The Eastern Sea's wispy indie-pop songs seem like they're always on the verge of floating away in a stiff breeze, but listen a little closer and they're actually made of sterner stuff. Matt Hines, who started the Eastern Sea in Houston before relocating to Austin around the time of the band's 2009 debut EP, is one of those kids who probably listened to his dad's Paul Simon and Beach Boys albums as much as his own Bright Eyes and Shins MP3s, but the gossamer melodies he crafts out of his inner turmoil are hardly derivative. The Eastern Sea's debut album, last month's Plague, is certainly a more pleasant listen than the title and songs like "So Long Either Way" and "Central Cemetery" might imply, but throughout the course of its 12 songs, it's often hard to fight the urge to run up and give Hines a hug. Take your chance Friday, or see if he's feeling any better at The Eastern Sea's Austin City Limits Music Festival debut in October.
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