Alec Scott: Fables of Freedom
Take one look at the photo of fresh-faced teenager Alec Scott on the cover of his recent EP and you know he wasn't being ironic when he named the recording Fables of Freedom. The five Fables contained on the disc find the 17-year-old Baltimorean using a folk-tinged pop sound (file between Tracy Chapman and Dionne Farris) to back his earnest lyrics warning against social complacency ("3 Monkeys"), pining for love ("Breathe," "All That You Are"), and expressing spiritual angst ("Boy Oblivion," "Freedom Song"). The lyrics themselves are several cuts above the sort of spiral-notebook poetry you might expect from a sensitive teenage bard, though that fresh-faced photo and EP title should give you an idea of the sort of earnestness you can expect.
While Scott's songwriting still has some growing to do, Fables introduces him as a fully formed, radio-ready pop prodigy. He has a light, supple voice with a broad, effortless range; more important, his singing boasts a show-biz vet's character and confidence. (Scott's résumé includes studies at the Baltimore School for the Arts, Peabody Prep, and Boston's Berklee College of Music; he has appeared in the musical Galileo at Center Stage.) John Grant (of disappear fear/Sonia fame) and Scott's spare production and musicianship helps whatever Scott sings sound polished. Scott may not be a major artist yet, but this recording gives evidence of a major hometown talent.