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ST 37

Psychedelic/Space Rock

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ST 37 High and Inside album cover
2.98 | 5 ratings | 4 reviews | 0% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 2010

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Maroons (6:07)
2. Grandpa's Birthday (11:39)
3. The White Comanche (2:16)
4. Borg9 (6:52)
5. The Saga Of Old Blue (7:02)
6. Breaking Lines (4:20)
7. The Burgeoning (5:50)
8. Just You (5:58)
9. Pamphlet Of Light (8:19)
10. If You Feel, You're Healed [Cow Head In The River] (9:48)

Total Time: 68:11

Line-up / Musicians

- Lisa Cameron / drums, percussives; fan and electronics (4,7), lead vocals (9)
- Joel Crutcher / guitars; lead vocals (3), electronics (4), organ (10)
- Bobby Baker / guitars, synare, backing vocals, organ & crickets (8), tape manipulation (10)
- SL Telles / bass, lead & backing vocals, tapes; electronics (4), tambourine (7)

guest musicians:
- Doug Ferguson / electronics (4,5)
- LeeAnn Cameron / backing vocals (8)
- Angela Begnaud / backing vocals (8)
- Nicole Telles / taped voice (2)
- Susie Vomit / tapes (2)

Releases information

CD Blue Circle GI90 (2010 US)

Thanks to TheGazzardian for the addition
and to Rivertree for the last updates
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ST 37 High and Inside ratings distribution

(5 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(0%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(0%)
Good, but non-essential (80%)
Collectors/fans only (0%)
Poor. Only for completionists (20%)

ST 37 High and Inside reviews

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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Rivertree
3 stars Some brand new output from this Austin/Texas based experimental rock project around Scott Telles. They are known for a dizzying discography, also including several CD-R, 7'', cassette and split productions, often released in very limited editions. In any case 'High And Inside' is another unpredictable piece of work featuring a distinctive bandwith. Although space rock remains to be the fundament again, they are drifting into multiple directions, sometimes really puzzling and demanding several listening sessions to acquire a taste for this stuff.

A floating behaviour and soaring guitars - right from the start they indulge us with the easy going cosmic track Maroons - a little warning though - you shouldn't feel too comfortable now after that. Don't know whose Grandpa is meant actually ... and what happened in the end ... too much alc or dope, eh? One of his parties must have got out of control probably .. and so the following Grandpa's Birthday evolves into an excentric acid jam, suddenly interrupted by some voice samples and ending with a delirious atmosphere. Now you ultimately are acquainted with the band's experimental approach.

Then ST 37 even refer to their roots with the garage/punk firecracker The White Commanche which leaves a sea of debris behind in some way.Borg9 evolves from this situation when expressing some kind of disorder where all common rules are called in question. The band designs a futuristic industrial mood here, coupled with spooky electronics. Furthermore the songs are bumping into straightforward heavy psych, fall back into a hallucinatory habitat here and there, are longing for the good old 60s psychedelia with the innocent Just You until they lift off to an extended weird space trip again including Pamphlet Of Light and If You Feel, You're Healed.

'High And Inside' literally implemented - they surely know how to act out their artistic freedom. Mostly off the beaten path - common melodic moments are rare. One or two may be willing to think that this is too much of a good thing - anyhow, lovers of avantgarde space rock provided with a noisy flavour will get their money's worth - promised. 3.5 stars!

Review by TheGazzardian
3 stars ST 37's latest release is an interesting one. It features a lot of psychedelic jam-outs, some more structured pieces, and a decent dose of humour.

In terms of more jam oriented music, I haven't heard a lot that I have liked yet. Jams can turn out to be really great, but they can also be long, aimless and sprawling - not aspects of music that I am a huge fan of. So to my ears, unless a jam is really good, it can easily sound like just noise.

Where I am going with this is that the more psychedelic instrumental pieces on this album, such as Maroons and Grandpas Birthday, are somewhat uneven. They can range from great to puzzling in a single track.

Fortunately, this album is by no means a one trick pony. It has quite a few tracks that, while still quite fuzzed out and psychedelic in nature, have a more composed sound to them, and are usually accompanied by vocals. These tracks are enjoyable, and hark back to the punk roots of the band.

