High In The Mountain

by Stephen Sciulli

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ElectricBananaClub.net Incredible mastery of multiple instruments, creating a whole new musical genre in the process. Essential listening. Favorite track: Love Horses.
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High in the Mountain

Stephen Sciulli
Country music from a imaginary country.
Root-tronic music of the Elements.

Stephen is based in the upper reaches of Allegheny County Pennsylvania in a very small rural farming and fracking community.

Dobro (resonator guitar) and lap steel guitars are mixed with electronics, banjo, accordions, flutes and Irish whistles; creating atmospheres and textures that evoke dream-states and other-worldly environments. Earth-based sounds, reflect the mysteries of early evening in the mountains and deeply-wooded hideaways.

Two years in the making, Stephen plays over a dozen instruments, about half of which he had never played before. Literally teaching himself banjo, dobro and dulcimer (among others) as he learned to perform his original songs.

"I play all the instruments on the album. If I didn't own the instrument, I borrowed, rented or bought it. After learning the basics, I'd teach myself my own song. It was about a two year process. I found this to be a very interesting approach...I hope enjoy the result."

Stephen's musical history is long and varied. Starting in the late 1970’s with the seminal Pittsburgh progressive rock band Carsickness. He then founded the Irish rock group Ploughman’s Lunch. Later Stephen formed the sound healing/meditation duo Life In Balance.

For over 14 years Stephen toured the country with Life In Balance, producing numerous sound healing CDs featuring electronically-processed Japanese Shakuhachi. Each release expanding the listener-focused experience by creating trances and hypnotic states with lush sound environments.

Currently a member and songwriter for the musical duo Standing Wave, the group centers their musical intention by creating intelligent Americana intwined with world-dance experiences.

Reviews: "I compare his voice to Waylon Jennings crossed with Ian Curtis of Joy Division. I mean it as a high compliment. I think it's fantastic! The first thing that comes to mind is "Acid Country" but that doesn't quite capture it. Haunting, hypnotic, funny. MAGNIFICENT."
-Jim Dauterive, the mastermind behind King of the Hill and Bob's Burgers.

“Is it too early to proclaim this the album of the year? With this album Stephen advances folk music to, as we say in Pittsburgh, "a whole nother level." There's not a single immemorable melody or misplaced note throughout these 11 songs.
My favorites, for what it's worth: "Driftwood Maps" with its sweet-sounding steel guitar melody; "Head Cleaner," a dobro instrumental with interesting percussion; "Love Horses" a genuinely fun tune with tempo shifts, stops and starts, steel guitar blasts, and an array of electronic sounds that sometimes give the impression of an engine on its last legs grinding the song to a halt and starting it up again; "Disintegration is Painless" and the relaxing, heartfelt "Willow Water," an instrumental with dobro and wind instruments.
One of my favorite authors, the late Albert Cossery, once defended his lazy lifestyle by declaring laziness a virtue, stating that if one works too hard, one isn't taking the time to enjoy the works of many artists and musicians to whom God gave talent for us to enjoy. For Stephen to come up with this concept, master so many musical instruments, and so fully realize his artistic vision, I have to think that he was one of the folks that Cossery was talking about.
-Amazon review from Electric Banana Joe


released February 13, 2017

This album is self-produced. All music, lyrics, instruments, mixing and recording by Stephen Sciulli.

Thank you to Inga Jensen, Standing Wave, Paul Ferraro, Bob Grealish, Dennis Childers, Life In Balance and to all the local Rustic Dandies who put up with me over the last two years as I pulled this album together.



all rights reserved


Stephen Sciulli Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Stephen is based in the upper reaches of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania in a very small rural farming community.

Dobro, banjo and lap steel guitars are mixed with electronics to create atmospheres and textures evoking dream-states and other-worldly environments.

Earth-based sounds reflect the mysteries of early evening in the mountains and deeply wooded areas.
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Track Name: Driftwood Maps
Driftwood Maps
By Stephen Sciulli

If you see me in the river would you let me drown?
Undeserving having suffered in this sleeping town.

Driftwood maps in beaten hands the young are dying old.
Walking out of your house at night to sleep on a bed of stone.

Moonlit-nights and sun-filled days these wounds will never heal.
Hidden treasures in sunken vessels turn to dust when they’re revealed.

