Murphy's Law

Up with Us...Down with Them

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Once angry young men, Murphy's Law are now angry middle-aged white guys, or so the ferocity of their music suggests. For over two decades now, they've been slamming out hardcore based around blistering rhythms and incendiary guitar work, and today they're as musically aggressive as ever. Years of roadwork have won the Law a rabidly devoted following, which is much in evidence at all four of the shows featured on Up with Us...Down with Them. Ten songs (the bulk of this DVD) were filmed at a gig in Westchester, PA, and two other shows were also filmed in that state, while eight songs were shot at a fourth show in their native New York City. Over the years, the Law have developed a close relationship with their fans, and frontman Jimmy Gestapo doesn't so much perform for them as join in their fun, constantly gathering groups around him to shout or sing along. No between-song patter for him -- it's all meet and greet, shout-outs, and conversation. This easy intimacy works extremely well on film, pulling viewers straight into the center of the always crowded action on-stage and on the floor. The beers flow, joints are passed, audience and band become one writhing mass -- but for all the seeming chaos, the tightness of Murphy's Law's sound remains. Pulling songs from four shows creates the perfect super-sized set list that trawls through the band's lengthy career and releases. From the pogo punk of "Woke Up Tied Up" to the rockers reggae of "Bong," from the in-your-face crunch of "What Will the Neighbors Think" to the skacore delights of "Skinhead Girl," the Law know how to mix it and serve it up. But it's the band's energy that the fans feed off of, that and Gestapo's ability to turn every number into a fist-in-the-air, anthemic shout-along. The Law are on fire, the rhythm section virtually baying for blood, and Epic's guitar hot enough to create nuclear fusion. Four hell-raising nights, one helluva band.

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