Joel Hoekstras 13
Title:Dying To Live
Label:Frontiers Music sr
Release Date:16th October
Joel Hoekstras 13 is a side project involving some of the best Hard Rock and Heavy Metal musicians to have graced the stages of the world.
Joel is known for his guitar mastery with Whitesnake , Trans Siberian Orchestra, NightRanger ,and Rock of Ages he returns with a Classic Rock album that features many star names but essentially “Dying To Live” is all Joel's work, hes written the lyrics, done all the Musical and Lyrical arrangements , and invited friends to perform on his masterpiece.
Having previously only released instrumental Albums Joel's thrown in a huge curve ball with this release and come out trumps! He has not just one vocal legend but two involved namely Jeff Scott Soto (Journey/Malmsteen) and Russell Allen from (Adrenaline Mob/Symphony X), he has also acquired the majestic and stunning services of drumming legend Vinnie Appice (ex Dio, Black Sabbath) , Tony Franklin (ex The Firm /Blue Murder) on Bass ,and a lineup of huge proportions making appearances though out this eleven track triumph.
”Say Goodbye To The Sun” opens the album with its heavy chugging riffs and Russell Allen's vocals shake the foundations with Good time Hard Rocking delirium which continues on “Anymore”.
“Until I left You “ sees Jeff Scott Soto on Vocals and is one of many highlights on here with its telling lyrics that capture your attention ,and groove into your consciousness.
A vibe of Foreigner washes over you on the “Long For The Days”. “Scream” has some tasty keyboarding from Derek Sherinian that combine magnificently with Hoekstras chugging and rifftastic playing.
“Never Say Never” thunders , rocks , and rolls with it's captivating solo , and Appices drums kicking up a storm of harmonious entrapment.
“Changes” reminds me so heavily of Foreigner , in fact it really could have come from any Foreigner Album , which in itself is not a bad thing , with a woah , woah chorus its an uplifting , upbeat tune ,pleasing , and invigorating.
“The Only Way To Go” is something else with its hard hitting riffs totally surprising you as it reaches over halfway with a complete change in tempo for a brief acoustic flamenco interlude , its an absorbing track as are all on here and no more so than the title track Dying to Live' where Joel focuses on struggles, potential pitfalls , and the art of overcoming obstacles in life to finally arrive where you are meant to be.
It’s a scorching heavy tune ,with doom laden riffs ,for me this is the standout song on the album. “Start Again” smacks of Eighties good time Hard Rocking cruising along Route 66. Final song “What We Believe” is a duet with Chloe Lowery and Jeff Scott Soto both members of Trans Siberian Orchestra , it’s a fabulous ballad , and a superb finish to the Album.
To sum up “Dying To Live” it is a captivating ,uplifting ,joyous release to please and appease fans of Melodic Rock , and in my humble opinion ranks as one of the top must have Melodic Rock Albums released in 2015 to date.
• Bonus Track Kill or Be Killed on Digital Download
Review: Seb Di Gatto Score:10/10
Joel Hoekstra (Whitesnake) - guitars, backing vocals
Jeff Scott Soto (Journey/Yngwie Malmsteen) - lead vocals, backing vocals
Russell Allen (Adrenaline Mob/Symphony X) - lead vocals, backing vocals
Vinny Appice (Black Sabbath/Dio) - drums
Tony Franklin (The Firm/Blue Murder) - bass
special guest musicians:
Derek Sherinian (Dream Theater/Black Country Communion) - keyboards
Chloe Lowery (Trans Siberian Orchestra) - vocals
Toby Hitchcock (Pride of Lions) - additional backing vocals
Charlie Zeleny (Joe Lynn Turner) - percussion
Dave Eggar (Amy Lee/Coldplay) – cello
Tracklisting: Facebook Website
1.Say Goodbye To The Sun
3.Until I Left You
4.Long For The Days
6.Never Say Never
8.The Only Way To Go
9.Dying To Live
11.What We Believe