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Live review: Staying up past bedtime at Gooski's 

There's nothing like turning the clock forward to subtly distort your sense of reality for the next several days. We all "agree" on it (if you don't count Indiana, and who does?), yet physically, it feels a bit off. Here's some more consensus-based reality that feels wrong: According to Wikipedia, daylight-savings time was first proposed by an English gent by the name of William Willett, who just so happens to be the great-great-grandfather of Coldplay's Chris Martin. Who wrote, naturally enough, the song "Clocks."

This bit of trivia came up and was bandied about at Gooski's in the aftermath of Life in Bed's March 10 CD release show. Everyone's cell-phone clocks reset themselves, and although things wrapped up fairly quickly, there's still a little buzz of rockworthyness when you realize you're still drinking at Gooski's with your friends and it's technically after 3 a.m.

Though the evening's mood and crowd were subdued, it was certainly one of Life in Bed's more riveting performances of late. Gooski's is kind of a mystery of the faith in the sense that, despite being a tiny room with barely half a PA system, it's almost impossible for a band to sound bad there. For Life in Bed's set, the sound was remarkably clear, with each instrument -- even the tricky interlocking guitars -- occupying discrete sonic spaces. As the band played new tunes from Passed and Presents plus a couple oldies, the members seemed to play the tempos against the emotional dynamics, stretching a quiet verse or breakdown almost to the breaking point, or hitting an explosive chorus with a burst of speed.

This week an unusually large delegation from the Pittsburgh music scene is hitting the road to perform at the prestigious South By Southwest festival and music conference in Austin, Texas. Among them are some relatively fresh faces -- such as Black Moth Super Rainbow -- as well as veteran standard-bearers The Cynics. Also scheduled to perform are Don Caballero, Grand Buffet, Midnite Snake, Power Pill Fist, Rusted Root's Michael Glabicki and the ever-controversial mash-up artist Girl Talk. A couple more are supposed to be performing guerrilla gigs and at unofficial parties.

The festival also includes interactive media and film elements. Pittsburgh-based artist Mike Budai -- well known around here for his brilliantly colored, silk-screened posters for underground shows -- will be on hand for Flatstock, a poster convention. Budai's reportedly receiving an award for a piece designed for a 2006 concert in Austin.

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