Murph Law
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Murph Law

Washington, D. C., Washington, D.C., United States | Established. Jan 01, 2014 | SELF | AFTRA

Washington, D. C., Washington, D.C., United States | SELF | AFTRA
Established on Jan, 2014
Solo Hip Hop Alternative

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Born and raised in Texas and musically indoctrinated in Georgia, Murph Law is as full of southern spirit as you can be. As a member of the thriving Washington, D.C. music scene, he brings a fresh energy and blend of influences that is refreshing and vital. Unlike many hip-hop/rap artists, Murph Law embraces the complete history of popular music, from The Beatles to Linkin Park, and from Jay-Z to Outkast, with elements of Kanye West, Lauryn Hill, Incubus and The Roots thrown in for good measure. Law's vision was encourage by opportunities to produce for artists such as Mase, Lil' Wayne and Jadakiss, who repeatedly praised his music as innovative and daring. These experiences led Murph Law to branch out on his own; the result being The Left Hand Revolt, a seventeen-track journey about the struggle to stay within yourself in spite of all the arms of society that try to strip away personal ideals and the sense of self.

The Left Hand Revolt shows both a talent for production and arrangement, and a willingness to not follow in the footpath of artists who have come before. The songwriting is a bit uneven at times, but generally very solid. Stylistically the album is all over the map, centering around rap and spoken word, with elements of hard rock (ala Public Enemy), jazz, blues and soul woven into the seams. "Good Things" is a musical diagnostic on the plight of African American youth, born into a future full of absent fathers and left to be raised by the streets. The vicious cycle is detailed in personal terms but with a clinical eye, with a mind toward finding a solution rather than laying blame for the way things are. "Wake Up" is built around an infectiously funky guitar riff, but gets bogged down in an overly repetitive and shrill use of the title within the song. "How We Do It" builds an arrangement out of rock guitar and horror movie piano riffs over an overly trebled drum/cymbal combo. Murph Law speaks in conversational rhythms here, following a traditional verse/chorus format. In spite of the lack of instrumentation, the song is catchy and sticks in your brain.

"Runnin' Away" is a dark and disturbed musical composition full of dissonant sounds that resolves into a Lenny Kravitz-style chorus. It's an intriguing listen; much more cohesive than it might appear on first listen. "Tha' Feed" decries the use of mass media to sway popular opinion and attitudes in terms that border on paranoia. A Kanye West influence is apparent here, both in lyrical composition and flow. "Good Enough" is a bit sophomoric, but is entertaining for its dark, pedantic lyrical approach. Murph Law falls into a comfortable zone on "Everybody (Looking For Something)", and maintains that place through Whatchagonnadoboutit" and "Soundtrack 2 Life". While Murph Law doesn't disappoint in this part of the album, he also doesn't make a strong impression on the listener.

"Tha Radio" is a dreamer's rant, the sort that empowers every artist to give up their lives at home and duke it out on the road for gigs, airplay and all that might come with a successful music career. Even lamenting the fact that his children might not know him when he comes home, Murph Law details the aim of every road warrior who have ever picked up a mic, strapped on a guitar, or spent 5 hours on the road for fifteen minutes of stage time. The almost conversational rap style here is appealing, giving the song a sense of reality. "They Don't Know" is at once apologist and motivational; a mission statement for making a difference in the world when you don't quite know how. On "U A Star", Murph Law celebrates everyday people who do what they do well. It's an alternative take on what a star is; dwelling on self-respect, hard work and attitude rather than on celebrity and bling. It's a great, positive message, well delivered. "All The World" is an intriguing number about the choice between making riches in this life or accumulating riches in the next, espousing a distinctly Christian philosophy that manages not to be inconsistent with the message of "Tha Radio". Law closes with "God Hates Your Lying Tongue", a riff on the Biblical take on lies and deceit. With a folk/rock feel and sung vocals, Murph Law shows more depth and breadth than you might normally expect from an artist who primarily travails the rap/hip-hop genres.

