Stoop – ‘Cratehead’


Enamoring in its sample-friendly dimensions from classic soul to hip-hop grooves and pop, Cratehead is a lovely new album from Stoop. The Fort Collins-based artist presents an eclectic sound, drawing on influences like DJ Premier, J Dilla, and The Alchemist in melding instrumental hip-hop hypnotics with classic touching stones in folk, soul, and throwback pop. Per the artist, the album “serves as a captivating blank canvas for emcees to unleash their lyrical prowess.” And while talented vocal flows could certainly stir in addition, the instrumentation on Cratehead thoroughly captivates on its own, as well.

Glistening keys, a hip-hop rhythmic nostalgia, and intermittent vocal samples converge on the gripping opener “The Origin,” quickly showcasing the project’s atmospheric talents. Following, “Daybreaks & Heartaches” weaves soothing vocal effects and twangy guitars for a chilling effect. Atmosphere is palpable throughout the release, from the lushly exotic woodwinds within “Cherry Blossom” to the soulful string-laden throwback feeling of “Stay High.” A blissful, transportive production takes hold on Cratehead.

“The Origin” and other tracks featured this month can be streamed on the updating Obscure Sound’s ‘Best of December 2023’ Spotify playlist.

The track is also featured in the genre-based, best-of Spotify compilation Rainy Days and Late Night Drives.

We discovered this release via MusoSoup, as part of the artist’s promotional campaign.

Mike Mineo

I'm the founder/editor of Obscure Sound, which was formed in 2006. Previously, I wrote for PopMatters and Stylus Magazine.

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