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Metal/Prog Metal CD Reviews

Theory of a Deadman

Scars and Souvenirs

Review by Peter Lizano

As Theory of a Deadman, or TOAD, as their fans call them, begin to hit the road this spring and summer, I thought I would take the opportunity to review their last album, Scars & Souvenirs. With eight singles being released from this album, they have been certified Gold in the USA.  Coming from Canada, they have that Nickleback sound down pat. I guess having Chad Kroeger signing the band to his label has some influence. This will not be remembered as one of the best albums of the year, but it’s a nice CD to just pop in as you’re working around the house or taking a road trip.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2011  Volume 2 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
So Happy (featuring Brent Smith)

Hearing this song, most people would not guess Brent Smith from Shinedown was on it.  This is a very catchy song about a strained relationship.  It has nice guitar licks toward the end, along with a great rock/pop feel.

By the Way (featuring Chris Daughtry and Robin Diaz)
Another song with guest vocals - you can tell it’s Daughtry singing with Tyler Connolly. In fact, he’s more recognizable than Brent Smith was on “So Happy.”  This was their sixth single off the album.  The number is about leaving a relationship without saying anything to the other person.
Got it Made
This is one of the better cuts on the album.  It’s well produced, polished and could sound at home on a Nickleback album.   As much as Nickleback is hated, they know how to produce hits.
Not Meant to Be
The fifth single released, this was also on the soundtrack for Transformer’s: Revenge of the Fallen.  It was co-written by former American Idol judge,Kara DioGuardi.  It’s another song about a broken relationship. That seems to be the underlying theme to the album.
Crutch
This is one of those tunes that can grow on you over time.   It has some solid guitar work, along with megaphone vocal singing throughout.
All or Nothing
The third single released, this was written about Connolly’s wife Christine Danielle Connolly, who also helped co-write several songs on this album.  This number has a definite country rock feel to it. It’s not my favorite, but I can see why it performed well as a single.
Heaven (Little by Little)
This is very much a fluff song.  It’s another ballad, but for me, it fails big time and it’s hard not to press “fast forward.”
Bad Girlfriend
This is where, for me, the album picks up.  It is one of their biggest hits.  It is certainly a guilty pleasure and a great song. Anytime you press “play,” it will have you rocking.  This was the second single off the album.
Hate my Life
This is one of the best tracks of the set.  It opens up with an acoustic guitar and Connolly  singing about how much he hates his life.  Any blue collar individual can relate to this in many ways.  It then kicks into a honky-tonk/rockabilly song.
Little Smirk
This opens up with church organs before kicking into a hard-charged rock song about being cheating on and taking revenge.
End of the Summer
Here we get a ballad about summer love ending.  It is a bit on the cheesy side.
Wait for Me
This is the seventh single of the album and another ballad.  Connolly wrote this about missing his wife while on the road.  This is a better than average ballad and a well produced song.
Sacrifice
The last track of the album ends the festivities in a slow tempo rock song.  It has some nice guitar work by Tyler Connolly and Dave Brenner. As with the whole set, it is well produced and has well written lyrics. 
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