Bert Wilson & Rebirth

Endless Fingers

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Bert Wilson, a survivor of the 1960s, has maintained a low profile through the decades but is still a major improviser. Most of his recordings for the past 15 years have been with his own FMO label, making this better-distributed effort for Arabesque probably the most available of all of his sets. Wilson, who switches between alto, tenor, bass clarinet, and soprano, has an original sound on all of his instruments, inspired by the freer flights of Eric Dolphy and Ornette Coleman. Teamed up with the fine flutist Nancy Curtis, pianist Craig Hoyer, either Dan Schulte or Peter Vinikow on bass, and drummer Bob Meyer, Wilson displays his versatility on originals that are generally straight-ahead but open to explorative solos; his bass clarinet cadenza on the opening "Endless Fingers" is particularly memorable. Two songs add the tenor of Chuck Stentz with "Onslaught" being a colorful and boppish tenor battle. A particularly impressive effort with inventive playing from all of the musicians, this adventurous but not inaccessible set of original music serves as a perfect introduction to the talented Bert Wilson.

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