Underground rap sensation Captain Murphy packaged his debut mix tape, Duality, with a visually stunning music video. Set aside 35 minutes and multiple bowls of your finest herb to properly absorb this musical-visual mixture of pure creativity and strangeness.
The enigmatic Captain Murphy began his mysterious career last July, when he dropped “Between Friends,” featuring Earl Sweatshirt on a track produced by Flying Lotus. Since then he has released various singles, many of which he includes in Duality. Some speculated that Captain Murphy was the new alias for an Odd Future member or the rapping ego of Flying Lotus. His identity still remains unknown, although the OF speculation can be ruled out due to his pronouncement of membership to Flying Lotus’s music label, Brainfeeder.
The video frames the the mix tape as a trippy indoctrination into Captain Murphy’s cult. The topics of Captain Murphy’s sermons vary between mind-expansion, debauchery, and misanthropy. The production on many of the songs comes from such illustrious names as Just Blaze, Madlib, Clams Casino, TNGHT, Flying Lotus, and Teebs.
The video clips range from vintage cult propaganda (Heaven’s Gate cult imitation is interspersed throughout) to obscure occult-horror films to pornography. Working with already absurd video materials, the editing provides the psychedelic visual counterpart to Murphy’s maniacal lyrics. The edits frequently superimpose “hypnotic swirls,” technicolor visuals, and images like satanist cult symbols over the primary video clip.
The mastermind behind the project deserves some distance, I think his commitment to anonymity is partly a statement against the mystery-killing consequences of social media. The real man behind the name doesn’t want credit for his art, as he candidly put it on twitter: “When the shit drops you’re gonna get over the idea of me being some other rapper alias. That shit is annoying as fuck. I’m a cartoon. fuck u” The lesson can certainly be applied to graffiti and the occasional writers who reveal their true identities for the sake of notoriety or whatever it may be.