Introduction (Short Paragon Cause Bio)

 

Ottawa / Gatineau band Paragon are a musical duo who take an eclectic approach to their music influences, fusing disparate sounds including hip-hop, jazz, 80's synthesizers and 50's guitars to deliver their personal brand of atmospheric rock-tinged electronica. The duo’s history is one of mystery, sadness, hope and inspiration.


Medium Bio (A Little More Info on Paragon Cause)

Paragon Cause Duo.jpg

Vocals, Keyboard, Synth / Michelle VonKheul
Guitar, Bass, Drums / Jay Opthof

Ottawa / Gatineau band Paragon Cause have transcended national and genre boundaries with a set of stunning releases. The songwriting, production and musical duo take an eclectic approach to their music influences, fusing disparate sounds including hip-hop, jazz piano, 80's synthesizers and 50's guitars to deliver their personal brand of atmospheric rock-tinged electronica. The duo’s history is one of mystery, sadness, hope and inspiration.

Lead singer/songwritter Michelle had her creativity and talent trapped for years under a haze of emotional and physical control, until she was able to see the light and escape into a world of art, music and culture. Her female power, confidence and talent allow her to be an inspiration and role model for other women who need to escape and become who they are.

Guitarist and songwriter Jay provides a perfect counterpoint to Michelles’s influences: a bit more rock in the mix, urban percussive rhythms, shimmering 50s melodrama and gothic undertones that invoke comparisons with Ry Cooder and Lana Del Rey’s more reflective moments. After pursuing a career in medicine, his love, commitment and dedication to the world of the arts eventually took over and in an epiphany, he realize that he was in a haze of normality and his true talent and passion was as a songwriter and artist. He traded his scalpel blades for 11 gauge strings on a Fender Jazzmaster and so began his return to music.

The various strands are all drawn together in a production style that serves up arrangements that are dense, sometimes dark, instinctually expansive but always open to making an emotional connection with the listener. They lean into the darkness, exploring every corner of a darkened room discovering new shades of black and color with the hues of oblivion and vast emptiness. They embrace complicated topics and find comfort in them.


The Extended Cut (Long Paragon Cause Bio)

Paragon Cause Live 2.jpg

Ottawa / Gatineau band Paragon Cause have transcended national and genre boundaries with a set of stunning releases. The songwriting, production and musical duo take an eclectic approach to their music influences, fusing disparate sounds including hip-hop, jazz piano, 80's synthesizers and 50's guitars to deliver their personal brand of atmospheric rock-tinged electronica.

Singer Michelle, from southern Ontario, Canada is a trained jazz singer however her voice defies placing in any one genre as it effortlessly captures qualities both modern and timeless. Her history is one of mystery, sadness, hope and inspiration. She grew up and was raised in a small evangelical religious community that often stereotyped women and female roles. Her creativity and talent remained trapped for years under a haze of emotional and physical control, until she was able to see the light and escape into a world of art, music and culture. Her female power, confidence and talent allow her to be an inspiration and role model for other women who need to escape and become who they are. The control that took over her life was released and her incredible talent is now available to share.

Paragon Cause Live.jpg

Subtle colours abound: from achingly heartfelt blues to the emotive rock tones of fellow Canadian Ann Wilson of Heart, whispers of Beth Gibbons and Eva Cassidy all combine in a voice that is as magical as it is mystical. The vocalist is also the main lyricist, she uses her considerable creative prowess to discuss topics that are often thought-provoking, encouraging the listener to embrace the deeper meaning and emotion in both the lyrics and also their own lives. Musically, she cites artists such as Mamma Cass, The Beatles and Beethoven as influences, lending the band’s music that classic, familiar aspect of their overall duality.

Fellow band member and co-producer Jay, is originally from Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. He absorbed by osmosis his home’s natural Celtic musical roots. As he grew older, he explored the wider musical world and added influences such as Tribe Called Quest, Digible Planets, as well as his love for the more brooding sounds of The Cure, Janes Addiction and The Raveonettes to his musical palette. Although he was a member of a number of many successful Halifax bands, he eventually left music and pursued a career in science and eventually surgery. His love, commitment and dedication to the world of the medical arts eventually took over and in an Epiphany, he realize that he was in a haze of normality and his true talent and passion was as a songwriter and artist. He traded his scalpel blades for 11 gauge strings on a Fender Jazzmaster and so began his return to music.

The result is a perfect counterpoint to Michelles’s influences: a bit more rock in the mix, urban percussive rhythms, shimmering 50s melodrama and gothic undertones that invoke comparisons with Ry Cooder and Lana Del Rey’s more reflective moments.

The various strands are all drawn together in a production style that serves up arrangements that are dense, sometimes dark, instinctually expansive but always open to making an emotional connection with the listener. They lean into the darkness, exploring every corner of a darkened room discovering new shades of black and color with the hues of oblivion and vast emptiness. They embrace complicated topics and find comfort in them.

Their meeting almost never happened. But in todays media and online world, it was all meant to be.

You’ll not have heard many bands that sound like Paragon Cause.

Individualistic, with well-crafted songs, enriched with emotionally literate lyrics and a cinematic musical style that complements the work of directors like Wim Wenders, the band intoxicate and delight with equal measure.

The duo is know for their penchant to lean into the darkness, exploring every corner of a darkened room. They somehow discover new shades of black and color with the hues of oblivion and vast emptiness. They take these daunting concepts and make them comforting and relaxing. They call to embrace complicated topics and find comfort in them.

 

Paragon Cause Sounds Like….

We have heard our music described as sounding like everyone below, but we just think we sound like us….its rare that people can place our music

  • Portishead

  • Massive Attack

  • Everything But The Girl

  • The Raveonettes and Sune Rose Wagner

  • Lana Del Ray

  • Nine Inch Nails

  • Scary Folk Music

  • Fleetwood Mac - Peter Green, Danny Kirwan and Modern

  • Nancy Sinatra

  • David Lynch

  • Bananarama

  • The Muppets

  • BBou Butterfly