Canadian rock duo Crown Lands’ latest music video for their single “End of the Road” pays a cinematic tribute to the missing and murdered Indigenous womxn, girls, and Two-Spirits along Yellowhead Highway 16 in B.C., known as the Highway of Tears. According to Statistics Canada, between 2001 and 2015, Indigenous womxn’s homicide rate was six times higher than for non-Indigenous women. Last year, an inquiry called the crisis a genocide.
Lead vocalist and drummer Cody Bowles, who is half Mi’kmaw, expresses the desire to show allyship with the video, describing it as “an outcry for awareness and action surrounding the colonial horrors.” The five-minute video features sweeping drone shots of the highway, with an opening narration by Canadian Inuk singer Tanya Tagaq speaking on the crisis. “The missing are our matriarchs, our queens, our kin, our givers of life,” she says in the video. “We owe them answers.”
A cast of Indigenous dancers represent the souls of the missing and murdered womxn, wearing red dresses—inspired by the REDress Project—that offer a stark contrast to the white snow along the highway. The dance is choreographed by Mi’kmaw artist Teineisha Richards, who says of her process: “I wanted to express the desperate feeling of someone fighting to escape, but with no redemption… I aimed to generate a sense of self-empowerment and unity within a shared struggle by my use of staccato, aggressive, and synchronized movement during the group sections of choreography.”
Watch “End of the Road” here:
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