Joel Hoekstra’s 13 is a supergroup (sorry, we’re calling it that!) comprised of former Black Sabbath and Dio drummer, Vinny Appice, Symphony X and Adrenaline Mob singer Russell Allen, bassist Tony Franklin (whose credits are exhaustive) and keyboardist Derek Sherinian (Sons of Apollo, ex-Dream Theater) in addition to the Whitesnake guitarist for which the band is named after. A music video for “Finish Line” has just been released and it should greatly appeal to fans of ripping ’80s metal and stomping melodic rock.
What’s best about this song, which leads the band’s Running Games album due Feb. 12, is that it’s never egregiously overstepping its obvious nods to so many elements headbangers love about arena-enthused heavy music. There’s a little bit of that same feeling you get when you hear the chorus to Journey‘s “Separate Ways (Worlds Apart)” and it’s great to hear the muscle-armed Appice back in the saddle, pounding away with that unmistakable thunder.
Some similarities to classic Dio riffs are also a heartwarming way to ensure Ronnie‘s memory and music lives on.
“Years ago, I released three solo albums that were mainly instrumental guitar music. With Joel Hoekstra’s 13, I have started to work on something that showcases my production, writing, and playing in the genre that I’m known for, which is melodic hard rock,” said Hoekstra, who has also enjoyed time in Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Cher, and Night Ranger, of his ambitions.
Of the song and the diversity of the album, the guitarist added, “Like ‘Dying to Live,’ ‘Running Games’ can be described as Dio’ish at it’s heaviest, but also is influenced by the blues- based sound of Whitesnake as well as melodic bands like Foreigner, Journey. ‘Hard to Say Goodbye’ definitely represents the more melodic sound of the album, but rock fans can also look forward to some aggressive tracks.”
Pre-order Running Games, which will be released through Frontiers Music SRL, here and watch the video for “Finish Line” below. See the album art and track listing further down the page as well.
Joel Hoekstra’s 13, “Finish Line” Music Video
Joel Hoekstra’s 13, Running Games Album Art + Track Listing
01. “Finish Line”
02. “I’m Gonna Lose It”
03. “Hard to Say Goodbye”
04. “How Do You”
05. “Heart Attack”
07. “Lonely Days”
08. “Reach the Sky”
09. “Cried Enough for You”
10. “Take What’s Mine”
11. “Running Games”
12. “Lay Down Your Love” (Bonus Track – Digital)