Bands 1982 - Onwards




Maximum Joy


Formed in 1979, Maximum Joy was originated by Janine Rainforth (singer/violin/clarinet) and Tony Wrafter (saxophonist/trumpeter, previously of another Bristol band, Glaxo Babies). Other founder members were Charlie Llewellin (drums, also previously of Glaxo Babies), John Waddington (guitar, formerly of Pop Group) and Dan Catsis (bass, previously of Glaxo Babies and Pop Group). In the wake of the infamous Pop Group and taking from the hotbed of musical influences driving the scene at the time, the band developed their own unique version of the post-punk Bristol sound.

Their groove combined punk, reggae, soulful jazz, funk and wild improvisation with daring and often panache... it hits the spot as much now as it did then.. and the the beat goes on... Fuelled by Thatcherism, innner city race riots and growing protest amongst young and old, Maximum Joy's songs and melodies were about getting concious and finding joy in a bleak landscape. They were signed by Y Records, distributed by Rough Trade, their first single, 'Stretch' came out in 1981 and was a big underground seller in Europe, Japan and the States. It made it into the NME indie charts, '99' Records disco re-mix became an underground Post punk/funk classic in the fashionable night clubs of New York.

The band's next single 'White and Green Place' was on the surface an upbeat funky number but underneath the theme reflected on the soul-lessness of image and shallowness percieved in modern day living. Later Kev (Ebo) Evans joined as bassist and the band went on to record the jazzy ethereal 'In the Air'. In 1982 their LP 'Station MXJY' mixed by the band and Adrian Sherwood was released. Soon after Nellee Hooper joined the band as percussionist and trumpet player Jeremy Hirsch also arrived.

Their last single was a cover of 'Why Can't We Live Together' by Timmy Thomas with b-side 'Man of Tribes' - it was produced by Dennis Bovell, prolific musician in his own right, he also guest vocalled on the b-side. Both tracks are featured on this My Space page. Crippled Dick Hot Wax released a compilation of Maximum Joy's 12" singles and assorted tracks in October 2005 - 'Maximum Joy Unlimited 1979-1983' (cdhw101). 'Station MXJY' is set to be re-released shortly. Check out Bugz in the Attic's re-mix of 'Stretch' on the latest 'Back to Mine' on DMC. Soon come 'Silent Street' on K7!'s new compilation 'Disco not Disco'.



More information at www.myspace.com/maximumjoyuk

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