Ole Gunnar Gundersen appears to be both the brain and muscle behind Subshine. According to Gunnar’s own bio: “This is electronic pop, this is longing with a sense of hope. This is walking for hours in the stunning Norwegian landscape.” For one, we would love to check out the Norwegian landscape for ourselves once it feels safer to travel again. Ole Gunnar does seem to be dishing out the hooks on his latest single, “Florence.” It harks back to the heady days of new-wave and synthpop, bringing to mind classic groups like the Pet Shop Boys, The Cure, Depeche Mode, and Human League.
The brilliant aspect of Subshine’s production is how things sound so organic, all whilst using loops, synths, and electronics. This has much to do with Gunnar’s choice of sounds; the drums sound acoustic-like, adding much warmth to the tune along with the acoustic guitar loops. There’s also an epic electric lead providing a melodic sensibility to the arrangement and synth pads that give the song that anthemic quality you hear so much on M83 records. The vocals are subdued, blending into the overall texture seamlessly. There is no one element that stands out or is overbearing. On “Florence,” Subshine have achieved something like a tapestry of sound, which washes over you like the beauty of a Norwegian landscape.
With lyrics like “I still see it in your eyes I know your love is still mine you give it away you set it free but it always comes back to me,” Gunnar, or at least the narrator in “Florence,” comes off as a pretty cocksure dude. Although, the tone of the music indicates a sadder reality. Perhaps, this is our protagonist’s own way of facing up to the fact that he hasn’t quite moved on from his past.
The track brilliantly swells, building up to the ecstatic sounding chorus and comes back down in the verses, with the sensibly-timed deployment of instruments. This Ole Gunnar will definitely be something to watch out for, as far as fans of indie synth-pop are concerned!