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Three memorable albums recorded at the Hangar

Published: Sunday, Mar. 3, 2013 - 12:00 am | Page 8AANDE
Last Modified: Sunday, Mar. 3, 2013 - 2:59 pm

"Saturday Night Wrist" Deftones (2006)

Had it not been for this downtown recording space, the Deftones might still be a local garage band instead of Grammy winners who are touring the world.

Back when the Hangar was called Enharmonik Studios, it's where the Deftones recorded the demo that landed them a deal with Maverick/Warner Bros.

The Deftones returned to the Hangar for their 2006 album "Saturday Night Wrist," considered among the most turbulent sessions of the band's career. Marred by band infighting and difficulties jibing with the album's original producer, Bob Ezrin of Pink Floyd's "The Wall" fame, the group went on hiatus during its recording.

While the album was eventually recorded in numerous spots, including the Deftones' West Sacramento rehearsal space and Malibu's Morning View House, originally made famous by Incubus, "Saturday Night Wrist" coalesced at the Hangar, with production from Shaun Lopez of Far/ Revolution Smile fame. It ultimately reached No. 10 on Billboard's album charts.


Will Haven (1999)

The Hangar's a familiar spot for Will Haven, the Sacramento noise-metal band with a particularly strong following in Europe.

It's where the group recorded its 1997 debut album, "El Diablo," as well as "WHVN," the group's second full-length album. (It also laid down the booming drum tracks for 2007's "The Hierophant" there).

Released in 1999, "WHVN" helped cement Will Haven's fandom for intense, super-heavy metal. The popular hard rock magazine Kerrang! awarded four out of five "K"s for "WHVN," gushing that it was "one of the best albums of the year so far."

Jeff Irwin, guitarist of Will Haven, credits the Hangar's relaxed vibe and amenities for burning off steam or boredom during long recording sessions.

The Hangar's multiple skateboard ramps have always been a popular diversion for bands.

"Guitars were always the last thing to record, so I'd skate the ramp all day and by the time it was my turn I'd be all sweaty and tired," said Irwin. "We never felt trapped inside. We were always just stoked to be in the building."

"Listening Game"

Far (1992)

Long before "emo" bands reached the mainstream and sold millions of albums, Sacramento's Far mined this sound. The group recorded all of its first demos at Enharmonik/the Hangar, honing its blend of confessional lyrics and melodic guitar blast. This was also the location where Far recorded a cover of Jawbox's "Savory" with Chino Moreno of Deftones, in 1997.

"Listening Game" from 1992 marked the first full album from this pivotal Sacramento band, which later signed to Epic/Immortal Records and scored radio play with the single "Mother Mary." It captures an especially youthful Far, loud and impassioned. Far's largely been on hiatus since 1999 – but listen to bands such as Jimmy Eat World and you'll hear Far's influence.

"Looking back, that was a growth record that was really fun," said Jonah Matranga, Far's frontman. "(This studio) played a big part. It was a pro recording studio but it didn't feel sterile. It was a cool environment to be in."

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