Without Restrictions
Sound Quake
August 31, 2010

Without Track list
  1. Crying
  2. Traitors
  3. Ten A Dem
  4. Get Up
  5. World Inna Crisis
  6. To All My People
  7. We Ain't Leaving
  8. With You
  9. Be Aware
  10. Police And Informer
  11. How Long
  12. We Nuh Know
  13. Things You Gone Through
  14. Without Restrictions
  15. Long Road
  16. From The Day
  17. Outta Mi Heart
Rate this album!
Cast your vote below.

Essential -Votes: 9-
Very Good -Votes: 4-
Good -Votes: 2-
Average -Votes: 0-
Disappointing -Votes: 0-
A Waste Of Time -Votes: 1-

Total votes : 16
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 4/5 Backing : 4/5 Production : 5 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 4
Since he emerged on the scene in the late 1990s, and in particular when he released his sophomore album "Journey To Jah" in 2002, German reggae artist Gentleman has managed to make a significant international impact. The influence he had on the German reggae scene and the boost he has given reggae music in Germany and even Europe shouldn't be underestimated. Without any doubt he has paved the way for quite a few talented German reggae artists, but so far none of them has managed to achieve a real big breakthrough. However an up-and-coming modern roots singer who could succeed in bringing his music to an international audience is Cornadoor, voted "Best National Newcomer" in 2008 and again in 2009 by the readers of Riddim Magazine.

Growing up in Bielefeld, north-west Germany, Cornadoor (real name Philip Knoop) was introduced to Reggae by his father's record collection. His dad also took him to concerts and big festivals when he was still only a child. As a young man he went to the Carribean several times, getting to internalize the Carribean lifestyle and the local patois. When he got back home, Cornadoor joined some local soundsystems and bands, before recording a couple of demo tracks which finally left a lasting impression on his current record label, Sound Quake. This partnership has been going well since 2008 and, according to the "trendcharts.de" German Reggae Charts, Cornadoor was the most succesful German Reggae artist in 2009 with singles such as "Here I Am", the infectious "Chocolate Fudge" and "Long Road", of which only the latter is featured on his debut album, "Without Restrictions".

Cornadoor's voice can be compared with fellow artists Million Stylez and even Gentleman, but he surely isn't a copycat as he has developed a vocal style of his own. In contrast with Gentleman, Cornadoor doesn't have -- and also doesn't necessarily need -- collaboration tunes with Jamaican guest vocalists to add spice and colour to his first full length album. He has done all tunes by himself and that's truly very praiseworthy. "Without Restrictions" has huge vibes and is packed with entertaining, easy accessible tunes with a broad appeal.

The way the disc begins instantly captures the listener's attention. The bassline, guitar sound and the saxophone play along with the conscious lyrics -- "Are we ever gonna see a world free of war and crime, will we ever read the papers and hear of noone dying, out there on the road I hear the children crying", -- turn the Berteaut "Mr. Rude" Fleming (also producer of Ziggi Recado and Maikal X) produced "Crying" into a worthy album opener. From here up to the beautiful contemplative album closer, the Irievibrations produced "Outta Mi Heart", this set brings the listener enough worthwhile efforts to enjoy. Among these are definitely "Ten A Dem", a tune that deals with social injustice, the powerful "World Inna Crisis", the single "To All My People" across Phat & Lazy's "Love You More", the slow-paced ganja tune "Police And Informer", the excellent title track "Without Restrictions", and the 2008 hit single "Long Road" on the "Everyday" riddim. The only tune that doesn't fit the mood and vibes of the album is the soca-fueled dancehall tune "Things You Gone Through", although Cornadoor shows that he can also handle these kinda riddims.

Without doubt it ain't going to be an easy road for Cornadoor (who derived his artist name from the Jamaican proverb "Mi throw mi corn a door, but mi nuh call nuh fowl") to equal the popularity and reach the status of his fellow countryman Gentleman, but "Without Restrictions" fully showcases that he has the potential to become a strong force in the German as well as the European Reggae scene.