Theory of a Deadman

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About Theory of a Deadman

When Nickelback’s Chad Kroeger parlayed his rock stardom into the creation of 604 Records, the first band signed were fellow Canadians Theory of a Deadman. Their 2002 debut, co-produced by Kroeger, defined the band’s style. Following Nickelback’s lead, Theory of a Deadman unload riff rockers that cut the modern angst of post-grunge and alt-metal with an outlaw attitude inspired by classic Southern rock. Guiding their sound is lead singer and primary songwriter Tyler Connolly, who possesses a talent for transforming working-class disaffection into surly anthems (“Hate My Life,” “Bad Girlfriend”) that are perfect to blast just as Friday night becomes Saturday morning. By the mid 2010s, Theory of a Deadman were established stars, yet Connolly knew the band needed to evolve, perhaps even make themselves over, in order to keep pace with changing tastes in rock. So Theory (as they rebranded themselves in 2017) teamed up with Swedish pop producer Martin Terefe (KT Tunstall, Christina Aguilera) for Wake Up Call. The record, reflecting Connolly’s growing interest in piano melodies and topical issues, is anchored by the hit single “Rx (Medicate),” a bold commentary on the opioid epidemic that cleverly marries country twang to a slowly rolling hip-hop beat. The band’s metamorphosis intensified on 2020’s Say Nothing, on which Connolly’s blue-collar tales of poverty, domestic violence, and racism come wrapped not in crushing guitar riffs but rather the synth textures of ’80s rock and electro-pop.

Delta, British Columbia, Canada

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