Ottawa’s own alternative electro-pop pair, Paragon Cause, kicked off the new year with their latest video release, “Making Up For Lost Time”, which comes off of their upcoming album Autopilot! set to be released in early 2022.
The band has once again joined forces with Danish songwriter and producer, Sune Rose Wagner. Wagner is best known for being half of the rock duo—The Raveonettes.
“Most of the songs we’ve done with [Wagner] follow a similar process, it’s very natural,” singer Michelle Opthof says.
“This song was recorded last January, so this is the third time [we’ve worked with him],” bassist Jay Bonaparte says. “We’ve just gotten to know each other a lot better and it’s easier for us to give feedback to each other and to kind of be critical of what we were doing.”
The three worked together to create a powerful track with themes of loss, self-growth, and the act of moving on to better things.
The majority of the tracks on the upcoming album, Autopilot!, are co-written. Some with Wagner, others with prominent members of alternative rock bands from the ’90s like Eric Avery—songwriter and bassist for Jane’s Addiction—and English producer Liam Howe, who brought together Sneaker Pimps in 1996. Howe has since worked closely with popular artists like Adele, FKA Twigs, and Lana Del Rey, to name a few.
The music video opens with dark contrasting colours over a winter scene. Throughout the video, past and present versions of Opthof are shown sending messages to one another via text messaging. This represents the journey of growth and moving forward as the past and present communicate with each other, coming to a mutual understanding of identity.
Before he produced and edited his band’s new music video, Bonaparte turned to his creative side to come up with the concept for the video.
“I think very visually, even with music,” he says.
While writing the lyrics, he is brought back to a classic drama mystery Hungarian film, Werckmeister Harmonies, where a distinct scene in the film sticks with him. In the opening scene, a man asks the bartender to hold off on closing the bar so that the protagonist, János Valuska, can “show [them] something”.
“It’s very surreal, [Valuska] gets the patrons of the bar to act like the solar system,” he says. “It’s really strange but there’s this idea of sorrow and isolation with the way the scene develops. After the bar scene, [Valuska] is walking down a path towards the camera but as he gets closer the camera pulls away and I loved that idea.”
This technique is seen in the music video while Opthof walks down a snowy path as she sings the chorus: “Making up for lost time / Making up for lost time / Making up for lost time.”
As she’s walking and the camera is pulling away, there are layered shots of children running and playing with sparklers. This mutes the underlying scene and depicts the thoughts in someone’s mind who is trying to forgive the past while the future is escaping them.
Be sure to dive into their new music video below and watch for their new single “Think I’m Going Crazy Over You” coming out in April 2021.
To see more music videos, live recordings, and updates from Paragon Cause, visit their Youtube channel, or check out Autopilot! on Bandcamp.