Theory of a Deadman — stone-cold rock ‘n’ roll

Jimmy Fontaine

Theory of a Deadman will perform Saturday, Oct. 19, in Harrah’s Lake Tahoe.
Photo by Jimmy Fontaine

A magical mystery tour through the Beatles’ studio inspired members of the band Theory of a Deadman before six weeks of recording sessions.

Theory of a Deadman, aka TOAD, will release it seventh album, “Say Nothing,” on Jan. 31. It was recorded at producer Martin Terefe Kensaltown’s studio in London. But first there was a private tour of Abbey Road Studios, which still houses some of the equipment used by the Beatles.

“It reinvigorated us to get back in the studio,” said bass player Dean Back. “We could feel the magic in the walls and tried to recreate some of it when it was time for us to record.”

The Beatles were called the Fab Four. TOAD could be called the Frozen Four because the members are from Canada. Founding members Back, lead singer/guitarist Tyler Connolly and guitarist Dave Brenner are from North Delta, just outside of Vancouver. Drummer Joey Dandeneau, who joined 10 years ago, is from Winnipeg.

Back laughed at being categorized as a post-grunge band. “Every band since 1996 is post-grunge,” he said. “At the heart of it all, we are definitely a rock and roll band.”

Formed in 2001, Theory of a Deadman broke out in 2008 when it released its third album, “Scars & Souvenirs,” which spawned eight singles. The 2017 album “Wake Up Call” includes TOAD’s most popular single, “Rx (Medicate),” which is about opiate addiction.

The success of “Rx (Medicate)” fueled the creativity in songwriter Connolly, who sings about social issues on the upcoming album. The first single was released Sept. 25, “History of Violence” and it addresses domestic abuse.

“It gave us foot in the door to give Tyler the courage to take on more topics that people are a little bit afraid to talk about,” Back said. “Talking about these things and acknowledging that they’re here and real is a great first step. So on this record we talk about stuff like domestic abuse and racism and such. We hope to spread the message to be a good neighbor and love your fellow human beings.”

Theory of a Deadman plays Saturday, Oct. 19, in Harrah’s Lake Tahoe’s South Shore Room. The general admission show starts at 7:30 p.m. Concertgoers must be 21. Tickets are $39.50, plus entertainment fees.

“It’s going to be a great night,” Back said. “We have a lot of energy. We get a lot of fans participation and even people who might not be that familiar with us might hear familiar songs that you didn’t know we did.”

— Tim Parsons

About Tim Parsons

Tim Parsons is the editor of Tahoe Onstage who first moved to Lake Tahoe in 1992. Before starting Tahoe Onstage in 2013, he worked for 29 years at newspapers, including the Tahoe Daily Tribune, Eureka Times-Standard and Contra Costa Times. He was the recipient of the 2011 Keeping the Blues Alive award for Journalism.

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