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Matt Wilson Quartet: Humidity

Humidity is a smorgasbord of 12 songs and settings, nine composed by the New York drummer-leader Matt Wilson. The band plays bop, free-bop and free improvisation, mostly in a quartet setting, and the variety of textures and rhythms is the main attraction.

The opening “Thank You Billy Higgins” is a fine tribute with an Ornette Coleman-ish theme and crisp drums kicking roughneck tenor and alto solos. There are then two more fast numbers (“Swimming in the Trees” and “Cooperation”); two slow pastoral pieces with cool colors (“Free Willy” and “Wall Shadows”); an Indian-music pastiche (“Raga”); and, after “Code Yellow,” the title tune, which introduces trumpeter John Carlson and trombonist Curtis Hasselbring, whose moments of free collective improvisation alternate with a recurring rock pattern.

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