Wednesday, November 30, 2005

dancing on my boomerang

Crippled Dick Hot Wax has done us a great service by recently reissuing some great releases from the late 70s/early 80s post-punk scene that just keeps getting more and more attention of late. A number of months ago it was GRLZ: Women Ahead of Their Time, which featured a fantastic set of songs from the Slits, Rip Rig & Panic, Bow Wow Wow, Delta 5, and much much more. The leadoff track was from Bristol, UK's Maximum Joy- a Pop Group offshoot that was as funky, political, dubby and experimental as any of their peers from the era. Now, Crippled has decided to also give Maximum Joy the full reissue treatment with a wonderful collection of rare and hard to find 7", 12" and some album tracks too called Unlimited (1979-1983).

Fuelled by Thatcherism, inner city race riots and growing protest amongst young and old, Maximum Joy’s songs and melodies were about getting conscious and waking up to life, " …stay positive, stay plus, pulsate, pulsate no terminate, no end, it’s only just beginning…"

Sidenote: Their releases were found on the uber-hip Y Records and NYC's 99 Records (pronounced Nine Nine). The story goes that 99 was desperate to license Pigbag's 'Papa's Got A Brand New Pigbag' from Y Records. Y's owner was really trying to push Maximum Joy so said he would only license the Pigbag if 99 released a Maximum Joy record first. 99 agreed and put out an EP. Initially the plan was that 99 would release Y records in the States with Y releasing 99 records in the UK. This didn't work out and when it came to 99 releasing the Pigbag, 99 felt too many copies had been sold on import and decided to release Pigbag's next record instead. When he heard it he didn't like it, and decided not to release it and that was the end of any arrangement with Y.

While the boys often got the most attention from the recent rounds of revisiting, its great to see the girls getting their voices heard again as well. Some other blogs have already covered Maximum Joy recently so I will try to do some different tunes...

Maximum Joy - Building Bridges
Maximum Joy - Searching for a Feeling


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