Deryck Whibley Reveals The Unexpected Catalyst For Sum 41's Latest Album

By Katrina Nattress

March 25, 2022

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Deryck Whibley wasn't planning to write a double album for Sum 41 — in fact, he wasn't planning on writing music at all — but his experience as a new dad paired with an album's 20th anniversary and the ongoing pandemic made songs pour out of him, resulting in Heaven and Hell.

During an interview with Rolling Stone, the Sum 41 frontman revealed the unexpected catalyst for new music: a punk rock playlist he curated to entertain his infant daughter. Whibley filled the playlist “with all of the punk-rock stuff I listened to when I was in high school that I hadn’t listened to in years,” he said. “[Listening to this music] kickstarted me into writing again.”

And then it was time to celebrate the anniversary of All Killer, No Filler, and when the label asked if he had any leftover songs for a possible reissue Whibley said no but he could write some in the same style. “Once I had about four or five songs, I was like, ‘You know what? I like all these. I’m not giving these to anybody,’” he admitted.

These songs comprise the album's first side, Heaven. “Some weird nostalgia kicked in because of the pandemic. A lot of other people were retreating to things that made them feel good in the past," Whibley explained. "It all made sense to me why pop-punk is coming back: it’s feel-good music. There’s something that’s happy about it. Something young and innocent and free.”

The second side, Hell, showcases the band's darker, heavier side. “Some of the metal stuff comes with a lot of anger for people who have stolen from me and hurt me in the past,” Whibley divulged. “I can deal with stress and the issues that go on in life probably because I write about it and I get it all out.”

Heaven and Hell doesn't have a release date yet; however, Sum 41 is hitting the road with Simple Plan for The Blame Canada Tour next month. See a full list of tour dates here.

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