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Graham Wilkinson, the Eastern Sea's First Christmas

Sat., Dec. 8, 2012, 9pm

The Parish
214 E. Sixth, 512/473-8381

http://www.theparishaustin.com

The water’s been choppy for the Eastern Sea this year.

The Austin eightpiece finally birthed its seemingly cursed sophomore album, Plague, this summer, and, after a cathartic home base celebration that sold out the inside room at Stubb’s, the group took off on a whirlwind national tour.

As 2012 winds down with spiked eggnog and warm December breezes, the Eastern Sea fires off a new full-length, First Christmas. Talk about getting in the spirit.

“The year was tough, but a Christmas album seemed like a great way to end it,” chuckles frontman and principal composer Matt Hines, noting that the group’s third album combines holiday standards with what the band calls “soon-to-be classics” on nine tracks. “We took some favorites we thought we could re-create well, then took the spirit of those to create our own.”

First Christmas finds the band swapping darker folk-pop for jollier fare. Not that the band abandons its signature sound.

“We tried to make our mark on the songs, which can be difficult with classics, but songs like ‘Walking in the Air’ meshed with our aesthetic,” explains Hines.

After a kickoff at the Parish Saturday night, the band hits the road to spread the holiday cheer.

“We hope people get to hear some of their favorite Christmas tunes, and we hope they love what we thought emulated the spirit of Christmas.” – Abby Johnston


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