The vibes are not without a reason. Obsidian was founded by previous Black Isle staff. As other projects with publishers fell through they started a Kickstarter for a game similar to the old infinity engine games (Baldur's Gate, Icewind Dale, Planescape Torment). This Kickstarter was incredibly successful and probably kept Obsidian in business, the result was the first Pillars game.
So no, the similarities to Baldur's Gate are no coincidence.
Dang, then I definitely gotta try out this and the previous game some time. I'd love to play a game like Baldur's Gate again.