Witchrider: Unmountable Stairs

Scuzzy psych-stoner debut LP from heady Austrians.

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Not actual riders of witches, Witchrider do, however, ride the current tide of Queens Of The Stone Age-esque rock. Another day in new band promo world, another glut of fresh-faced acts compared to QOTSA/Foo Fighters/Eagles Of Death Metal.

Such comparisons can mean fuck all in the grand scheme of things, but when a band has a characterful take on this high-class influence meat – as this Austrian lot have done – it’s a pretty cool thing. Unmountable Stairs – while tremendously indebted to Homme, Grohl and all who sail in them – operates on a pleasingly exotic level, infused with psych-stoner sensuality.

OCD makes a commanding opening statement of uptempo mystique, and in Witch Hunt their knack for fuzzed, alt.rock grooves is paired with haunting smoke and storytelling. An assured first effort; heavy and darkly quirky./o:p