The right attitude may not mean everything in rock 'n' roll, but sometimes it seems that way. Consider, for example, the Slickee Boys' set last night at Desperado's.

Here's a local band that for years has specialized in neo-rockabilly and psychedelic sounds -- mutations, really -- that in the hands of more serious-minded folks have proved deadly. Not so with the Slickees; they like to rip it up.

In fact, so contagious is their enthusiasm, so kinetic their stage show, that it's easy to overlook their short-comings. True, the original tunes they performed weren't all that original and, apart from lead guitarist Marshall Keith, the band's instrumental lineup isn't particularly impressive. But even so, only limited floor space kept the capacity crowd from dancing the night away.

Fortunately, you can enjoy the Slickees in or out of your seat. Vocalist Mark Noone (in a gray business suit), guitarist Kim Kane (Rasputin in Day-Glo trousers) and the punkish Keith not only pulled off a rather bizarre fashion show but also a colorful, frenetic and eccentric rock performance as well. Rock 'n' roll has always had a sense of humor, and that fact isn't lost on the Slickee Boys.

By comparison, the Velvet Monkeys drew only polite applause earlier in the evening with their artsy and often dreary new wave rock.