Album Review: Notion Blue – The Son, the Liar, and the Victor


With the amount of records being released in the present era, ranging from the bedroom to high-class studio productions, it is quite a challenge to satisfy my hunger for music lately. Most of this has to do with the fact that the music being released today lacks sincerity. Maybe I am stuck badly to the old-school understanding of rock music, but even though I try so hard, it happens quite a lot that I cannot understand and enjoy the modern music. The sound of 1970s is my comfort zone.

Notion Blue from New Haven in Connecticut could be described as a true progressive rock/metal band with touches of metal here and there, offering well-thought melodies, interesting vocal arrangements, and passages that connect the dots that are quite enjoyable. Brothers Luke Chase (vocals, guitar, bass) and Gabe Chase (vocals, drums), and Max Barbi (vocals, keyboards) absolutely shine on the band’s full-length debut album The Son, the Liar, and the Victor.

After an opening intro “Memories,” the album continues with “The Gathering/Overture,” which shows that The Son, the Liar, and the Victor has a lot to offer. With often changes, Notion Blue distances themselves from delivering just a pure, lifeless showcase of technical proficiency, something that these guys definitely have, but rather presents the work that is alive, dynamic and above all, interesting.

References to various stylistically different artists can be heard in Notion Blue’s music. Their explorations within the classic era of progressive rock speak of that, but the band is not afraid to delve deeper and expand their horizons. As The Son, the Liar, and the Victor flows by, a listener is taken to a sound-trip that gets more metal-esque. Each of the songs on the album has its own personality, and labelling this record under a single genre would do this band a lot of injustice.

To summarise, The Son, the Liar, and the Victor is a record largely based on the progressive rock genre channelling many different elements. This is a true epic, both in length and amount of quality material, which requires quite a few listens to get into it. How far Notion Blue are ready to go? Time will tell. But for now they are on the right path.

The album is available from Bandcamp here.

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