"Hangar 18" is a song by American heavy metal band Megadeth from the 1990 album Rust in Peace. UFO conspiracy theories, or possibly Hangar 18, the 1980 film based on those theories, inspired drummer Nick Menza to write the lyrics. Shortly thereafter, frontman Dave Mustaine composed the bulk of the music. The intro is a rapidly strummed version of the D-minor arpeggio that Mustaine wrote for the Metallica instrumental track "The Call of Ktulu", which was the final Metallica music he was credited for. Hangar 18 is located at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base near Dayton, Ohio, and it is speculated that an alien aircraft was brought there from Roswell in 1947. The song reached number #25 on the Irish Singles Chart, also reached number #26 on the UK Singles Chart.
A sequel to this song called "Return to Hangar" was included on Megadeth's ninth album The World Needs a Hero. It tells the fictional story of the life-forms said to be contained in Hangar 18 coming back to life and killing those inside the building before escaping.
"Hangar 18" was nominated for Best Metal Performance at the 1992 Grammy Awards.
The "Hangar 18" video is themed after the song's lyrical concept. It depicts the torture of aliens and, at the end, shows all the band members in freezing chambers. The video was shot in San Pedro, Los Angeles at a Water & Power building. Coincidentally, the band would film the video for "Crush 'Em" on this same site nine years later. An edited version of "Hangar 18" is typically shown on MTV2 which has the song length cut down drastically. During the intro to the video the song "Dawn Patrol" from the Rust in Peace album can be heard in the background.
"Hangar 18" since its launch has had few covers sung by other artists, most of all, included in those tribute albums to the band. The group Fairlight covered the song on the albums of various artists Megaded: A Tribute to Megadeth in 1999 and This Is the News! The Megadeth Tribute in 2007. The Metal Allstars covered the song from album Megadeth Tribute in 2007. The String Tribute Players also covered the song in 2009 from album Megadeth String Tribute. The band DeadXheaD has also covered the song. The bands Necropolis, Deathinition, Lateralis, Rust in Beer, Rattledeth and Dirty Black covered the song live. "Hangar 18" is also featured in the video game Guitar Hero II.
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- The "Hangar 18" video is referenced in the Duck Dodgers episode "In Space, No One Can Hear You Rock", where title character resurrects Dave Mustaine (played by himself) from a freezing chamber to play enough heavy metal to overload an evil device.
- An Easter egg in the computer game Deus Ex: Human Revolution contains the phrases of this song along with a mention of "Hangar 18".
- US CD single (C2 15662)
- "Hangar 18" (AOR Edit) - 3:17
- "Hangar 18" (LP Version) - 5:14
- "The Conjuring" (Live)♱ - 5:06
- "Hook in Mouth" (Live)♱ - 4:28
• (♱) Recorded live at Wembley Stadium, London, England on October 14, 1990.