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The Lascivious Biddies

Listening to the Lascivious Biddies reminds me of almost-winter falls and long walks and Italy and sleep-in-Monday mornings and old records with the scratchy sound in 'em and older women who insist on being called "a lady." So how does Amanda Monaco (guitar and vocals), Deidre Rodman (piano and vocals), Saskia Sunshine Lane (bass and vocals) and Lee Ann Westover (lead vocals and other neat instruments), a quartet of four seemingly well-behaved, wholesome, young women, come to label themselves "lascivious" (see "lustful," "lewd," "licentious," "wicked")? "Well actually the band name existed before the band existed," says Lee Ann. "Deidre knew Amanda from a jazz workshop and they had a group called the 'luscious biddies,' and Deidre told Amanda she had always wanted a band named 'The Lascivious Biddies.' Amanda thought that was such a good name so we decided to use it." "Wicked" describes Biddie-luxe, the group's self-produced freshman album, which has received widespread praise since its May release. "Rhode Island is Famous for You/Coney Island," the album's first track, is a jazzy remake of the 1948 Arthur Schwartz classic; "Ethel and Esther" recounts two spirited old women with creaking knees and cats for companions and "The Anthem" gives notice to all, that "lascivious" is not just a name--it's a state of being. On the whole, Biddie-luxe is a pleasing compilation by four spirited dames whose patience and audacity is finally paying off. "The response has been amazing, just because no one is doing what we're doing," says Lee Ann. "[Our music] is so cheerful--cheerful without being schmaltzy." Indeed--now there's a word your grandmother would know. Catch the lascivious ones Sunday, Oct. 13, 9 p.m. Skylight Exchange, 405 1/2 W. Rosemary Street, Chapel Hill. 933-9550. --olufunke moses

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