Back in the day, everybody loved a good MTV contest. Of the more outlandish ones, the network hosted an intimate concert by the band Korn for a small audience of contest winners and soldiers on leave from the Middle East… on a plane!
In 2005, Korn had just released their See You On The Other Side album. Looking for interesting ways to promote the album, the band teamed up with MTV and set about becoming the first band to perform to a live audience in the clouds.
Sounds kinda weird, right? It really is. The nü-metal giants, crammed into a claustrophobia-inducing space with barely functional gear, performed a short set including “Blind,” “Here To Stay,” “Freak On A Leash” and “Falling Away From Me” while they flew over Iceland and Greenland.
Footage of the event was eventually included on the DVD Korn: Live On The Other Side, which also contained video from their show at New York’s Hammerstein Ballroom on November 29th 2005, which the attendees of the plane set were flown over from London for. The gig marked Korn’s first headline concert in the US since guitarist Brian “Head” Welch left the band earlier in the year.
Korn frontman Jonathan Davis told MTV in 2006: “We were just happy to be playing again and it was a really good show. It’s where we debuted [songs from See You on the Other Side] and it was shot in hi-def.”
The singer went on to explain the outlandish gear that Korn had to use in order to perform on the plane, saying: “We used battery-powered practice amps, David [Silveria] played this little drum set for a kid. We could only set up in the bulkhead, so I had to hide behind some seats and I sang through the PA of the airplane.”
Reckoning with the departure of Head, 2005 was a difficult but important year in Korn’s career. Upon its release on December 6th of that year, See You On The Other Side debuted at number 3 on the Billboard charts and remained for 34 weeks. It was the last Korn record to feature drummer David Silveria, who left the band a year later. Head and Korn reconnected in 2012.