ST 3 7 was formed in January 1987 as a merger of sorts between Austin cult bands Tulum and the Elegant Doormats. Bassist S.L. Telles has been active in the Texas music underground since singing with Houston teen punkers Vast Majority in '79-'80, releasing a single on Wild Dog records that has since been reissued several times, including outtakes. Telles formed the Elegant Doormats in spring 1982 with original ST 37 drummer John Foxworth (who later joined Tulum). The group endured for five years, playing with bands like the Butthole Surfers and the Reivers, and recording with legendary God of Hellfire Arthur Brown.
Guitarist Joel Crutcher and vocalist Carlton Crutcher founded Tulum in 1985, and recorded for Rabid Cat records before that label disintegrated. Jello Biafra wrote, "The bizarre side of Austin is still alive - first the Buttholes, then Scratch Acid, and now Tulum."
After recruiting Jon Torn (son of Rip; from the band Thanatopsis Throne) on keyboards, ST 37 began playing out in April of 1987 at the Cave Club with the Def MFs (still called Def MCs at that point). The stage was set right away when Telles informed the crowd that if they didn't like it they could leave.
The band released the cassette EP "billygoat nothinghead" late in the year, and thus began a string of cassette only releases.
ST 37 made their vinyl debut in 1990 on the Noiseville Records sampler, "From Twisted Minds Come...," and the 7" single, "Look at yr Chair," followed soon afterward. Lance Farley replaced Foxworth on the drum throne at this point and Shane Shelton took over from Torn on the keyboard duties.
Live shows continued unabated, with ST 37 organizing the Noisefests at Waterloo Park featuring bands like Ed Hall, Seemen, Crust, Liquid Mice, Pocket FishRmen, Coz the Shroom, Squat Thrust, etc.