One of the two tracks that really stand out to me, personally, on this album are Borg9. If the name reminds you of Revolution9, it should - but instead of the phrase "Number 9" being repeated, here it is a rather odd laugh track.

The other track is The Saga of Old Blue, a tale about a lawnmower that is made interesting simply because of the way it is told - a voice digitally treated to sound like its source is no longer in tip top shape, over some old-west guitar, retells the tale of this blue lawnmower and it's cat-like nine lives. It is quite a humour piece if you pay attention to the lyrics.

Overall, this album can be described as a little bit bizarre and uneven. It has some really interesting moments and some that just seem to wander. I'd recommend this more to those who like sprawling spaced out music, simply because there is a fair amount of that on this album, but if you're looking for an eclectic mix of adventurous music with a psych edge, this album is sure to have something for you.

Review by memowakeman
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Breaking lines, indeed!

It is my turn to review the newest (2010) album from this North American band called ST 37, who have released several productions since the latter eighties, when they were formed. The title of this album is "High and Inside", featuring ten songs and a total time of 74 minutes. My knowledge about them is actually pretty limited, but I can say that this album sound different in comparison to the "Future Memories" compilation, which is the other one I know.

The record kicks off with "Maroons" which starts very slowly, in fact it was difficult to me to enjoy it at first, I felt it tedious, but after some listens I could get used to it, the last part of the song is actually pretty interesting. "Grandpa's Birthday" is an eleven-minute composition, which is actually an instrumental jam that leads you to a trip, but warning, you can either enjoy it or skip it, it depends on your mood and how tolerant you are regarding these kinds of jams. After minute six there is a short stop where all of a sudden the music ends and voices appear, don't really understand why they did it, but it does not sound that bad. Then it finishes and the music returns stronger, though minutes later it slows down and share a sense of tranquility.

"The White Comanche" returns to the eccentric psychedelic sound that I knew from ST 37, this is a short but fast song with hints of Hawkwind and some punk moments. "Borg 9" is a pretty weird song which offers an atmosphere of tension as background, while as foreground some male laughs appear repetitively. The piece slows down but arises seconds later, and maintains that tension for all the almost seven minutes it lasts.

"The Saga of Old Blue" is another weird track with weird vocals, but this time I did not really like it, for me the vocals don't add anything positive this time. "Breaking Lines" is a song I like, it starts softly with a bass (or guitar?) and then becomes rockier, following the same path during all the four minutes, though it may sound repetitive, I like it.

"The Burgeoning" is a five-minute addictive track with some repetitive noises that could actually despair you, but in my case it did not happen, actually I felt like in hypnosis. "Just You" is a much calmer song that in moments actually sound like a 70s ballad, it has nothing to do with the previously known ST 37 sound.

"Pamphlet of Light" shares other experimental atmosphere(s) that lead you to a cosmic trip, the guitar work is pretty accurate here because it gives the different textures and along with vocals, provoke dark and strange images. The last song is also the longest one, with sixteen minutes of music, "If you feel you are healed (cow head in the river)" offers a lot of spacey moments, with some rockier ones complemented by the predominant psychedelic sound. In some passages one can feel that nervous sound made by the organ, which puts a special flavor to the music. The song is instrumental in its entirety, and in my opinion it resumes the sound of ST 37. There is a hidden track here that completes those 16 minutes.

This is a nice album, though in a couple of songs I lost the track and did not feel that interested, however if you like this kind of experimental and psychedelic music you will like it. My final grade is three stars.

Enjoy it!

