MURPHY'S LAW (Buy CDs by this artist)
Murphy's Law (Rock Hotel/Profile) 1986
Back With a Bong! (Profile) 1989
These popular skate punks from Astoria, Queens take a wisely unserious approach to thrash on their fine debut album. The quartet varies the tempos every which way the LP only intermittently utilizes hardcore burn velocity holding fast to a rollicking punk spirit without conforming to its stylistic regulations. The clearly produced record's title track has a winning "arf-arf" chorus; "Sit Home & Rot" addresses the urgent topic of couch potatodom without apology; other numbers ratify such essential life functions as "Crucial Bar-B-Q," "Fun" and "Beer." Throughout, the violent energy, good playing and spirited vocals by lead singer Jimmy Gestapo (Drescher) make Murphy's Law (on green vinyl no less) a near- brilliant mistake.
Back With a Bong! repeats the feat, adding simple horn charts to songs about eating, drinking, dental health, buying/smoking dope and patriotism. (Does this actually make youth culture sense?) The mixture of brass and thrash is more surprising than effective except on a clumsy stab at ska, where the combination sounds awful but the quartet's refusal to leave punk alone just might lead somewhere amazing one of these days. (Judging by the song "Bong," reggae is not their wisest path.)[Ira Robbins]
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