South Coast singer/songwriter DD Allen returns to the fold this month with a new single “Paper Masks”, that gives the last 18 months worth of everyday struggles a sense of realism. The lyrics capture the essence of events that impacted society deeply throughout the global pandemic, DD focuses energy and attention on a story that cuts to the core. Watching the news as the cases rose and the people endured successive UK lockdowns; DD Allen used his potent storytelling to craft another hook-laden, powerful indie pop/rock track. From early incarnations, the song took creative twists and turns, as Allen battled to record through the successive restrictions. ‘Paper Masks’ was steered in the right direction with production by Dave Griffiths and Barny Barnicott (Sam Fender, Kasabian) took control of the mix to define the track’s final direction.

DD Allen

DD explains “2020 and 2021 divided opinions, stoked a disconnect across generations and brought racial tensions to a peak. But at the end of the day, we’re all in this together. I wanted Paper Masks to reflect the turmoil. And carry a message that whoever we are; whatever we do, if we pass the buck on responsibility then karma wins the sweepstakes.”

Through adversity, you will find the struggles that people endure make them stronger and able to cope better than they ever expected. When liberty was taken away, we all drew our attention to closer matters that we previously thought trivial. DD here has created something that marks a particular moment in time and openly describes what misfortunes the entire human race had to endure. Opening with the powerful line “dreams on which our lives depend, stubbed out like a ciggy end”; the tune rouses with its eighties-inspired, synth-led guitar attack and DD’s unique vocals. Its crowning glory is its powerful closing guitar solo, showcasing what a special talent this musician is.


Words by David Chinery (Chinners).

DD Allen