This weekend, Jägermeister accomplished a world first by producing a thrilling continuous gig on air, sea and land, featuring Matt Tuck — lead singer of multi-award-winning British heavy metal band BULLET FOR MY VALENTINE. The adrenalin-filled gig, which marked the fifth and most extreme chapter in Jägermeister's Ice Cold Gig series, took place amidst (and above) the Lyngsfjord region, near Tromsø, in the stunning setting of North Norway, 192 miles north of the Arctic Circle.
Jägermeister, the iconic German herbal spirit renowned for pushing the limits in the music world, invited the BULLET FOR MY VALENTINE frontman, who has been part of the JägerMusic programme for years, to perform in this exhilarating world first attempt. The epic event encompasses three elements — never before associated with one continuous gig.
Matt and his unsuspecting audience of three loyal friends — completely oblivious to the adventure ahead until arriving at the dropzone — ascended to 15,000 feet above the stunning Lyngsfjord in a Eurocopter AS350 helicopter, set to start the show of a lifetime and truly test the bonds of friendship. Each paired with a specially trained instructor, Jägermeister's 2016 Ice Cold Gig started in freezing freefall with the band launched into the brutal -30 Norwegian air. After the icy and swift free-fall and with canopy opened at 7000 feet, Matt grabbed his guitar playing the first song of the gig, "The Last Fight", recorded on Zaxcom receivers for his floating audience, listening in on Sennheiser G3 headphones; a unique moment in music history.
Stage two of the Ice Cold Gig saw Matt and his mates whisked across the tranquil Lyngsfjord they had plummeted towards moments before, in a Buster Magnum speed boat. With wind chill factored in at -20 the challenge for Matt to sing and play the guitar was very real, yet spirits remained high with Matt wanting to put on a show deserving of his closest friends, who all sang along to Matt's second song of the gig, "Venom", the title track of BULLET FOR MY VALENTINE's phenomenally successful latest album which topped charts across the globe, and hit No. 3 in the UK.
When the quartet arrived back on land they were led by Siberian huskies through the glistening Norwegian snow towards the Gukkesgaissa Mountains with Matt playing his 2010 classic "Bittersweet Memories". Ushering his crew back to a traditional Norwegian Sami camp, the friends gathered alongside enthusiastic locals (including a couple of reindeer) — and, toasting to friendship and a world's first in music; air, sea and land, celebrated with a well-deserved ice cold shot of Jägermeister.
After the gig, Tuck said: "I've played some incredible gigs around the world, but that was right up there, literally. Jäger's Ice Cold Gig was one of the very best and definitely the most extreme! It's my first skydiving experience, so dealing with the excitement and nerves — even before you add in the ruthless cold — was intense, but totally worth it. It's awesome to say you did a world's first in music, but to do it with my best mates, the guys who were there with me from the beginning, made it unforgettable. Now for a drink!"
In the Ice Cold Gig series, there's no obstacle too big for Jägermeister to overcome. Jägermeister's 2015 Ice Cold Gig saw UK progressive rock band TESSERACT perform on top of an immense gigantic igloo, thought to be the world's biggest, spanning the equivalent of 3.5 double decker buses in Ylläs Village in Lapland, Finland.
In 2014, Jägermeister hosted the world's first gig on an iceberg with U.K. metal band THE DEFILED. The band performed a special set to a host of locals from the nearby town of Kulusuk Greenland, who ventured out to the ice field to watch this once-in-a-lifetime experience from an array of fishing boats and leisure craft.
Tom Carson, Jägermeister U.K. music manager, added: "We go bigger every year and because of the nature of this world first, spanning air, sea and land, in extreme conditions, this gig was not only a test of friendship but one of supporting each other too. I think they had a great laugh. The Ice Cold Gigs have become such a prominent feature for our JägerMusic programme and this year we really wanted to celebrate musicians giving back to the people who supported them from the very start; typically their best friends."
Like Jägermeister's 85-year-old secret recipe, plans like these do not come about overnight. The mammoth challenge of putting this incredible tribute to friendship together fell to Secret Compass, a professional expedition company whose Brand Projects team is adept at conceptualising and delivering multi-platform media projects of this nature in the world's wildest places. Faced with extreme modes of transport, freezing temperatures, high winds and rock stars, the team utilized strategic planning, the latest high tech equipment and sheer human endurance to capture the essence of the project.
Tom McShane, operations director, Secret Compass, commented: "From having to film from helicopters, skydiving, speedboats to huskies, this project was mammoth in the extreme. From looking after all the filming and audio kit in freezing temperatures, to co-ordinating the permissions to run a really complex project, and getting the logistics in place has been challenging to say the least, but like Jägermeister, we revel in breaking boundaries."
Jägermeister U.K., Secret Compass and Matt Tuck will be releasing a full length "making of" Ice Cold Gig documentary in April.