Composer. Improvising-trombonist.

by Alex Paxton

“meticulously scored…seems to change with every bar, enfolding bite-size pieces of classic minimalism, brass brand tradition, electronic noise, & video game plasticity...intensely virtuosic and giddily joyful. electronically slathered trombone… Paxton is a monster improviser …connects his garrulous attack to the most extroverted playing of George Lewis & Roswell Rudd..."
Bandcamp Daily Best Contemporary Classical. Peter Margasak

“we’re stuck in the metaphor of words and its the abstract sensation that connects everything. My feeling is that art can go straight to the ball of abstract sensation that is in the centre of myself. It Bypasses words. That is what is real.” Alex Paxton interviewed by Andy Ingamells.


“Highly innovative, exceptional creative imagination and musical energy, packed with life force, unlike anything else.” BBC Music Magazine - The Ivor Novello Composer award WINNER 2021

“fantastically bananas free-jazz-orchestra maximalism ….. unmapped technicolour territory…. fantastical sound collages… like a cartoon rollercoaster… unfathomable glitching chaos…unique a vision as you might hear anywhere.” The Quietus

"a manic, full-frontal, maximalist music, coming at you like a freshly-unleashed tiger, with an energy that is inspiring...good-natured bedlam... spectacular multi-movement work commissioned by Ensemble Modern: it made me think of Harrison Birtwistle but with a broad grin instead of dour frown...Sometimes Voice of Aphex Twin...Corn-Crack Dreams of Louis Armstrong’s Hot Five transported in a time-machine...seriously intoxicating music” Arts Desk ilolli-pop

“meticulously scored…seems to change with every bar, enfolding bite-size pieces of classic minimalism, brass brand tradition, electronic noise, & video game plasticity..intensely virtuosic and giddily joyful. electronically slathered trombone… Paxton is a monster improviser …connects his garrulous attack to the most extroverted playing of George Lewis & Roswell Rudd..."
Bandcamp Daily Best Contemporary Classical. Peter Margasak

“a virtuosic trombonist as well as a great experimenter.” Verity Sharp, Late Junction BBC 3. (ilolli-pop)

“a genre-busting work” ECLAT Festival 

“Fantastic delirium...An effervescence of day glow energy that just can’t be resisted
BBC 3 New Music Show, Tom service

“jovial and gay… Vivaldi-like spring chicken energy… this music is like a refreshing drink of water after a long period of thirst…manic treat to keep our spirits up” Morning Star

“absurdly colorful…delirious sound universe of Alex Paxton is a staggering experience, vaguely frightening, demanding and joyful at the same time: abundant, teeming, teeming, overflowing, luxuriant, it resembles these wanderings of nature in an accidentally and exceptionally favorable environment, so nourished that 'they escape any rule or constraint - not to mention the law of gravity.….a hair-raising disc.”
Crescendo Magazine

”uncompromising intensity” Van Magazine

“play solo that made the eyes sting and then use his slide to make farting noises and knock over pints on the front tables…’religious, calm and imposing accents to savage, orgiastic outburst”…In the hands of a master like composer / improvisor Alex Paxton, the trombone does all this and more. cheerful chaos – more Some Mothers Do ’Ave ’Em  than Hellzapoppin’….crepuscular souls to perfection…Bone of his Bone Extraordinary.”
The Wire (ilolli-pop)

“wonderfully imaginative, manically energetic world of Alex Paxton, music that never seems to sit still, taking us on journeys across myriad brilliant textures and timbres…imaginative and madcap…terrific roller-coaster journey” Planet Hugill

“Paxton's imaginative tapestry of sound is one of the unexpected surprises of contemporary music: an elusive patchwork of improvisation and classical rigor, composite music and anarchy, a celebration of orchestral-jazz maximalism.” OndRaock

“a riotous, hot pink overabundance of love and rage”  The Wire (Mouth Song Take 1. live)

“Paxton has become something of a go-to composer for adventurous modern classical, improvising and experimental groups…sugar-high toddlers on a speeded-up merry-go-round, tossing jelly tots to dancing revellers…clever, rambunctious and hugely playful second album” Jazz in Europe (ilolli-pop Review)

“One day, classical music could turn into this and in all honesty we hope so…decomposes , resembles, tears whole pieces, mistreats them, puts back together by making Beethoven coexist with Mingus… sonorous harlequin whose dress is not made up from rhombus but of various geometric figures…the sensations, smells, colours of what our lives could be if only we could emancipate ourselves from current conditions of Homo Economics and simply becoming Humanity: a wild race, stripped of convictions rigid teachings and guided visions of the world around us.” Roots

“whirling chases, where strings, brass, collages and percussion collide by pouring out billions of sound stars, drawing their origins from the history of music….ilolli-pop is a source of wonder, with its improbable crossings and its definitively singular approach, where experiments turn into explosive melodies clinging to our eardrums, seeking to unlock the secret of absolute music. Vital.” Silence and Sound

“of considerable interest to followers of contemporary Jazz…full of Changes of pace and mood..always great fun” London Jazz News (ilolli-pop)

“Tentacle Flow…I think of circus trombones, jazz, noise, cartoon tunes, brass, slot machines, Walt Disney, Stravinsky, little creatures munching away. And all of this at a rapid pace. Paxton’s sound is funny. And pretty crazy. Where does this creative abundance come from?” Berner Kuluragena

“playful and reveals in the juxtapositions of stylistic extremes, kind of like Glen Miller meets noise music.” - Micheal Schell flotation device KBCS radio. (ilolli-pop)

“Really quirky, fun, dynamic…Wow! gives your senses a bit of shake...I tell you, I had to listen a number of times…absolutely terrific.” James McDougall, BBC Radio 3 (Corn-crake Dreams)

"something between cartoon music, free jazz and contemporary classical music" Gaudeamus Festival (ilolli-pop)

ilolli-pop is the second album by prolific composer and trombonist-improviser Alex Paxton. The release is a collage of Paxton’s commissions for Ensemble Modern (Germany), Nevis Ensemble (Scotland) and HYPER DUO (Switzerland). The album is joyous, playful, often loud and maximal, yet always carefully composed. It combines both improvisation and triumphant melodies, alternating between solo trombone, percussion duos, electronics and orchestra.

