There’s no denying Manu Crooks has been a trailblazer in the Australian hip hop landscape. Regardless of who the top rappers are today, when Manu debuted his music it represented a huge shift in the culture, proving there were other ways that Aus hip hop could look, sound and be presented. Tracks like 2017’s ‘Blowin Up‘ and ‘Ridin‘ shone a light on Western Sydney in a way that was rarely seen but it also captured the imagination of countless first-generation Australians around the country who could see themselves represented in Manu and relate to the way he was incorporating sounds from the rapidly expanding US rap/trap scenes in a way that was rarely heard in local music. By the time ‘Fuego‘ ft. Anfa Rose dropped in 2018, there was a feeling in the air that Australia was on the cusp of a rap renaissance and Manu Crooks was one of the artists at the helm of it.
Over the next few years, Manu Crooks would opt for quality over quantity with several singles that would push his sound into new territory including the J Emz (OneFour) assisted ‘Hectic‘, Acclaim fave ‘Bastards‘ and another sonic switch-up in 2021 with Hooligan Hefs on ‘Don’t Cross The Line’.
Marking his first release of 2022, Manu Crooks returns with a brand new mixtape titled A Crooks Tape. The tape is a collection of 6 new tracks, all recorded over the last month. Teaming up with producers AKWA, BIG LOU, KB, TRIP, LOOISEY, BEN G and 1WIRESHARK, Manu presents a selection of tracks exploring different vibes and showcasing Manu’s artistic growth as he continues to push the AU sound into new territory.
As Manu continues to expand his sound, he offers up a strong mixtape showcasing a selection of styles that we’d love to hear him tap into more in the future. The question is now, what do the people want to hear more of? From the uptempo club-ready BIG PLANS, the dark and grungy grit of NO DENYING, the swagger of IDOLS which cleverly samples Eminem’s ‘Cleanin’ Out My Closet’ or the hard-hitting bounce of EYES FREESTYLE. Wherever he takes us next we know it will be something to pay attention to.
Follow Manu Crooks here for more and check out the full mixtape and visualiser above or stream below on Soundcloud.
- BIG PLANS prod by AKWA
- NO DENYING prod by BIG LOU
- IDOLS prod by AKWA
- FETCH prod by BIG LOU x KB x TRIP
- FUN GAMES HEARTBREAK prod by BIG LOU x SPLITTED STUPID x LOOISEY
- EYES FREESTYLE prod by BIG LOU x BEN G x SPLITTED STUPID x 1WIRESHARK