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

Polly Glass
Deputy Editor, Classic Rock

Polly is deputy editor at Classic Rock magazine, where she writes and commissions regular pieces and longer reads (including new band coverage), and has interviewed rock's biggest and newest names. She also contributes to Louder, Prog and Metal Hammer and talks about songs on the 20 Minute Club podcast. Elsewhere she's had work published in The Musician, delicious. magazine and others, and written biographies for various album campaigns. In a previous life as a women's magazine junior she interviewed Tracey Emin and Lily James – and wangled Rival Sons into the arts pages. In her spare time she writes fiction and cooks.