MAX (pronounced "Max") is a Japanese female vocal group. The name is an acronym for "Musical Active eXperience". The original members of MAX made their musical debut as members of the Super Monkey's along with lead vocalist Namie Amuro. They branched out on their own in 1995, becoming stars in their own right with selling several million albums and a string of consecutive top 20 singles from 1996 to 2000. Their lead singer, Mina, left the group in 2002 due to pregnancy and was replaced by Aki Maeda who assumed the stage name Aki. Aki left the group in August 2008 to pursue a solo career. Original member Mina returned to the group on October 28, 2008 ushering in the group's comeback after a two-year hiatus.
Since their debut MAX has sold over 10 million records. They are behind only Morning Musume for female group with the most consecutive top 10 singles, tying with Wink at 15. As a group, MAX established a new style for female idol groups, straying away from the traditional cute and innocent idol mold instead focusing on high impact choreography and a sexier, more adult image.