Young Pilot’s debut album, Old Love, may have been a long time coming, if you take into account the fact that Scott Carere first started writing his own music at the age of 12. Maybe that’s why the image of a boy dressed up as a pilot stuck with him, and inspired his stage name—capturing childhood dreams that are taking off.
Carere grew up playing with friend Ben Cottrill—coming in second place to him when the two competed for the 2014 Wellesley Idol. The friendship continues, and Cottrill chimes in on tracks “Detroit,” “Heart of a Man,” and “Oh My Brother,” even if the two are no longer stage mates. Carere now splits his time between his Young Pilot project, joined on tracks by Conor McCartney and Ethan Meyers, and performing with the Caraways, whose members Hannah Boehm and Mariah Martin feature on “A Simpleton’s Creed.”
Recorded in Carere’s basement, where he’s been playing for years, Old Love is a thoughtful album driven by genuine passion and sincerity. Titular “Old Love” opens by saying goodbye as an easy percussion lightens the vibe and the folky number rocks along, dancing into twanging “Good Morning June!”
“Rocket Man” is the first of Carere’s slower tracks, setting up the next few songs and showing deft, gentle touch that lulls the listener in. “A Simpleton’s Creed” breaks it up midway through the album, adding a hint of bluegrass and making the most of the guest vocals as they pepper the jaunty track.
The latter half settles back into Carere’s croon, as “Oh Brother” begs for salvation and “The Heart of a Man” looks at the legacies we can leave behind. “I apologize, I’m not my best self/But I know I have made it this far/Maybe I’ll be a big star/What good is that if you’re not okay?” he sings on “Are You Listening?”
It’s a track that seems to capture all of Carere’s hopes and fears as he launches his debut—or, much like that vision of the boy that inspired his name, finally takes to the skies to fly.
Top Tracks: “A Simpleton’s Creed”; “Oh Brother”
Rating: Proud Hoot (Really Good)