THE SOUND of the Judds' debut EP was so refreshing and imaginative that it was hard to believe it was fashioned within the predictable polyester confines of Nashville's country industry. Their first full-length album, "Why Not Me," continues to set the seamless, flowing harmonies of this mother- daughter duo in a warm tapestry of acoustic instrumentation that recalls the duo's Kentucky heritage while remaining absolutely contemporary in its sparkling clarity.
Part of the brilliance of producer Brent Maher and band leader and guitarist Don Potter is that their arrangements and material continue to echo the urbane vocal stylings that render Wynonna and Naomi Judd much more than country singers. While the Judds recall the angelic harmonies of the Everly Brothers on the lullaby, "Sleeping Heart," they swing and soar like the Andrews Sisters on "Bye Bye Baby Blues."
Throughout, the rich, liquid vocals of daughter Wynonna are marvelously unaffected, her sultry stylings casually touching on blues, jazz and rock. With the exception of the inappropriately ominous rock classic "Endless Sleep," the Judds' material is both lusciously melodic and indivisibly pop in the most natural way.
THE JUDDS -- "Why Not Me?" (RCA AHL1-5319); appearing Saturday at 8 at Fairfax High School Auditorium with B.J. Thomas.