Sky Sailing, "An Airplane Carried Me to Bed"

3.5

Adam Young, the mastermind behind synth-pop act Owl City's 2009 breakthrough, "Ocean Eyes," returns in stripped-down acoustic form on new musical project Sky Sailing. Instead of the lighthearted references to fireflies and manta rays heard on "Ocean Eyes," Sky Sailing's debut, "An Airplane Carried Me to Bed," reveals Young's more vulnerable side - the song "Brielle" touches on lost love and the appropriately titled "I Live Alone" deals with loneliness. Many of these melancholy tunes are dominated by slow-strumming acoustic guitar, but the pace picks up on the catchy standout track "Tennis Elbow." And on the folk-flavored cut "Steady As She Goes," Young lyrically tackles the exhilaration of chasing a dream. Straying from the electronic-laced whimsical themes of Owl City, Young takes a more simple, honest approach to song-writing with Sky Sailing, resulting in a more lyrically grounded effort.