Maxim (musician)

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Maxim
Maxim on tour in Washington, D.C. in 2007
Maxim on tour in Washington, D.C. in 2007
Background information
Birth nameKeith Andrew Palmer
Born (1967-03-21) 21 March 1967 (age 53)
Peterborough, England
Genres
Instruments
Associated actsThe Prodigy
SigMaximReality.svg
Maxim's signature

Keith Andrew Palmer[1] (born 21 March 1967),[2] better known by his stage name Maxim (previously Maxim Reality), is an English musician, known for being a vocalist of electronic music band the Prodigy.

Pre-Prodigy history[edit]

Palmer was born in Peterborough to Jamaican parents.[3] He enjoyed writing poetry and verse and began MC-ing around the age of 14. He gained inspiration from his ten-year older MC brother, Hitman, who introduced him into the Peterborough Reggae Soundsystem Scene.[2] At the age of seventeen he had his first gig in Basingstoke. Ian Sherman, a fellow musician from Nottingham teamed up with Maxim and they formed Maxim and Sheik YanGroove. After recording some tracks together without attracting much attention, Maxim left and went on a three-month travel throughout Europe and North Africa. Upon returning to England he moved to London to get involved in the music and reggae scene.[4] His prior stage name, "Maxim Reality", was a reference to his interest in lyrics based on real issues.[3]

MC of The Prodigy[edit]

Maxim live in Philadelphia, 2009

Maxim lived near Keith Flint, a fan of Liam Howlett. After convincing Howlett to start a band, Flint recommended Maxim as a manager on the strength of Maxim's experience in the reggae scene and the music contacts he developed. Maxim did not show up at a scheduled meeting but joined them unexpectedly at their next gig, improvising lyrics.[5] After MCing, Maxim contributed lyrics to studio albums after Experience from 1992 (although his vocal contributions were heard in the live track "Death of the Prodigy Dancers" on Experience). Maxim provided lyrics in the single "Poison" from Music For the Jilted Generation (1994), "Breathe", and the canned single release "Mindfields" both from The Fat of the Land (1997). However, Maxim was absent from the Prodigy album Always Outnumbered, Never Outgunned from 2004; Howlett said he believed the band needed to reinvent itself, without vocals from Flint or Maxim. Despite rumors to the contrary, the band did not break up, though Maxim explored a solo career.[6] On Invaders Must Die, Maxim returned as a vocalist, as the band reverted to its prior way of working.[7]

Solo projects[edit]

Maxim live in Philadelphia, 2009

After the Prodigy's intense touring to support The Fat of the Land, Maxim worked on his solo projects, and in 1998 he released "Dog Day" on XL Recordings compilation CD "Against the Grain"[8], which also featured Howlett's "Dirtchamber Remix" of "Diesel Power" (from The Fat of the Land). Also in 1998, Maxim's cover version of the Rolling Stones' "Factory Girl" was released on Beggars Banquet Record label's "21 Beggars Banquet" compilation CD.[9] On 9 August 1999 Maxim released the EP My Web, which contained five tracks.[10] In 2000 Maxim collaborated with Skin from Skunk Anansie on the song "Carmen Queasy", which remains his biggest solo success, peaking at number 33 on the UK Singles Chart in June that year.[11] Maxim released a second single, "Scheming", on 11 September 2000, which reached number 53 in the UK Singles Chart,[11] and released his debut album, Hell's Kitchen, on 2 October 2000. Maxim's second solo album, Fallen Angel, was released in 2005[12] and spawned one single, "I Don't Care," which failed to chart. The album was released in multiple formats, including a limited edition CD.

Maxim has performed as a DJ and in 2013 had his first United States DJ tour. He's quoted as saying, “DJing for me is a completely fresh challenge – it gives me the opportunity to play music I’m into. I love the spontaneity, its freestyle form.”[13] Maxim's DJing was inspired by trap, and in 2014 he collaborated with Cianna Blaze and producer Blaze Billions to create and release original tracks that he could DJ, released under the name “We Are Noize”.[14] In an interview Maxim said that the collaboration was a 'collective' not a new band.[15]

In September 2019 Maxim signed an exclusive global publishing deal with Peermusic that includes their partnership on Maxim's "Red Room Arts" publishing company.[16] In December 2019 Maxim's third solo album Love More was released on "Red Room Arts" record label.[17]

Art[edit]

