• Rodrigo Amado and Luis Lopes

Portuguese guitarist Luis Lopes made his Chicago debut last year at the Hideout with trombonist Jeb Bishop and bassist Joshua Abrams as part of the Clean Feed festival. He returns to the club tonight leading his main working group, Humanization 4tet.

As I wrote last year, Lopes “doles out notes in measured, thoughtful doses, whether his style is clean and lyrical or dirty and choppy.” For this gritty group Lopes writes knotty, stylistically diverse tunes that abrade the border between postbop and free jazz, but he’s ensemble oriented enough that you might not guess he’s the bandleader just from listening. Indeed, Lopes seems somewhat deferential to his superb saxophonist, fellow Lisbon resident Rodrigo Amado—perhaps the most forceful and acclaimed contemporary Portuguese improviser.