For this article, I've decided to employ one of the oldest writing tactics from deep within my journalistic bag-of-tricks: "WHO, WHAT, WHEN, WHERE, HOW, WHY..." Hangar 18 was Hip-Hop crew consisting of emcees ALASKA & Windnbreeze and DJ paWL. Hangar 18, named after the Megadeath song of the same name, was together from 1994-2009 and released two albums—The Multi-Platinum Debut (2004) and Sweep The Leg (2007)—El-P's legendary and now-defunct Definitive Jux Records AKA Def Jux. Hangar 18 also, self-released both THE SHAMELESS SELF-PROMOTION CD (2003) and a 2006 compilation album entitled The Donkey Show, Volume 1 with remixes and features from Cryptic AKA Cryptic One, Blockhead, Aesop Rock, Bill G. and Blueprint. Hangar 18's members were also, part of larger New York/Tri-State Area crew Atoms Family, along with Cryptic One, DJ Cip-One, Jestoneart, Kasm, Molecule, Whichcraft, Genesis, Osirrus, Cannibal Ox's Vast Aire & Vordul Mega, and at times, up to 35 assorted members, active from about 1995-2005. Since their 2009 disbandment, ALASKA has released various projects as Crack Epidemic with Kojo Kisseih, IT with Cryptic One, WORDS HURT with Lang Vo, and most recently, He's The PJ, I'm ALASKA with PJ Katz. Director Paul Iannacchino, Jr. AKA DJ paWL filmed and released a 2015 documentary entitled ADULT RAPPERS and around the time of the film's wide release, Hangar 18/Atoms Family briefly re-formed as ATOMS to liberate Demo'd & SANDS, before disappearing back into the shadows of "Rap Dad-itude."
Just this past Friday, June 22nd, ALASKA dusted off a collection of previously unreleased/widely unavailable gems and unveiled them to the terribly unsuspecting masses; "I just put out a few old Hangar 18 rarities and unreleased songs on Bandcamp because I was bored. Enjoy," @alaska_ATOMS unsuspectingly Tweeted Friday afternoon. Here's what ALASKA told The Witzard about aptly-titled Hangar Rarities, via email: "It is a mix of things from the Sweep The Leg Sessions. Two songs ("Feet to Feet" & "Room to Breathe") are the original versions of songs that ended up on Sweep The Leg. We changed "Room to Breathe" because, if I recall correctly, we were idiots haha. And we changed "Feet to Feet" because of the sample used; Def Jux was very wary about sample clearance, after some issues with RJD2's albums. "[Tell] Me What You Got" was never released. We decided to keep it off the album for reasons I don't really remember. "Who Said It Best" was released as a digital B-side, I think, from the first single off of Sweep The Leg, if I recall correctly." Hangar 18's newly-unearthed Hangar Rarities EP is now available on Bandcamp for the extremely reasonable price of $2.00 flat. Plus, if you somehow still need convincing, Hangar Rarities' cover boasts a still image from Will Smith & Kevin James AKA ALASKA's 2005 Rom-Com, Hitch.