Murphy and the Lawyers

Live review from 19th Anniversary Party:

1. Katmandu
2. Raggafire
3. 6 K miles away
4. Na Jai bobé
5. Red Light
6. Poiish Vodka
7. Super Saiyan
8. Antidote
9. Queen of Chess

Being used to seeing these guys as “Murphy’s Law” who won The Aftermath’s Battle of The Bands contest, Chris B explained during their introduction that another band on spotify had already taken that name, and facilitating their debut single on Spotify they decided to change their name to (in my opinion) the better name “Murphy & The Lawyers”. Noted prior to the gig was that the Drummer Akira had broke his finger, however the show must go on and they didn’t want to do a last-minute cancellation so the bassist (Kevin) took the drums and a friend of the band, Bambi, took the bass.

Starting with “Kathmandu”, the crowd was very intimately listening to the soulful intro with a few fans singing along already, the rest of the band members gelling well with the rhythm and getting into it, highlighting a sparkling sax solo that got hoots and hollers from the audience. A smooth segue into the next song “Raggafire” followed, with a reggae beat, ragga vocals, crowd members got dancing along with the tune, the band really getting into the groove, there were even members of the first band (Le Groupe Electrogène Fanfare Club) bringing out some percussion instruments and rhythmically tapping along to the beat.

The next song “6K Miles Away” had an even heavier dub reggae feel, this time the crowd really packing on to the dance floor, the dance party bobbing up and down like a wave. Next followed a new song “Na Jai bobé”, a song with a melody and rhythm that got the pumped up crowd dancing instantly, with very soulful melodies and afro beat vibes, and a very memorable steel drum accompaniment from the synth player. Before the next song “Red Light”, the singer heeded calls of the audience to take off his shirt, revealing a 19th anniversary t-shirt underneath. After taking a shot, they launched into a classic reggae guitar groove from the guitar, the crowd in full dancing mode after the first verse. The song had a very raunchy vibe, with the stage being lit up red appropriately to the song name, and featured an intricate Hammond organ solo. The next song “Poiish Vodka” had a very clubby feeling, the crowd was really getting into the rhythm, dancing and doing shots all around, with a lot of jogging and dancing during the song.

Following this the song “Super Saiya” raised the party vibe, with the song featuring a call and response style structure, the fiery guitar licks called and the vocals responded, the fans at the front were having an absolute blast to the afro beat interlude, and another Hammond solo eliciting a big cheer, the second half of the song got the crowd jumping and pogo-ing to the beat. The next song “Antidote” was another that had a very heavy reggae sound, the crowd members grooving hard to the dub feel. Their last song “Queen of Chess”, another new song, had again a very afro beat feel, prompting an intense energy from the crowd, a few members gang chanting “Oi” along to the fast driven vocals and rhythm, and ending with a standing ovation from the crowd.

Murphy & The Lawyer’s name change certainly didn’t impact their style and the same party vibe they were always known for was bought to the stage for this show, working the crowd extremely well with their blend of afro beat, reggae and pop, the crowd danced the night away to this amazing band.
– Sherman Leung

Live Review from Wild Boar Music Festival 野豬音樂節:

1. Raggafire
2. Red Light
3. Way Out
4. Super Saian
5. Foxy Waves
6. Break Us Again
7. Polish Vodka

The moment Murphy’s Law took the stage, the atmosphere of the festival changed. I remember turning to my fellow podmates – as we were, of course, observing social distancing measures from the comfortable safety of our cordoned-off deck chairs -to gauge their reaction. The festival sitting on the cusp of St Patrick’s Day and having seen a fair few kilts that day, I for one had been expecting some sort of fond homage to Irish punks, The Dropkick Murphy’s.

But this was discernibly different- and a lot more fitting.

Fundamentally opposed to their namesake, with their laid-back reggaeton tunes and biting lyrical flow, it’s hard to image anything going wrong for Murphy’s Law ever – even if the Universe deems it so.

Raggafire was a tantalising taster of things to come, replete with rumbling vocals and rhythmic staccato beats. For the first time that afternoon, whole groups of audience members peeled themselves away from their cosy seats to move, sing, and jam along to the music. Red Light saw the lead vocalist, charming as ever, put down his guitar to move around the stage, interacting with his bandmates and taking full command of the stage. The pared-back tranquility of the music matched their effortless synchronicity as a band; as musicians they are perfectly at ease with each other and with their music, and that joy is tangible to all.

Way Out kicked it up a notch with a touch of aggression in those heavier power chords – a punk rock kid’s bread and butter. At times, this combo of punk attitude and reggae rhythms gave off shades of their 90s lovechild, ska. Super Saian wound down with its grooving bass and crooning guitar solos, cooling the crowd down before getting them moving again for dance-and-singalong masterclass Break Us Again.

If the venue’d had a roof, Murphy’s Law would have set the bar right through it. They are musical embodiment of a cold mojito on a white sandy beach: effervescent, refreshing, classic- with twist of pure grit and artistry. Closing the set with the raucous Polish Vodka, you only needed to gaze around at the sea of beaming faces to think to yourself: yes. Now I’m at a damn music festival.
-Jasmine Gould-Wilson

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Performances by Murphy and the Lawyers: