The British saxophonist and composer Barbara Thompson is best-known for her work with Paraphernalia, the band she formed with her husband, the drummer Jon Hiseman. Thompson's compositions for the band are notable for their meticulous detail and complex harmonies, often with a rock sensibility.
Paraphernalia has a shifting line-up, with the latest version featuring long-term member Pete Lemer on keyboards and Billy Thompson on violins. 'Never Say Goodbye' is the band's 13th release on Intuition and Barbara says the music acknowledges the abiding influence that jazz and improvisation has had on them. Hence the decision to pay homage to all the great players, composers and bands, who have made jazz the most alive, vibrant and challenging music of the last hundred years.
The album features two well known standards written by John Coltrane and Benny Golson. Originals include "Living in the Fast Lane", originally composed as a three movement concerto for tuba and big band, re-arranged for Paraphernalia and some of the finest brass players in the UK.
Personnel: Barabara Thompson - (saxophones, clarinet), Jon Hiseman - (Pearl Drums, Paiste cymbals), Peter Lemer - (grand piano/Fender Rhodes 88), Billy Thompson - (violin & baritone violin), Dave Ball - (bass guitars), Rob Buckland - (alto & baritone saxes), Andy Scott - (tenor & baritone saxes), Ana Gracey - (improvised vocal), Derek Watkins, Stuart Brooks, Paul Spong, Simon Gardener - (trumpets, flugel Horns), Mark Nightingale, Andy Wood, Gordon Campbell - (trombones)
(4 stars) Freewheeling brass is anchored by electric bass and propulsive drums. A pleasure to have her back. -- The Times, (John Bungey), March 31, 2007