Though Nickelback spent the better part of two decades being the butt of many a metalhead’s joke, it seems the Canadian rockers’ standing in the heavy music community has improved drastically in recent times. Now, beloved prog-metal genius Devin Townsend has heaped praise on Nickelback frontman Chad Kroeger, even going as far as to suggest that The Chad is “so much more of a metalhead” than Devin himself is.
Speaking to Ultimate Guitar, Devin lifted the lid on his recent collaboration with Kroeger, who appeared on the former’s recent album, Lightwork.
“Chad’s brilliant,” gushes the former Strapping Young Lad frontman. “Chad is a phenomenally intelligent human being. But he’s a rockstar, too, on levels that you and I will never participate in. And so there’s gonna be a disconnect just based on that. You only have a few things in common, and then, after a while you run out of things to talk about.
“I think it was flattering for me at first, too. But again, guy’s got a very complex life, and I can’t understand a lot of it. How could I? It’s not within the realm of my world. But I think he’s exceptionally talented. I think he’s phenomenally intelligent.”
Townsend then goes on to deduct himself some metal points before handing them directly to Kroeger, noting: “Even if I respect and care for people, after a certain amount of time, again, I have to tap out. I’m like, ‘Dude, I can’t hang with this.’ I’m in bed by nine, usually. I don’t want to listen to Pantera at four in the morning, you know?
“And that’s not a character flaw at all, it’s just a different frequency that folks like that exist on,” he continues. “I’m not like that. But sometimes it takes experiences with folks like that to know that. Maybe you think you can hang, and then you get there.
“And I mean, with Chad, I remember being at his house a couple times, and just being, ‘Wow, this is so intense, man.’ He had a stage set up, and it’s metal all night. And I’m thinking like, ‘Man, you are so much more of a metalhead than I am.’ But I do care for him. And I think he’s brilliant.”
Nickelback recently released new studio album Get Rollin’, their first for five years.