Bristol, England's Maximum Joy was formed in 1979 by Janine Rainforth and Tony Wrafter founder members and joined by John Waddington, Charlie Llewellin and Dan Catsis. Blending punk, funk,soul, reggae and jazz they melded their own unique post-punk sound. Maximum Joy signed to the Rough Trade distributed Y Records and their first single, 'Stretch' (see Silence Is A Rhythm Too) came out in 1981. In the U.S. the record was distributed by the legendary 99 Records and became and underground NYC club classic. They released a further 2 singles in quick succession - In the Air & White and Green Place. Their LP, 'Station MXJY' was released in 1982 and was produced by Adrian Sherwood. Maximum Joy’s last single was a haunting version of "Why Can’t We Live Together", it was produced by (and featured backing vocals of) Dennis Bovell, it is a song as relevant today as it was when it was first recorded by Timmy Thomas on 1972. Recently seeing a revival in interest the band's re-released work in Europe and Japan. 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' (their LP) plus bonus tracks (including previously unreleased last single cover of Timmy Thomas classic 'Why Can't We Live Together featuring vocals by Janine Rainforth and Nellee Hooper) released by Beatink in Japan May 2007 BRC-193.
Also - Bugz in the Attic's re-mix of 'Stretch' on the 'Back to Mine' on DMC 'Silent Street' on K7!'scompilation 'Disco not Disco' 'Let it Take You There' re-mixed by Andrew Weatherall, Watch the Ride on Harmless 'Silent Street' re-mixed by DJ Maar on Collection Vol.1 Bijou R.I Sounds on Avex.
Janine is now producing solo work under the name j u rainforth - to be found on Last FM and elsewhere. Tony Wrafter is touring Eastern Europe with a successful troupe of traveling musicians and artists. Nellee Hooper is producing internationally acclaimed recording artists worldwide. Dan Catsis is playing bass with Mark Stewart and the Pop Group. The others are doing it their own way in their own style naturally. May the joy be with you. Maximum Joy was: Janine Rainforth (singer /violin/clarinet) Tony Wrafter (saxophonist/trumpeter, previously with Glaxo Babies) Charlie Llewellin (drums, previously of Glaxo Babies) John Waddington (guitar, previously of Pop Group) Dan Catsis (bass, previously of Pop Group and Glaxo Babies) and later: Kev (Ebo) Evan (Bass) Nellee Hooper (Sin Drum) Jeremy Hirsch (Trumpet)