Review by Conor Fynes
3 stars 'High And Inside' - ST 37 (5/10)

To the outsider, the great state of Texas generally brings to mind; images of cowboys, backyard barbecues, and an uncanny magnetism towards propane. From a region defined by it's inherent conservatism, it seems surprising that one of the United States' most prolific working psychedelic rock bands comes from the heart of the ranger state, the experimental jam group ST 37. With an expansive discography now spanning across four decades, the band has certainly proven their longevity and dedication to their music. Ringing in a new decade with their trademark lo-fi melange of psychedelic garage rock and jam experimentation, ST 37's 'High And Inside' is a suitable place to start with this band. As with much experimental music however, not all of the risks taken here pay off. 'High And Inside' opens with a lot of promise, with the spacey 'Maroons,' a mellow track that begs to be compared with early Pink Floyd. Swirling effects and light improvisation over a calm rhythm and some cerebral but warm vocals from bassist Scott Telles gives a very nostalgic psychedelic rock experience that excited me for everything that was to come afterwards. Unfortunately, very few of the other tracks here would share the same level of magic as is heard here, and six minutes into 'High And Inside,' it's biggest highlight is gone and past.

Perhaps ST 37's greatest weakness is their lack of consistency. While undoubtedly a band of fantastic chemistry and inspiration, (be it in the form of vision or controlled substance, we'll never know!) far too many of the tracks ultimately feel like they overindulge in their loose, noisy nature and as a result; fail to go anywhere. Such is the case with the second track 'Grandpa's Birthday,' which consists generally of eleven minutes of each member dabbling in his respective instrument, creating a chaotic but unfortunately listless sound.

Things pick up a bit again with 'The White Commanche,' which has an undeniable punk vibe to it, which works well with the low fidelity nature of the recording and production. Finishing shortly after it begins however, the album then leads into 'Borg9,' which really can't be summed up any better than as a 'laugh track.' Over the six minutes, the band uses a looped sample of laughter, slowly building underneath it, a layer of fuzz. By the end, the laughter has been tweaked to echo and reverberate nearly to the point of sounding like incomprehensible noise. The way the echo and delay use builds up gives them laugh track an increasingly frightening feel to it, simulating the effects of a bad LSD trip, which - as I might expect - is the goal of the band with this experimental loop.

Then comes what could easily be called the most memorable track on the album, although being far from the best. 'The Saga Of Old Blue' generally consists of a mellow country twang that affirms the band's heritage. Played overtop is a narration in a southern drawl, rambling about the misadventures of a Longhorn named 'Blue.' While the music in the background is pleasant enough and has a laid-back cheeriness about it, the song is defined by the narration, which while telling a generally uninteresting story about a Longhorn's journey through frontier America, the hospitable, almost old-timey nature of it really goes to show that despite not sounding like a Texas band at first listen, the culture of their state certainly works it's way into what they do.

'Breaking Lines' is a pretty straightforward hard rock song, sounding a bit like ZZ Top. While the song is a decently written rock song, it could easily have been better with a more polished production; the lo-fi effect may give some style for the more psychedelic moments of ST 37's work, but it only makes their more rock-oriented material sound rough and noisy. Following the straightforward rock is 'The Burgeoning,' which may be the most unnecessary track on the entire album. It essentially follows the same 'sound experiment' nature as much of their music, except it goes virtually nowhere in the process. Some weird electronic sounds droning on over an uneventful bass riff certainly doesn't endear.

After a noisy experimental piece that I would come to expect from the band, comes 'Just You,' a very surprising song that ditches a great deal of the dissonance for a ballad in the 1950's 'doo-wop' style. While it is pretty standard of what you might expect a 1950's rock ballad to sound like, there are some very nice vocal harmonies here and a weird organ lick towards the end that keeps the music sounding a bit quirky and strange.

The last two tracks almost feel to me as if they are connected; I usually don't realize that there is a new song playing when the tracks switch. This is in no small part due to the fact that while the flow of the album previously had a way of switching between the band's modes and styles, 'High And Inside' closes out with a pair of noise-heavy jams. This does leave the album on a bit of a sour note, because neither track really feels like it goes anywhere, instead feeling quite fuzzy and improvised.

While I do commend ST 37 for their uncompromising nature and their unique, quirky style, it does feel like this psychedelic band does some things a lot better than others. Having not lost a shred of the experimental vibe from their earlier work, the band will certainly polarize psychedelic rock audiences with their raw production, highly improvised performances, and heavy use of electronic sound. 'High And Inside' may be about as inconsistent as an album can get, but the album covers an incredible range of sound over the course of an hour. If not a great album, than certainly interesting!

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