THE HANGMEN Bryan Small: Vox, Rhythm Guitar | Jimmy James: Lead Guitar
Jorge Disguster: Drums, Vox | Angelique Congleton: Bass, Vox
THE HANGMEN Born in Montana, raised in Boise, ID, Small moved to Los Angeles and formed The Hangmen in 1986, where they immediately caught the eye of Black Flag/Circle Jerks singer Keith Morris. Morris produced the original Hangmen demos and came on as manager. They signed a deal with Capitol Records and released their self-titled debut (produced by Vic Maile, Motorhead), but things soon came crashing down. A switch to DGC Records (the newly formed subsidiary of Geffen who’s roster included The Nymphs, Nirvana, etc) seemed like the perfect landing spot for the band. Unfortunately the Rob Younger (Radio Birdman) produced album Suicide Doors was never released and the band dissolved into addiction.
Not one to be down for long, a newly sober Small started writing again, the result was 2000’s Metallic I.O.U. Tours with longtime fans Social Distortion and the Supersuckers followed. Ness would later produce The Hangmen’s 2007 release In the City. “I totally feel like we’re kindred spirits,” Small says looking back, adding that both bands emphasize “simplicity, and doing what you do and staying true to that.”
In 2010, Hype Records, the popular Finnish record label, released Lost Rocks, an 18-song Hangmen retrospective. Shortly thereafter, former Supersucker, Rontrose Heathmen joined the band for 2012’s critically acclaimed East Of Western. 2019 marks the release of Cactusville and another chapter of The Hangmen legend continues. Small has taken his brand of songwriting to another level, putting him in an artistic class with the likes of Tom Petty and Neil Young as purveyors of the honest and simple. The title track Cactusville recants the tale of The Hangmen first tour in Tuscon, AZ where audience members included Supersuckers-to-be Eddie Spaghetti and Eric Martin. Small explains the song, “Eric and Ed knew the deal, we got fucked up in Cactusville,” then after a run in with a gun-toting father, Small tags the song, “It’s The Hangmen he wanted to kill, we got run out of Cactusville.”