Using the pseudonym MM (Double M)[18] for his mixed media artworks, Maxim's first exhibition was named "Lepidop Terror" and held in September 2011 at INC Space in London's Covent Garden.[19][1][20] Some of his artwork is displayed online at Taylor Barnes Gallery.[21] Maxim has donated pieces of his artwork to fundraising causes including in 2020 the "heART & Soul Auction"[22] for "Arms Around the Child"[23] and the online anti-racism exhibition "United for Change" hosted by Artnet to raise funds for the Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust in the UK and "Underground Museum" and "For Freedoms" in the US.[24]

Discography[edit]

With the Prodigy[edit]

Albums[edit]

  • 2000: Hell's Kitchen (released 2 October)
  • 2005: Fallen Angel (released 29 March)
  • 2019: Love More (released 16 December)

Singles and EPs[edit]

  • 1994: "Grim Reaper EP" (only 500 copies made; white label)
  • 1999: "My Web" (released 9 August)
  • 2000: "Carmen Queasy" (released 29 May)
  • 2000: "Scheming" (released 11 September)
  • 2005: "I Don't Care"

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Observations: Maxim turns to smack his butterflies up". The Independent. 23 September 2011. Retrieved 21 June 2020.
  2. ^ a b O'Brien, Jon. "Maxim". AllMusic. Retrieved 21 August 2020.
  3. ^ a b Salamon, Jeff (September 1997). "Prodigy Invade America: Our September 1997 Cover Story on The Prodigy". Spin. Retrieved 21 August 2020.
  4. ^ Roach, Martin (2020). "Chapter 1". The Prodigy: The Official Story - Electronic Punks. John Blake Publishing. ISBN 978-1-78418-964-8.
  5. ^ Doran, John (27 August 2008). "The Prodigy Talk To The Quietus About Experience And Jilted Generation". The Quietus. Retrieved 12 November 2018.
  6. ^ Batey, Angus (5 February 2009). "'We're animals. We have to stay hungry'". The Guardian. Retrieved 12 November 2018.
  7. ^ Himmer, Alastair (24 February 2009). "Just A Minute With: British band The Prodigy". Reuters. Retrieved 12 November 2018.
  8. ^ "Various - Against The Grain - XL Recordings". Discogs. Retrieved 20 June 2020.
  9. ^ "Various - 21 Beggars Banquet". Discogs. Retrieved 20 June 2020.
  10. ^ "Solo projects » Maxim » Maxim - My Web EP release info - The Prodigy .info". theprodigy.info. Retrieved 20 June 2020.
  11. ^ a b Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 356. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  12. ^ "Maxim - Fallen Angel". Discogs. Retrieved 20 June 2020.
  13. ^ "Maxim of the Prodigy Announces First U.S. DJ Tour Ft. Cianna Blaze". beatcue.com. 3 October 2013. Retrieved 25 August 2020.
  14. ^ September 2014, Computer Music01. "Maxim Reality on life beyond The Prodigy with We Are Noize". MusicRadar. Retrieved 25 August 2020.
  15. ^ "We Are Noize". DMC World Magazine. 29 April 2014. Retrieved 25 August 2020.
  16. ^ "peermusic UK signs the Prodigy's Maxim Reality to exclusive global publishing deal". Music Business Worldwide. 6 September 2019. Retrieved 21 June 2020.
  17. ^ "Maxim - Love More". Discogs. Retrieved 21 June 2020.
  18. ^ "ABOUT — MM Gallery - Original Art by Maxim from The Prodigy". MM Gallery. Retrieved 21 June 2020.
  19. ^ "Prodigy rapper stages exhibition". BBC News. 15 September 2011. Retrieved 21 June 2020.
  20. ^ "The Prodigy's Maxim Reality stages debut art show". The Independent. 13 September 2011. Retrieved 21 June 2020.
  21. ^ "Turner Barnes Gallery | UK based Art Gallery | International Art Dealers". Turner | Barnes | Gallery. 13 October 2016. Retrieved 21 June 2020.
  22. ^ Westall, Mark (19 February 2020). "Leading artists donate to heART & SOUL, the second biannual auction in aid of Arms Around The Child". FAD Magazine. Retrieved 21 June 2020.
  23. ^ "New". Arms Around The Child. Retrieved 21 June 2020.
  24. ^ "United For Change: An Anti-Racism Artnet Fundraising Exhibition on artnet". www.artnet.com. Retrieved 21 June 2020.

External links[edit]