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In 1987 the trio of John Butcher on tenor & soprano sax, Phil Durrant on violin & trombone, and John Russel on acoustic plectrum guitar, released this LP of free improvisations using superb forward-thinking dialog, remarkable 3 decades after its release!

Russell, John / Phil Durrant / John Butcher
Conceits (1987/1992)

Russell, John / Phil Durrant / John Butcher: Conceits (1987/1992) (Emanem)
Label: Emanem    
Released in: Great Britain    

"A reissue of the first LP by the exceptionally fine improvising trio of John Russell (guitar), Phil Durrant (violin and trombone) and John Butcher (saxophones). This group came into being in 1984 after Russell and Durrant had spent the previous two years performing in private with another saxophonist. For this debut LP, made in 1987, they performed eleven short pieces. This CD has been expanded by the inclusion of a previously unissued extended concert performance made a few years later. The strong beginnings of one of the best improvising groups of the 1980s and 1990s."-Emanem

"At least the LMC has organised what it calls a Christmas Club concert for this Tuesday at London's AIR Gallery. It might, improbably enough, he among the year's most interesting events: a trio performance by guitarist John Russell, saxophonist John Butcher and violinist Phil Durrant.

It's important because their trio album, Conceits (ACTA 1, £6.25), released some months ago, puts to flight almost every other record of improvised music of recent times. The intensity of the playing is taken to extraordinary lengths. As sparse as it is, the music is sometimes astonishingly dark and violent. The discipline of the group never falters: if one of them has nothing to say, he says nothing. Every fragment of music becomes significant.

Most of the pieces are two to four minutes long, each closing down on the first ending that comes up. That alone makes it a rare effort. Butcher and Durrant are both young veterans of this scene, the former a player who breaks open the extremes of free saxophone in order to find a more considered tongue, while the violinist travels restlessly between complete abstraction and a cracked romantic strain. Russell scratches a hobbledehoy line somewhere between them, tying the pieces together. It's a demanding language, but a sharp antidote to the boundless festivity which even jazz feels beholden to at this time of year."-Richard Cook, Sunday Times

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Improvised Music
Free Improvisation
London & UK Free Improvisation Scene
John Butcher
Trio Recordings
EMANEM & psi
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Price: $13.56
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Shipping Weight: 3.00 units

Quantity in Basket: None

Product Information:

UPC: 5030243503629

Label: Emanem
Catalog ID: 5036
Squidco Product Code: 20514

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2015
Country: Great Britain
Packaging: Cardboard Gatefold 3 Panels
Originally issused in 1987 on the UK Acta label as catalog code Acta 1.

1-11: recorded at Bracknell (South Hill Park Studio) on April 29th, 1987.

12: recorded live in Stockholm, Sweden (Antikvariat Bla Tornet) on July 3rd, 1992. Originally issused on the UK Acta label as catalog code Acta 1.


John Butcher-tenor saxophone, soprano saxophone

Phil Durrant-acoustic violin, trombone

John Russell-acoutsic plectrum guitar

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Track Listing:

1. How It Was 2:26

2. F.T.T. 2:34

3. The Skelloch 1:56

4. No Parallax 2:10

5. Rough 3:15

6. Liberal Dose (Audi Alteram Partem) 6:13

7. Fine Sharp And Leighton Buzzard 3:21

8. Pen Or Pencil 2:43

9. Interstices 3:17

10. Tumble 4:10

11. From The Eggs To The Apples 5:56

12. Soft Hours And Soligities 15:49