Label: Not Not Fun
The transcontinental collaboration of Arcata shoegaze abstractionist Brian Pyle and spectral Russian songstress Galya Chikiss began in Berlin, where the former was on tour and crashing with the latter, then finished in Northern California. Despite such distance, the duo’s debut feels symbiotic and seductive, shimmering nocturnal mirages of devotional drone and processional dub. Named after the site of certain of Chikiss’ formative teenage experiences (“trashy rooms with old anonymous TV sets and video recorders, a zone of freedom and new information”), Video Salon conjure a ghostly, glassy-eyed mood, low-lidded metronomes layered in haze, whispers, and dazed fluorescent static. Sung in Russian, the lyrics cast an ominous spell: “I turn around and see the door / the lock moves in my hand like a cold grey snake / your sharp talons tear apart my shadow.” An eerie and entrancing suite of electronic incantations by a complementary pair of exploratory expressionists.