Take her hand and watch her shatter there’s nothing you can say.
Wear the bruises like battle badges that never go away.

If you see me in the river would you let me drown?
Undeserving having suffered in this sleeping town.

Driftwood maps in beaten hands the young are dying old.
Walking out of your at night to sleep on a bed of stone?
Track Name: Watched You Bleed Out
Watched You Bleed Out / Deep Inside You
By Stephen Sciulli

I watched you bleed out in the cold clear water;
saw your spirit rise deep into mother sky.
I carried your soul down to the burned out pines.
Now the seasons changed within you.
All time disappeared.

In the valley they’ll never find me,
blending in the shade of a juniper tree.
I’ve gone further than you’ve ever dreamed.
Now the seasons changed within you.
Lost forever in memory.

Making tools with the whirling wind.
Moved in circles, leave no trace in the clay.
Stand between the sun and the moon.
Casting spells to ease your pain.

Throwing stones into the wishing well;
as all light fades, as all light fades, as all light fades back into you.

Close your eyes.
Relax your mind.
Just go deep inside you.
Track Name: Love Horses
Love Horses
By Stephen Sciulli

She lives in the field where the corn grows so tall.
Lines on her face and dirt on her hands.
I wish I could walk with her, but she’s part of this field again.
Even the horses won't come out of this rain.

We love our horses – horses - We love horses – horses

The evening sun silhouettes her body through her silken dress.
Magic in the land and we know how to make it grow.
Pulls off her dress and walks barefoot through the mud.
Leaves the barn doors open for me.

We love our horses – love horses - horses – love horses

She weaves a tale by the fire in the night.
October is grey with a spell of snow from out of the north.
She cuts off all her hair in the autumn moonlight.
Writing symbols on the barn doors for me.

We love our horses – We love horses – horses
Track Name: Once We Lived
Once We Lived
By Stephen Sciulli

Once we lived in the ethers.
Once we lived in the sea.
Now we live here in Pittsburgh;
soon we’ll have to leave.

Find we’re all connected.
Let's go explore the stars,
Out in all directions...
didn’t even have to go far.
Track Name: Disintergration Is Painless
Disintegration Is Painless
By Stephen Sciulli

I believe I’ve seen her floating by
in the youngest wave of light.
Awoke from drowning, she walks away from the sea
approaching the observatory.
This is where they once agreed to meet.

Moving closer like an unnamed star.
The telescope shows decades of neglect.
The dome is cracked and vines grow around once shiny brass;
this is not how she remembers it at all.
Feels like she’s walking without feet, in an invisible world.

Those aren’t clouds, those are ghosts in the sky.
Nothing is as she remembers it.
Invisible and secret things are revealed
in the filtered light from the trees.
She tells the clouds about the observatory.

Feels a presence moving closer,
it’s who she’s been waited for.
A distant echo hidden in her existence
willing to drink in every flame.

He’s wearing tattered battle clothes.
He doesn’t touch the slippery earth.
Two souls unite and find power in being everywhere.
They designed this world to suit their existence.

Oh my sweet love where’d you get the awful gash?
She reaches to touch the hole in his side.
No longer tethered he looks surprised
as the sun arched across the morning sky.

He disintegrates and disappears before her eyes.
The wind picks up – she wishes she could cry.
Track Name: High in the Mountain
High in the Mountain
By Stephen Sciulli

Scattered sunlight. We’re high in the mountain.
Making a pathway to the water daughter.
She sends us her seeds. Wraps them in grass.
Says, “Plant these in circles, that will always last."

This is how we look at the world.
This is what we remember.
This is how we looked at the world.

The land was hard, so we took to the river.
The light was fading; moving slow on the water.
Entrained in darkness, rose the insect choir.
Of all these things, all this things we must never speak of.

This is how we looked at the world
This is what we remembered.
This is how we looked at the world.

So we arrived at the camp of the fortuneteller.
The fire was already cold. The graves were already dug.
We unwrapped the seeds; throw them in the dark graves.
They landed in circles, completing this cycle.

This is how we looked at the world
This is what we created.
This is how we looked at the world.

So no one remains to nurture these seedlings,
still they grow fertile by the granite portal.
In the struggling ray of this waning moon,
I see graves and tombs, both real and imagined.

I never said that I was part of this visible world.
And I never said that I dwelt here alone.
Always part of you here.
Come with me, take my hand...