The growls and purrs of his bass clarinet couldn’t be more distinctive, and the fact that he plays the oddball horn exclusively means he knows it inside out. In fact, that’s essentially Stein’s approach: roiling abstraction and thoughtful design are given equal footing in his world. A solo outing a few years ago illustrated the Chicago improviser’s love for pure sound. More recent dates for Three Kinds of Happiness reveal a zest for mixing it up with others. With Jon Irabagon up front with him, this foursome should frolic.
Tue., April 5, 9 p.m., 2011