Murph Law is going to open some eyes with The Left Hand Revolt. The production choices made on the album are interesting; Law seems to aim at more of a "live" sound, but the levels are off at times, and there are times where there's an almost tinny sound to the mix. That notwithstanding, The Left Hand Revolt shows an artist who has blended a host of styles and influences into a sound that, if not wholly original, is nevertheless unusual. Murph Law certainly doesn't bat 1.000 on the album, but his blend of styles and sounds will keep you as intrigued as will his lyrical manifestations of deep thoughts on the state of the world. The Left Hand Revolt - Wildy Haskell of Impose Magazine




As writer and producer of The Left Hand Revolt, Vince Murphy, a.k.a. Murph Law, is priming himself to become a spokesperson for a generation of out of work and over-worked Americans who have had enough of business as usual. Although his rhymes are largely accompanied by live instrumentation, this release is not the average rap/rock hybrid. Blues, soul, and even folk influences can be heard throughout the album as well, resulting in a continuously engaging listen from beginning to end. Imagine the commanding tone of Chuck D coupled with the charisma of Kanye West or Lupe Fiasco as front man for a band that brings the energy of Linkin Park or N*E*R*D to mind. That should give you some idea of the sonic possibilities that this album possesses.
“Good Things” storms the speakers with cymbal crashes and melodic guitars as Murph briefly reflects upon past regrets and pushes towards determination to keep striving for something better. On “How We Do It” he describes himself as “a million dollar artist on a hundred dollar budget” and the song’s intensity is proof that he can use what’s at his disposal to create stellar selections. A dramatic piano sequence wafts underneath the crunch of hard rock axes that could burn through steel. “Tha’ Feed 2.0” turns the heavy metal quotient up to 11 as guitars grind their way through head-banging riffs that mirror the frustration felt in one’s pursuit of the American Dream. “Make sure your rims are spinning,” Murph advises. “Don’t want nobody else to know that your pockets are thinning.” Occupy Wall Street protesters have possibly found their theme song in “Whatchagonedoboutit,” a track so ferocious that it could inspire mosh pits to break out in financial districts worldwide.
Murph’s lyrical abilities are as diverse as the music underneath him, as shown by his humorous observations displayed on “They Don’t Know” to his magnetic swagger on “U A Star.” His rare insight on societal ills allows him to peel back layers in order to see the complete story. Check the second verse on “Soundtrack 2 Life” which details a drug dealer’s need to make money in order to buy the medication necessary to prolong his life (“I ain’t trying to get rich; I’m trying to keep breathing”). It’s these types of observations that make The Left Hand Revolt such a timely and relevant audio document.
“Tha Radio” is Murph making his case for heavy rotation airplay, a poignant reminder that unconventional sounds deserve AM and FM love. Folk samples set the mood for hand claps and rim shots to provide the ground for his rhymes to walk upon. It’s not hard to imagine the second verse being about his personal experience in the business, with A&R execs scratching their heads over how to market his music. A tender blend of flutes and guitars introduces the third verse as Murph shouts out all those who told him he wouldn’t make it. He is at his most cerebral and stunning on “All The World,” stripping the music down to a single guitar and a series of percussive pulses and ticks. Murph’s words take center stage and command the universe’s attention, stressing the importance of pushing past your comfort zone and not settling for the status quo. “By definition,” he instructs, “complacency is living a lie.”
In a day and age where people are storming their banks en masse and clearing out their accounts in an act of protest, The Left Hand Revolt couldn’t have come at a better time. Vince Murphy has created the soundtrack to not only class warfare, but the war that wages within us all. There will be many that echo Murph’s sentiments for better days and better ways, but as he reminds us, “It’s not a game if you wanna go beyond the mundane.”

Reviewed by Jason Randall Smith
Rating: 4 stars (out of 5)
- Jason Randall Smith


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

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Bio

Murph (Vince Murphy) is an artist that has consistently pushed the boundaries of its sound with a groundbreaking blend of rock, soul, and Hip Hop influences. His energy is reminiscent of the glory days when music was art and innovation was King. His signature sound is a flavor that defies conventional songwriting with a combination of energy and precision. Murph recently completed work on an incredible new album entitled "Music & Madness" an exploration of the battle within and against the external elements that we battle with in life and society.

Murph or was born and raised in Texas, musically bread in Georgia, and just recently decided to take his talents to DC to tap the music scene. With musical roots from the South and influences from all over the world, Murph is constantly reminded of his own personal musical heroes including groups and artists like Linkin Park, The Roots, NERD, Outkast, Lauryn Hill, Jay Z, Lupe Fiasco, Kanye West, Shinedown, Audioslave, and even groups from the past like the Beatles, Eric Clapton and CCR.

After having the opportunity to produce for artists like Mase, Lil Wayne and Jadakiss, Murph received a steady amount of praise from these artist, all together citing that his music was daring, eclectic and very different. Throughout this process of trying to make it in the business, the lesson learned was to always be true to yourself and your art.

With his globally appealing sound and amazing style, Murph is creating a diverse and loyal following of Geeks and Geeks alike. And that is why Murph is poised to make noise in an industry that seems ripe for the picking.

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