Composer. Improvising-trombonist.

Happy Music for Orchestra (2023)

Delphian Label


“A Magician of Sound.
classical-jazz sonic blasts ...violently overwhelming...I was seduced, and am not the only one
...digesting Louis Armstrong’s Hot Five band recordings, John Zorn’s Downtown experimentalism, Harrison Birtwistle’s brash blocks of sound, music of the Celtic oral tradition, Hildegard von Bingen’s medieval chants — and it all comes out, sometimes at once...carefully constructed ...forbiddingly dense it is balanced by its playfulness... hyperkinetic rainbow-hued...its joy and freedom.”
Financial Times (Happy Music for Orchestra Feature)

“Paxton will Make your ears ping..brings brightly coloured, loopy joy to our ears..sweet energy & frantic humour...It’s jazzy & noisy & oddly serious.” The Guardian (Fiona Maddocks- Happy Music for Orchestra Review)

“an opportunity to revisit that early life carnival of sensation, to suspend the imperatives of orderly and goal-orientated progress and luxuriate in immediacy...wild imaginings...Paxton forges structures that miraculously hold together, while threatening constantly to burst apart from the sheer exuberance of his tempestuous orchestration...the orchestra seem to skip, hop or spin as the mood of the instant demands....melodic fragments flitter like incidental patterns forming across the brilliantly tinted surface of a swarming continuum....conceptually sophisticated as well as irrepressible in spirit.” the Wire (Happy Music for Orchestra Review)

“A raptors gurgling a cataract of catharsis, an album we can’t get enough of hear not he new music show...a pleasure garden of torrents and plashes” New Music Show BBC Radio 3 (Water Music)

“Sheer sensual sonic magic from Alex Paxton on that whole album...
I just wish they (Dreammusics Orchestra) were sound tracking all of my slumbers.” 

New Music Show BBC Radio 3 (Love Kittens)

“Chaotic, frenzied and maximised sensation is the order of the day for Alex Paxton’s gloriously childlike...cartoonish world of blinding colour, elastic movement and warm humour...frenzied action...ecstatic surges and sudden lulls evoke a child gradually tiring themselves out with play...meticulous, finger-breaking arrangements. Paxton presents tension between raw, fleeting sensation and the restrictive geometry of emotional expression...gorgeous, yearning melody...the difficulty of saying goodbye to a loved one is conveyed with moving realism. In focusing on raw sensation, Happy Music For Orchestra’s cartoonish character proves a disarmingly naturalistic, powerful means of expressing real emotion.” Quietus (Happy Music for Orchestra Review)

“a manic, full-frontal, maximalist music, coming at you like a freshly-unleashed tiger, with an energy that is inspiring & exhausting...African water drumming, free jazz, Ligeti, Roobarb and Custard...brave pursuit of a self-made vision...seriously intoxicating music” Arts Desk Happy Music for Orchestra

“A rising star...unique and restless approach...His style shines through with the use of a roaring and bustling brass, restless strings, high-pitched buzz and an omnipresent sense of playfulness and easy-goingness...Even without using electronic means, he creates the sense of a crisp hyperpop-infused electronic sound...(Bye) is reminiscent of meeting someone special who you do not want to part ways with... Paxton's lovely and complex layering of sounds, reminiscent of the hectic, anxiety-ridden modern-day lifestyle, should remind us that, even in the midst of unreplied emails, unpaid bills, and a growing sense of loneliness in a more-than-ever interconnected world, it is still possible to find joy and feel alive.” All About Jazz

"A candy store, which is so quite detailed excellent, so painted in all details. And then I had to think of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, the movie...also has such a clownish, actually sad undertone sometimes....I was really quite often moved while listening... Really very beautifully produced, because despite this overabundance and this insanely dense texture, it all remains audible through and you can really get into this space... And it's all about joy, happy music, joy. Not in clarity, balance, perfection and good taste, but in disorder, friction, imprecision and excess...insanely precise perfection in this disorder is great, because the rhythms are so complex. I find it rhythmically totally interesting through these hetero rhythmic actually never know what's coming. There is repetition, there are developments, you can sometimes read out something like motifs or themes, but actually it can all be over in the next moment and something completely different can come. You're always a bit up in the air and don't know what's going to happen.” SWR Record Review show “New Sound Carries”. (Happy Music for Orchestra Review)

“Playful entities... Over the course of numerous commissions and three studio albums Paxton’s has stood in defiance of traditional stylistic boundaries...uncompromising intensity...central to Paxton’s joyously maximalist aesthetic is an almost childlike innocence and playfulness present in so much of his work” Van Magazine (Happy Music for Orchestra feature)

“listen & then listen again & again to the opening a treasure box..multi layered treat...beautiful orchestral arrangements...almost perfect fusion between jazz & orchestral...noisy, fulsome and evocative..a cordial and mesmeric patchwork..the entire album is captivating...any improvised music lover presses “play” they will find it difficult to prise themselves eye-popping music...clever individual and very very good...there is everything to love about this album.” Platinum Mind (Happy Music for Orchestra Review)

“marvellous stuff..meticulously arranged frantic unpredictable arrangements that give the impression of improvisation.. sounds like absolutely nothing else.” Boogalo Radio

“It's brave to even attempt to put this composer into one box...the promise of utter enjoyment is high.”  Classical Music Daily (Happy Music for Orchestra Review)

“fun pieces...with child like joy” A closer listen.