JAG PANZER will issue a self-produced DVD in early April. As-yet-untitled, the DVD is being billed by the band as “one of the first (if not the first) 'underground' metal DVDs” ever released. According to a lengthy interview with guitarist Mark Briody posted at the band's official web site at www.jagpanzer.com, “there are currently a few metal DVDs available, so we are obviously nowhere near the first to market. However these are typically packaged and marketed by the record company, there is not much 'band input' into the creative video or DVD authoring process. I have nothing against this process and some of these metal DVD's are very cool. However, I am a product of the old school metal scene, especially the NWOBHM era. Back then a band's own identity was all over the releases. Every album had its own unique sound and look. Each album captured the unique personality of the band. To me, this was one of the factors that made that metal scene fantastic.
“I've been an avid DVD collector for years, and I've often wondered, 'Can the principles of the NWOBHM era be applied to a DVD? Can a band release its own DVD?' I felt strongly that we could. So strongly that I produced a DVD prototype in January 2002. A DVD was authored and 10 copies were sent to Century Media [Records] and some other metal folks whose opinion I trust. The response was very positive. Century Media was interested in a release, but not until 2003. This would not work for me. I've always felt that an omission in the marketing of the band is that few people are aware of that fact that we are a very technology-oriented band. Yet our music is strongly rooted in the traditions of metal. And with this style of music often comes an unfair stereotype.
“I hear the stereotype often - old burned out guys playing old music, simple music, nothing new, nothing cutting edge. It's unfortunate that a band cannot be judged solely by the music they play, but that's the way it is. So I challenge that stereotype. I know of no band that approaches our level of pre-production for a release. Our live click system is unparalleled in its function and simplicity. We've had a web site up since 1994. Even the machines we use to record on were built by us.
“I've always felt that good metal is the finest music in the world, yet it gets unnoticed because it's viewed as not being 'cutting edge'. So I want to show the world that it doesn't take a techno band to do something as sophisticated as release a DVD. Yes, the 'dumb' metalheads have figured out bit-rate calculations, field rendering order, non-linear editing, green screens and all the other fun things that come with producing professional video content.
“It was a lot of work producing the DVD, but I had a great time doing it and it was a good learning experience. I certainly understand Century Media's position on releasing the DVD on a later date. The DVD market for heavy metal is still in its infancy. But to me it was very important to get the DVD out early, so we don't become 'just another band doing a DVD'. So we worked out a compromise. We will create and produce a limited run of the DVD ourselves. This release is for North America only. Century Media may release the DVD (or parts of the content) in Europe, but I don't know of any specific plans. The DVD may also appear as a release in North America on Century Media some time in the future. But again, I don't know of any specific plans.”