Vancouver-born Theory of a Deadman’s four musicians are speckled throughout North America.
Singer/guitarist Tyler Connolly lives in Los Angeles, while guitarist/backing vocalist Dave Breen is in Montgomery, Alabama; bassist Dean Back is outside of Vancouver, British Columbia; and drummer/backing vocalist is in Las Vegas.
So, Back is anticipating a reunion with his Theory of a Deadman bandmates on the upcoming dates on the Rock Resurrection Tour with Skillet and Saint Asonia. The jaunt comes to Arizona Federal Theatre on Wednesday, March 22.
“Since COVID, we haven’t been out on an extended touring run,” Back says. “We did a quick little run of Australia and New Zealand with Halestorm. The Skillet/Saint Asonia tour is going to be a lot of fun. The four of us live in different cities around North America. Unless we’re on tour, we don’t spend a lot of time together. I’m excited to get back with the boys and join my other family.”
The band is pushing the next chapter of its career, the album “Dinosaur,” which releases Friday, March 17.
“We’re going to bring big production,” Back says. “It’s going to be a big rock show — so much fun.
“We’re going to have some new songs, some old songs. We’ve been at it for over 20 years. This is our eighth record. It’s getting harder and harder to pick a set list. Early on in the tour, the set list may change a little bit. By Phoenix, we should be all streamlined and ready to go.”
With “Dinosaur,” the title track, which opens the collection, packs a powerful punch musically and emotionally, with the lyrics, “Hey, kids, boys and girls, now we’ve really done it. It’s the end of the world. … Now, we’re going out, going out like the dinosaur.”
“Head in the Clouds” shows off Theory of a Deadman’s ability to flawlessly harmonize and write the quintessential rollicking pop song.
The breezy breakup song “Two of Us (Stuck)” takes the refrain of the Grover Washington Jr. and Bill Withers classic “Just the Two of Us” and twists it into trademark Theory of a Deadman aggression.
“‘Two of Us (Stuck)’ is a cool song,” Back says. “Tyler wrote it while everyone was in quarantine. You hear so many songs of couples not really surviving the pandemic and being quarantined together for so long. It starts off nice and romantic but turns a little darker toward the end.”
“Dinosaur” is Theory of a Deadman’s follow-up to 2020’s “Say Nothing.” The forthcoming record was produced by Martin Terefe, whose credits include Jason Mraz and Yungblud, and recorded in Sweden’s Atlantis Studios.
Terefe also turned the knobs for Theory of a Deadman’s 2017 album “Wake Up Call,” but that was recorded in London.
“‘Dinosaur’ came together really great and organically,” Back says. “It was a cool, new experience for us. We recorded the first half in Stockholm, Sweden, at the studio ABBA used to record at. They did some other rock records there. Ghost was just recording there.
“We were there for three weeks. We banged out all the drums, bass and guitars. It was cool to live in Stockholm for three weeks. My family is from Denmark, so I love being in Scandinavia.”
Working with Terefe is “incredible, super comfortable,” Back explains.
“Martin’s like a fifth member,” he adds. “He’s a crazy scientist. He hears all these things we don’t hear. He comes from more of a European musical background. He hears samples and mood stuff, synth sounds, etc. He’ll be playing a song and he’ll say, ‘I have an idea. Let’s add some keyboard and cool, moody sounds.’ That really bring the songs even more to life.”
Theory of a Deadman has sustained its popularity for 20 years. They founded the band while jamming together in basements throughout high school in their hometown of North Delta, British Columbia.
Founded in 1999, Theory of a Deadman was the first band signed to Chad Kroeger’s 604 Records in 2001. The following year, they released their self-titled record.
In addition to 2008’s double-platinum breakthrough album, “Scars & Souvenirs,” Theory of a Deadman has released the gold-certified “The Truth Is…” in 2011 and has scored a procession of hits.
When the bassist looks back on his two-decade career, he immediately thinks of the early days.
“It doesn’t seem like that long ago,” he says. “I think about all the records we’ve released and what we’ve done since. We’ve been at it for quite a while. I just love performing. I love seeing fans and feeling the energy of being in a live venue with music. It’s addictive. During the couple years of lockdown, it was something I really missed in my life. Being able to tour again and getting it back feels like home.”
Skillet and Theory of a Deadman w/Saint Asonia
WHEN: 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 22
WHERE: Arizona Financial Theatre, 400 W. Washington Street, Phoenix
COST: Tickets start at $39.50