The release is accompanied by an essay commissioned by Nonclassical and written by Robert Worby, excerpt below. Read the full text here.

“One other characteristic that stands out in this album is humour. Not so much being funny – “I’m not playing for laughs” – but maybe absurdity. The speed, the gags, the cross references, the googly eyes of the music that’s made with everything creates a bubbling effervesce. But everything also makes us ponder and think and wonder and marvel and ask, ‘Did I get that?’ No doubt, Alex Paxton would say, YES!”


1.   ilolli-pop, 1lolli-pop 03:12
2.   ilolli-pop, 2lolli-pop 06:12  
3.   ilolli-pop, 3lolli-pop 05:24  
4.   ilolli-pop, 4lolli-pop 03:25  
5.   ilolli-pop, 5lolli-pop 07:08  
6.   Sometimes Voices 09:24  
7.   Corn-Crack Dreams   02:26  
8.   Mouth Song, Take 1   10:42

Single ‘ilolli-pop, 1lolli-pop’ out Thursday 1 September 2022 on digital.

Single ‘Sometimes Voices (mini)’ out Thursday 13 September 2022 on digital.

Full album out on Thursday 6 October 2022 on digital and limited-edition CD.

‘ilolli-pop 1-5’

Performed and recorded by Dreammusics ensemble and Alex Paxton (improvised trombone solo).

Originally commissioned and premiered by Ensemble Modern and Alex Paxton, and conducted by Enno Poppe at Cresc Biennial of Modern Music Frankfurt 2020.

Nominated for Gaudeamus Composer Award 2022.

‘ilolli-pop’  published by Ricordi

‘Sometimes Voices’

Performed and recorded by Dreamusics ensemble: James Larter (Drum Kit), Alex Paxton (Keyboards). Originally commissioned by HYPER DUO.

Nominated for the Gaudeamus Composer Award 2022.

2021 winner of Ivor Novello British Composer Award in the Chamber Music category.

‘Corn-Crack Dreams’

Performed and recorded by Dreammusics Ensemble: Alex Paxton (trombone) and Dominykas Snarskis (Drum Kit).Originally commissioned by Nevis Ensemble.

Nominated in 2021 for an Ivor Novello British composer award in the jazz composition category.

‘Mouth Song, Take 1’

Performed and recorded by Alex Paxton (Trombone).

All compositions by Alex Paxton.
Editing and mixing by Alex Paxton.
Mastered by Helmut Erler.

Alex Paxton

is a composer & improvising-trombonist based in the UK.

He was elected to the 9th International Composition Seminar with Ensemble Modern, won an Ivor Novello Award (multiple other nominations), RPS Composition Prize, Dankworth Jazz Prize, Leverhume Art Prize, Harriet Cohen Award, as well as represented in the Orchestral section of the ISCM.

He is a commissioned contributor to John Zorn’s Arcana X 2021. His albums to date: MUSIC for BOSCH PEOPLE released to critical acclaim in 2021. Upcoming releases include HAPPY MUSIC for ORCHESTRA & iLOLLI-POP. On labels including Birmingham Record Company, NMC, Delphian, Nonclassical, Listen Pony, Everest records.

He has performed his music as a soloist with leading orchestras: Ensemble Modern, London Sinfonietta, Philharmonia Orchestra , Royal National Scottish Orchestra & Ensemble x.y. Further works/ commissions include pieces for, AskSchöenberg, Ensemble Klang, Riot Ensemble, Nouvel Ensemble Contemporain, Wigmore Hall, Explore ensemble, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Kammer Klang, BSO, Psappa, BBCproms, NYO and NYJO.
Music theatre works include 6 operas hosted by English National Opera, Helios Colective, Tête à Tête Festival. Alex’s Music is published by Ricordi

Dreammusics Ensemble:
Alex Paxton (Solo Trombone)
Alyson Frazier (Flute, Piccolo)
Layla Köhler Baratto (Oboe, Cor Anglais)
Alex Roberts (Clarinet, Bass Clarinet, Eb Clarinet)
Olivia Palmer-Baker (Bassoon, Contraforte)
Zoë Tweed (French horn)
Richard Blake (Trumpet)
Benny Vernon (Trombone)
Beibei Wang (Percussion)
Joy Boole (Keyboard)
Lloyd Coleman (Keyboard)
Lasma Taimina (Violin)
Clifton Harrison (Viola)
Cecilia Bignall (Cello)
Gwen Reed (Double Bass)

Sometimes Voices
Dreammusics Ensemble:
James Larter (Drum Kit)
Alex Paxton (Keyboards)

Corncrack Dreams
Dreammusics Ensemble:
Alex Paxton (Trombone)
Dominykas Snarskis (Drum Kit)

Mouth Song. Take 1 (improvisation)
Alex Paxton (Trombone)


is a music promoter, record label and events producer presenting new classical, experimental and electronic music. Crossing genre and defying convention, we develop, produce and promote innovative music – supporting emerging artists and bringing new music to new audiences.

Founded in 2004 by composer Gabriel Prokofiev, Nonclassical began as a clubnight focused on presenting new music in non-traditional performance spaces. We have since presented events across the UK and worldwide, and our record label is home to artists including Tansy Davies, Aïsha Orazbayeva, Gabriel Prokofiev, Langham Research Centre, Tom Richards and many more.