John Butcher is one of the masters of the new generation of improvised sound. He began playing more traditional jazz in the early 1980s while working on a doctorate in physics (his thesis was concerned the theoretical properties of charmed quarks), but soon moved into free improvisation, working with Chris Burns and the excellent Australian group Polwechsel, and a longstanding trio with Phil Durrant and John Russell. In 1987 he founded ACTA records, on which heís released some of his strongest recordings (including the notable Thirteen Friendly Numbers. In the ensuing years, heís worked with many of Europeís finest improvisers, including Derek Bailey, Mish Mengelberg, Fred Frith, Kaffe Matthews, Carlos Zingaro, Rhodri Davies and Steve Beresford, but his solo work continues to be his most exceptional. Following in the British tradition of extended technique, his playing is open and spacious, challenging yet beautiful.