Northern Haze (1985-2007, 2017-present): a Hard Rock band from Igloolik, Nunavut, Canada.
anadian rock music group Northern Haze started in Igloolik, Nunavut, the largest and most northern territory of Canada. Formed in 1984 by Kolitalik Inukshuk (guitar), Naisana Qamaniq (vocals), James Ungalaq (guitar), Elijah Kunnuk (bass) and John Inooya (drums), five musicians from Igloolik who had previously worked in various bands since the 1970s. Along with guest members Ed Bimm on synthesizer and Randall Prescott on harmonica, the band would release their self-titled 1985 debut album, recorded on the 'CBC Northern Service Broadcast Recording' label owned by the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation - state owned national broadcast service). Featuring a popular hard rock sound, the recording would not only be the first indigenous-language rock album recorded ever in Canada, but may be the first ever recorded in North America. Today, the album has become extremely valuable and rare.
The band would then play several festival dates in support of their debut, including Folk on the Rocks and Expo 86. For many years there-after they disappeared back north to play concert dates in Canadian Arctic communities, but could not afford to record a followup album, managing only a handful of individual singles; the cost too prohibitive in remote arctic communities (many accessible only by plane or ice road).
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In 2007, the band broke up after the deaths of Kunnuk and Inukshuk.
Independent label 'Supreme Echo Records' released Sinaaktuq (2012), a compilation of the original album and the aforementioned singles.
In 2017 'Aakuluk Music', the record label owned and operated by another Nunavut-based band, The Jerry Cans, reissued the 1985 album. With new members Derek Aqqiaruq and Allan Kangok, Siqinnaarut would be released in 2018, some 33 years after the debut.
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