Chalk FarM delivers a cohesive, endearing album with their debut release, Notwithstanding. The choruses on this record are littered with instantly recognizable hooks that filter into the brain in an almost osmotic way, creating a sense of familiarity even on the first listen. "Lie on Lie" was the only single to make a minor dent into airplay; however, with proper promotion there could have easily been five or six radio-friendly singles on this project. "Live Tomorrow," "Lesson," "Hey," and "The Girl Is Crying" all had the potential of launching Notwithstanding into the mainstream music scene. Michael Duff's vocals, faintly reminiscent of Toad the Wet Sprocket's Glen Phillips, compliment his rhythmic acoustic guitar sound while having the agility to hold up when Trace Ritter's heavier electric chords come to the forefront. Chalk FarM's Notwithstanding is proof that sometimes it takes more than the ability to craft interesting, infectious pop songs to make a mark on the ever-changing conscious of popular music.
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AllMusic Review by Erik Crawford