AV Super Sunshine’s latest single “Crazy Love” has two distinct mixes, a rock and dance version respectively, and the imaginative way Sunshine recasts the tune in its latter form attests to his abiding musical creativity. The rock version is the shorter of the two mixes and has a strong focus on guitar and vocals above all else. His creative partnership with producer/musician/songwriter Michael Bradford continues with the new single and he makes his presence felt throughout both mixes, particularly in the dance cut. There are countless things recommending these mixes for listeners interested in great music, but one of its chief strengths for me is how the mixes illustrate AV Super Sunshine’s continuing ability to refurbish and revisit long standing formulas and subject matter with a fresh and individual perspective.

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The dance mix is heavy with electronic instrumentation, but it never overwhelms you. Michael Bradford’s aforementioned contributions to the dance version aren’t limited to his production talents, but there’s little question that AV Super Sunshine’s musical vision benefits in a big way from Bradford’s keen ear for separation and allowing a song’s individual parts the opportunity to breathe. His musical contributions, as they do elsewhere, help elevate an already superb song to a higher level.

Sunshine’s vocal cuts through the wealth of synthesizers and other electronic instruments making their presence felt during the song. It’s difficult to not feel engaged by the way Sunshine attacks with his vocals – it is never heavy handed, crackles with audible charisma, and never risks losing the listener’s attention. He commands it from the outset and generates the necessary velocity as a singer to match the intensity of the song’s musical arrangement.

The rock mix is, without surprise, much more guitar centric than the dance version and dispenses with its synths and other electronic touches. This version of the tune highlights Sunshine’s vocal much more than the dance mix and the harmony singing has a much cleaner approach. There are instrumental breaks built into this track as there are in the dance take on the tune, but AV Super Sunshine never intends these to be virtuosic moments in the piece. They reinforce the song.

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He applies light effects to the rock mix’s guitar playing, but these decisions are not gimmicks. They are stylistic affectations, this is true, but like the instrumental breaks, these stylistic additions to the track actually reinforce the song rather than sounding shallow and self-indulgent. They accentuate its modern feel, drawing the song further away from any possible cliché. The rock mix is shorter than its dance counterpart, not by a lot, but its comparative brevity implies a leaner focus than what we hear in the dance mix.

AV Super Sunshine scores again with this single. His unerring instincts for fusing the past and present together in a distinctive package with a personal touch separate him from many peers and contemporaries. It’s a quality that wins over virtually everyone who encounters his music and keeps them coming back for more. “Crazy Love” is another feather in his cap and he shows no signs of slowing down.

Garth Thomas