Nickelback's Chad Kroeger Brings Theory Of A Deadman To Life

Singer signs band, produces its record, scores group spot on 'Spider-Man' album.

Many fans credit Nickelback's Chad Kroeger and his songs with helping them

get through tough times. Tyler Connolly, frontman of Theory of a Deadman,

has Kroeger to thank for just about everything.

Before Nickelback were rock stars, Connolly was a struggling musician

without a band, manager or record deal and with only a pipe dream of ever

being recognized outside his hometown of Vancouver, Canada. Then one night

at a party Connolly handed a demo tape to Kroeger, which led to an

enthusiastic call from the burgeoning musician, who wanted to produce


Kroeger's contribution didn't end there. When Alice in Chains guitarist

Jerry Cantrell failed to show at a scheduled studio session for the "Hero"

song Kroeger wrote for the "Spider-Man" soundtrack, the Nickelback maestro

called Connolly, who played a guitar solo for the track and also appeared in

the video shoot the next day. And when Kroeger decided to launch his own

label, 604 Records, he recruited Theory of a Deadman as his first signing

and produced their self-titled debut record, due August 20.

The celebrity promotion has paid off. Kroeger helped get Theory of a

Deadman's "Invisible Man" on "Spider-Man," and the group's debut single,

"Nothing Could Come Between Us," is starting to heat up at radio.

"We have no one to thank except Chad for everything that's happened,"

Connolly said. "He helped me a lot with my songwriting, and if it wasn't for

Chad asking me to do the 'Hero' video, we wouldn't be at the level we're at.

It definitely gave us a little boost."

"Nothing Could Come Between Us," a melody-rich slab of hard rock in the vein

of Connolly's heroes, is about a relationship that drags on for far too


"This guy's dating a chick and he's just sick of her," Connolly explained.

"He wants to get the hell out of the relationship and she doesn't. She just

sort of hangs on, and it becomes a train wreck because he's a little too

scared to admit it should end and too frightened to just tell her off."

Three weeks ago, Theory of a Deadman shot a video for the track in Vancouver

with Glen Bennett, who directed Drowning Pool's "Bodies" and Sevendust's


"It shows me jamming and rocking out at a crossroads," Connolly said.

"There's a rig driver and a girl in a Camaro. And we've got all these stacks

of speaker cabinets set up in the road. And during the solo, they just crash

through all our gear while we're playing right there in the road."

Connolly emphasized that at no time were Theory of a Deadman in danger of

being rendered dead men by the speeding vehicle.

"We weren't really standing in the middle of the road when they crashed," he

said. "They used computers to make it look like we're standing there. I've

seen a couple rough cuts, and Glen Bennett is a big special-effects whiz, so

he's gonna make us all really awesome."

While the video might be heavy on effects, it's pretty light on plot. Aside

from the girl in the Camaro, there's little to reflect the turbulent subject

matter of the song. Connolly didn't write the treatment, but he said the

band intentionally avoided a story line.

"Our manager told me I didn't want to have a video where the story is too

involved, 'cause a lot of people are gonna listen to the song and interpret

it their own way," he said. "And if you have a video where there's too much

of a story line, it's gonna change people's look on the song."