!” and “Yung Bullion” kinda deal with those lovable knuckleheads. “Pro Tools” is a critique of a certain Nationalism-stoking, willfully uninformed, poorly tailored, Fox-news-devouring television characterish, cartoonish James Bond Villain-esque, unlovable knucklehead who is always in the news these days. “Angelo No. 9” kinda bemoans what a headache being in love with someone can be, and its title references a piece of obsolete aroma technology that sort of a precursor to modern essential oils vaporizers. “By Degrees” is about anxiety, and who doesn’t like to laugh about that?

Any plans to hit the road? 

We’re just waiting on other bands’ management to give us the green light for opening slots. Cross your fingers! We could be the band you miss before you see a bigger band you love!

What else is happening next in Oil Boom’s world? 

We’re gonna continue to write and record, play shows, demolish cars, and try new things at Chili’s.

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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