pale rider
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pale rider

Nashville, Tennessee, United States | INDIE

Nashville, Tennessee, United States | INDIE
Band EDM Reggae


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Pale Rider
Listen Keenly
Cassava Outernational CD

Reviewed by Steve Barker

Phase Selector Sound emerged out of Nashville in a dubwise cloud back in 1996, working with ROIR out of NYC and the late lamented BSI out of Portland, Oregon. Lately they have been dormant, but member Craig Allen is now releasing music under the name Pale Rider, including the recent 12" "Selassie"/"Electrocute A Soundboy", which is well worth searching out. The set starts with two treatments of "Full Up", better know as "Pass The Kouchie", one a sound system shout-out, the other ("Kouchie Dub") distinguished by a lovely plangent vibes overly while all sorts of explosions are running off the board. The rest of the tunes seque through with effects firing through the mix, and although this device may seem a little familiar, it's really well executed here. - The Wire


Saddest - Look Youth Man; Pale Rider - Dubbing Youth Man / Pale Rider - No Time To Gaze; Pale Rider - Want To Go To Zion (COLORED VINYL)   Cassava Outernational  2009
Pale Rider - Listen Keenly   Cassava Outernational  2008
Pale Rider - Selassie; Electrocute A Soundboy / See Them; O Lord   Cassava Outernational  2007

with Phase Selector Sound:
Essential Dub (Comp) ◄ (2 versions) Jackson Park ROIR (Reachout International Records) 2007
The Sound Of Tblclths (7")   Lush Records (3) 2003
Dub After Time: A Look Back At BSI Records (CD) Sky Cup BSI Records 2003
Babylon Is Ours - The USA In Dub (CD, Album) Warrior Style Select Cuts 2003
Docking Sequence: BSI Compilation Vol. 1 (CD, Comp) Sky Cup BSI Records 2000
Disassemble Dub ◄ (2 versions)   ROIR (Reachout International Records) 1999

Radio airplay for Pale Rider music:
Jammin' Reggae Virtual Radio / San Diego, CA
KBCS / Seattle, WA
KFAI / Minneapolis, MN
KGLP / Gallup, NM
KGNU / Fountain, CO
KPSU / Portland, OR
KRUA / Anchorage, AK
KTHX / Reno, NV
KUSP / Santa Cruz, CA
KZYX & KZYZ / Ft. Bragg, CA
WAPS / Akron, OH
WAWL / Chattanooga, TN
WCBN / Ann Arbor, MI
WCDB / Albany, NY
Westcott Radio / Syracuse, NY
WFSK / Nashville, TN
WNCW / Spindale, NC
WPRK / Orlando, FL
WRIU / Wakefield, RI
WRUW / Maple Heights, OH



Listen Keenly is the next step forward in dubwise music for Pale Rider, former bassist, guitarist and remix engineer for Phase Selector Sound (a dub duo that released music on ROIR, BSI Records, Select Cuts [Germany], and Lush Records [Sweden]).

Phase Selector Sound was called "American Dub in full, brilliant effect" by XLR8R and "Dub to the max in the tradition of King Tubby … as good as the majors" by Chuck Foster of The Beat. Steve Barker of Wire remarked that "... the open attitude that (PSS) brings to the process of building the nu-roots tunes is encouraging … they are ideally placed to explore some of its hidden connections with reggae."

While Pale Rider's work with Phase Selector Sound was very reverent of classic dub a la King Tubby and Lee "Scratch" Perry (and very much influenced musically by Roots Radics), he has now begun to realize a more idiosyncratic vision of dub that is very personal and highly creative, much as Keith Hudson and Glen Brown each carved out their own unique take on the genre that sounded like no one else.

"Listen Keenly," is the second release on Cassava Outernational records, based in Nashville, Tennessee. The CD features nine dubwise tracks in an unorthodox format for dub: a seamless mix with overdubbed sound effects. Pale Rider remarks: "The idea is to bridge the gap between dub fans and reggae fans by presenting dub in a reggae mix cd format. As a reggae DJ and promoter, I always book dances with a diverse lineup of selectors, a mix of Caribbean-based and American DJs. I love all kinds of reggae, and I love to introduce roots and dub fans to bashment and vice versa. The CD opens with a dub plate on a classic dancehall riddim, segues into a pretty traditional dub and then moves into more experimental stuff."

He is understandably passionate about his working methods as well: "I don't deal with computer fuckery anymore. I find it makes a lot of neo-dub sound safe and boring. I stay away from preset sounds and I dislike staring at a computer screen, endlessly tweaking shit. I have to get my hands on the mix – I'll never be King Tubby or Prince Jammy but they are the masters – like jazz musicians whose instruments happened to be mixing boards."

All tracks were produced, arranged and remixed by Pale Rider. They were then tested in dub's original setting: a reggae dance: "Creating music in your studio is fine, and can be nice for people listening on headphones, but a sound system setting really lets you know if a track is working."

The first track features Mr. Easy on a Pale Rider dubplate, adapting the lyrics from his hit tune "Strangest Things" over an updated version of the "Pass the Kouchie" rhythm. The second track, a dub, is also on Pale Rider's "Kouchie" re-cut, while tracks three through nine are original compositions that get progressively more psychedelic while staying very much within the genre of dub.

"Listen Keenly" is the followup release to Pale Rider's debut 12" 45 RPM "Selassie / Electrocute a Sound Boy / See Them / O Lord" from 2007 (Cassava Outernational), distributed by Ernie B's Reggae.