In development with Jojo Mayer for well over 2 years, Sabian finally announced the official launch of the Hoop Crasher at the annual Winter NAMM show in Anaheim last week. We say “official” because the Hoop Crasher has been a fixture on Mayer’s kit for almost 2 years, not to mention numerous other Sabian endorsers who have picked one up while visiting the factory.
“It has been without a doubt one of the most in-demand instruments by visiting endorsers,” says Sabian Marketing Manager Luis Cardoso. “Everyone from Tim
Austin (Buddy Guy) to Rodney Howard (Avril Lavigne) to Mark Guiliana (Beat Music) – even band & orchestral endorsers like Tim Fairbanks (Rhythm-X) – walk away with one tucked into their cymbal bag.”
So, how does it work? The Hoop Crasher is essentially an effects device that is placed over top of a snare drum. Drummers can then choose to play their snare with or without the effect simply by changing where they strike it. Hit your snare in the center of the head, and the snare’s sound is virtually unchanged. Hit it on or close to the Hoop Crasher, and the effect is pronounced.
“To achieve electronic production sounds on my snare, I’ve been modifying it by means of acoustic embellishments rather than electronic triggering. And so I have been experimenting over the years with broken cymbals, pieces of metal, even ashtrays. Sometimes they sound good – other times they sound like, well, like an ashtray,” comments Jojo Mayer. “After many years of research and testing, Mark Love and I have developed this device we named the Hoop Crasher.”
The Hoop Crasher is made from premium Sabian B20 Bronze Hi-Hats, and not from worn, recycled cymbals like similar devices from imitators. The top flotation ring is punched with 32 holes for lightness and lift, while the bottom ring is designed with an Air-Wave lip like those found on Sabian’s popular HHX and AAX X-Celerator Hats. The Air Wave lip keeps the hoop from sitting perfectly flat on the snare, which is a key factor in the ability to preserve the snare’s original sound. The two rings are riveted together, but the rivets are easily removed, allowing drummers to play them loose, as Jojo Mayer prefers, or even playing with just a single ring.
Adding even more versatility into the mix, the Hoop Crasher includes 3 custom C-clamps. The clamps’ purpose is two-fold. First, they prevent the Hoop Crasher from flying off the snare drum when played hard which, depending on the snare brand and hoop style, was definitely a factor in beta testing. But second, they are equipped with 3 teeth on the inside so that the degree of tightness can be adjusted. The result is that the clamp can be set to press down tight on the Hoop Crasher for short sustain sounds, or it can be set loose for more sustain and effect.
As a result, the Hoop Crasher is more than just another effects cymbal – it’s an analog effects device designed for drums, on which the amount of effect can be dialed in or out, much like electronic effects devices.