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Dorothea paas

Dorothea Paas embraces ambiguity on the vivid folk of “Anything Can’t Happen”

02 March 2021, 15:15 | Written by Jay Singh

Canadian songwriter Dorothea Paas has released “Anything Can’t Happen”, the stirring lead single and title track of her long-awaited debut album.

“Anything Can’t Happen” is bold and brimming with allure - it's the perfect introduction to Dorothea Paas' first full-length. Its gently blossoming vocals are suspended above resounding guitars and flickers of resplendent synths, making for a transformative and captivating track.

Paas takes inspiration from an eclectic pool of influences - from Joni Mitchell to Sonic Youth to Stevie Wonder - which all meld together on this immediately classic-sounding offering. In her conversational lyricism, Paas conveys an understanding of both her own shortcomings and the subject of the song’s internal struggles. As she repeats the closing refrain of "Anything can happen / At any time”, there’s an eventual sense of release; an exhale of pent-up anxiety about the uncharted territory of the future.

“These uncertainties remain in tension,” Paas explains, “so that you can decide what you want the song to mean based on how you’re feeling. I hope that this song facilitates some cathartic surrender to the fact that there is so much we can’t control or resolve. There is not only fear but also possibly hope in the idea that we don’t know what is coming.”

Speaking on the single’s accompanying music video, shot at Niagara Falls and the nearby Clifton Hill tourist promenade, Paas shared: “A trip to Niagara Falls offers opportunities for self-exploration and self-obscurity. It feels very human to build something like Clifton Hills so as to exert some kind of control over the sublime. If the Falls render us insignificant or terrify us, we can remake them into a postcard or a keychain, and take them home.

"I can connect the video to my interpretation of the lyrics; maybe you will see it the same way as me, or maybe totally differently. I think that’s what is exciting about this open-ended mode of filming.”

"Anything Can't Happen" is out now and the album of the same name is due 7 May via Telephone Explosion Records. Find Dorothea Paas on Instagram.
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