Nickelback’s Guitarist Says Bands That Don’t Fully Commit to Metal “Get Tore Up” By Protective Metalheads


If there’s one thing you can say about us metalheads, it’s that we’re passionate about our music. If you’re a pretender or you don’t fully embrace what it takes to be a metal band — whatever that means — then you’re likely seen as just another poser trying to get radio play and cash in on the legacies of the bands we already know and love. If you don’t worship at the altar of whatever metal gods we’re following at the time, then you’re not worth our time.

At least that’s what Nickelback Guitarist Ryan Peake believes about us as metal fans whenever we interact with a rock band that “dip your toe” into metal but don’t fully commit. Speaking during a recent interview with Tom Power, host of “Q” on Canada’s CBC Radio One, (as transcribed by Blabbermouth) Peake admitted he understood where that sentiment came from since he too came up in the metal scene.

“Speaking as a metal listener…. I grew up listening to metal… I grew up initially with pop, but then, when I started playing guitar, it was metal — Anthrax and Testament… I loved metal growing up… But what I just find interesting — and this is more of an observation — is if you say [about a Nickelback song], ‘Okay, this sounds a bit metal,’ I can just hear all the metalheads just [getting all worked up about it]: ‘Are you kidding me? Are you kidding me?’ Because I come from that initially, and I understand there’s some kind of protective nature in the metal audience.

“And it’s weird, because if you play a rock song — like a really heavy rock song — to an audience that likes the more melodic stuff, they’re kind of taken aback, maybe not expecting it, but they’ll still — live especially — they’ll get it and they’ll be accepting, or they’ll just go, ‘Oh. Maybe not for me.’ Metalheads? They’ll be just, like, ‘They’re not metal,’ and they’ll just drag you through the mud for even suggesting that.

“It’s really interesting. They’re really protective of their genre. And if you dip your toe in there without fully being metal, you’re just gonna get tore up.”

Nickelback recently got a taste of this earlier this year when they released a teaser for the song “San Quentin” that at the time sounded to us a lot like a metalcore song. It was the first peak at their album Get Rollin’ and while that style only lasted as long as that song’s intro, it was enough to get metalheads flooding the comments sections. Nevermind the fact that Peake and the Kroeger brothers have long been documented as heavy metal fans, even going so far as to say they’d love to cover Slayer, Testament, or Messuggah sometime. They’re the “How You Remind Me” guys, that’s it. No flexibility. No change.

You can check out the rest of the interview below.

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