Lead singer and co-founder of original post punkers Maximum Joy Janine Rainforth made a welcome return to performing her music in 2014 after an absence of more than two decades. Performing under the name Rainforth, the first live outing of some of her haunting solo songs was supporting The Pop Group at the final gig of their sell out tour, Islington Assembly Rooms, October 2014. Her colleague, post punk/ industrial hip hop pioneer and The Pop Group front man Mark Stewart invited her to perform at their gig after hearing her latest material. Rainforth and Mark Stewart first met in the creative and collaborative heat of Bristol’s eclectic music scene in the late seventies/early eighties.
With Janine at the helm as vocalist and co-founder, Maximum Joy released a number of cult groove classics including Stretch and White and Green Place. The band toured extensively, and put out Station MXJY, an album part produced by the legendary Adrian Sherwood. The demand for re-releases of the back catalogue is ongoing, they have been featured on a Warp compilation celebrating Sherwood’s work. And this October Kiran Sande (Blackest Ever Black) and Chris Farrell (Idle Hands) released a selection of Maximum Joy singles on their newly formed label, Silent Street Records, named after a Maximum Joy song.

‘My new material is not a re-run of Maximum Joy but the same exploratory ethos remains strong in this work.’

Rainforth devises and constructs her work in her east London studio, hear some here.

Having helped keep the Maximum Joy name alive, in 2015 her organisation London Field Recordings was approached by Simple Things about a Simple Things gig for Maximum Joy – this was not the first time she’d seen propositions such as this – but this time it felt right and she took the leap and put the 2015 Maximum Joy together, along with original founder member Charlie Llewellin and Tony Wrafter and new players Marek Bero and James Byron to complete the line-up. Review of Simple Things here:

She is putting finishing touches to a new album with some of this line-up and is performing this and some of the Maximum Joy tunes live - the name for this outfit she feels has to be a true reflection of the altered state of the outfit, but to allow her strong links and all she’s contributed to Maximum Joy to remain.

Co-founder of Maximum Joy - Rainforth & MXMJOY.

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