Let me open with this, Noah Gundersen’s new EP, Family, is a Masters’ course in songwriting and he’s only in his early 20s, so there’s still time to grow and groom his AMAZING talent and this gives me hope that brilliant songwriting will live on.
On Family, Gundersen pays homage to the people who have shaped his life in perfect and compelling songs full of emotion. Never have I actually felt an aching sense of loneliness and sadness until I listened to “Nashville” for the first time. It’s a song that has been haunting me for a few days. His writing is not that of a young man in his 20s, but that of a man who has lived decades. Gundersen is an old soul and it shows in songs like “San Antonio Fading” and “Garden”. And, since this is an EP focused on family, it’s only fitting that his sister, Abby, plays violin and sings vocal harmonies. Her beautiful string accompaniments and soft voice is a gorgeous touch to this stunning collection of songs.
Containing a bookend of outstanding songs, the opening track, “David,” has an urgent and somewhat menacing sound to represent the struggles in his life. Inspired by the story of David and Goliath in the Old Testament, Noah wants to conquer his giants and slay his demons. “David”, Noah says, “is about who I want to be, while realizing who I am. I want to be less like my Father and more like my Dad.” The closer, “Family,” was featured on Sons of Anarchy, and became the most downloaded track on iTunes right after the episode aired. A beautifully painful song that embodies the meaning of the Family EP. “Family comes in many forms,” says Noah. “It lives with us, for better and worse. It shapes us. That’s what this album is about.” Well said and well sung, Noah.