The Real Reason All Nickelback Songs Sound The Same

Grammy-nominated (and perpetually chastised) rock band Nickelback have received their fair share of criticism over the years -– and then some. From being dubbed one of the worst bands of the 1990s (per Rolling Stone readers) to "the most hated band in the music industry", there's no doubt that the Canadian rockers have a handful of dissenters.

"From Rolling Stone right on down to the rock magazine's parrots in student newspapers and beyond, those writing critically about Nickelback complain that the music is derivative, repetitive, and predictable," wrote Victor Barac, a culture anthropologist at the University of Toronto, in Canada's The Mark News.

But while countless naysayers of the post-grunge four-piece will rip apart their music, others will point out a less-frequented topic of debate in the Nickelback sphere: the fact that many of their songs sound almost exactly the same.

'It's the same thing over and over', says one critic

Although similarities between artists' own songs have been mainstays in music circles for ages, it was in 2003 when Nickelback released their guitar-heavy "Someday" that fans began to pay closer attention to the presumed "self-plagiarism." In fact, As reported by NPR, then-college student Mikey Smith pointed out to WBUR in Boston that "Someday" sounded eerily too familiar to one of the band's previous hits, 2001's "How You Remind Me".

"I heard them both on the radio, and I kinda noticed that you can hum the melody of the other one over this one and I wonder why that is. So I tried to put them together, one on the left speaker, one on the right speaker. And it was actually ridiculous how similar they were." For all intents and purposes, the audiophile calls the two "exactly the same song".

Yet, in a press conference with the Cleveland Free Times, bassist Mike Kroeger defended the legitimacy of the two tunes. As reported by Ultimate Guitar:

"I think that's remarkable for someone to notice that there is a hit quality," Kroeger said. "If all hits sound the same, then sorry. When you are a band that has a distinct style such as us or AC/DC, that happens. When you have a distinct style, you run the risk of sounding similar."

To Smith, who said that he and his girlfriend were previous fans of the band, the distinct similarities are grounds for fraud. "It's ripping people off, some of them may not even realize it ... I mean, it's the same thing over and over."