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18.11.12

Joel Hoekstra

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Joel Hoekstra - Undefined - 2000 - Joel Hoekstra

"Hoekstra is bound to become a major name in the field of guitar-oriented instrumental music. Let him take his place among the greats; 'Undefined' proves he's earned that right." - Christopher Thelen, The Daily Vault

"'Undefined' is a positively breathtaking album. Yes, it's that good. Hoekstra probably won't be unknown for long."- Don Zulaica, Alternate Music Press

"Hoekstra is an ideal guitar hero for 2001. Undefined showcases the creativity of a truly unique artist with impeccable talent." - Carla Archuletta, IndiePerformer.com

"There are no weak songs. The only problem with this disc is that a follow-up will be hard to top. An extremely entertaining disc with dark melodies and monster musicians that combine on this powerhouse effort." - Randy Allar, The Music's Bottom Line

"Discs like this one make us still believe that guitar music is doing well. "Undefined" is the most interesting debut of recent years."- Piotr Nowicki, Gitara i Bas magazine

"I can't say enough about the ability of the players on this cd. If I had one word to describe this cd it would be HOT (note all caps)!" - Ted Viera, omniguitar.com

"Joel Hoekstra, clearly is the leader of the musical portraits that are conceived on Undefined. Clearly Joel has had a wide range of influences to mix with his great ears, training, and keen sense of writing. This is a cd that gets better with every listen." - MJ Brady, Prognosis

"Fans of high-end instrumental guitar music would do well to investigate both this CD and the man behind it. Wondering what the future of the electric guitar looks like? One listen to Undefined may provide a glimpse." - Mike O'Cull, chicagogigs.com
"Joel Hoekstra's debut album shows what the guy can do: play great guitar and write damn cool songs in every style you can think of. " - Max, Guitarist Heaven

"...really shows off Hoekstra's impressive chops and his ability to tweak out the blues with some crazy futuristic-yet-retro tones"- Mike Grimes, EXPOSE

Joel Hoekstra has come up with a collection of tracks that aim to make this album fall into the category of "Undefined" in your local music store. Though there is a definite thread of style that is woven through this album, Hoekstra is not easily pinned to one genre or style, and apparently likes it that way so that he is free to indulge in his wide-ranging musical fancies. Undefined squarely plants one leg in the realm of jazz fusion, but hops around with the other leg into a number of other musical styles resembling smooth jazz, progressive, instrumental rock, and sometimes just plain, goofy (though musically involved and entertaining) songs. But, Hoekstra is not contented by just staking his wide musical territory, and he is intent on proving his talent and capabilities in every venue that he ventures into. The album opens with a slew of tracks that establish the groove-based jazz / fusion foundation of the effort. The tracks present accessible themes, rhythms, and grooves that are accentuated by Hoekstra's savvy brand of soloing. The stream takes a diversion with the sixth track, "Gorilla Man 2000", that introduces a more hard-edged rock style with its crunching, distorted rhythms and instrumental rock-like guitar solos. This new dimension to the album is a pleasant surprise because it offers a new direction that adds scope to the overall concept. But, Hoekstra does not stop there. The next track, "Kill Swing", ventures further out into the realm of musical styles by incorporating into the album the swing jazz underpinnings that are highlighted by the aggressive, fusionoid guitar solos that immediately bring Scott Henderson to my mind. This track, "Kill Swing", seems to me to be the point in the album where Hoekstra really opens up and lets loose in a manner that makes you think he was holding back up until this point in the album. Now that he has grabbed your attention with his divergence from the low-keyed jazz / fusion that characterizes the early part of the album, Hoekstra continues on his boundary-stretching rampage with the next track, "Space Cowboy". "Space Cowboy" is a goofy, country / Western, finger-picking, cowboy jamboree that spoofs the old-time Chet Atkins guitar style with Western vocals. Though the song spoofs this type of Western, it actually pays an impressive tribute to the style of country / Western guitar work that it embraces and does so in a very entertaining way through the use of space-oid affects and the comical lyrics. The versatility demonstrated by "Space Cowboys" is reminiscent of Steve Morse's wide scope of styles. Hoekstra is able to continue his romp through the realm of musical styles with the track "Slide Tune" that brings yet another pleasant surprise to the album. This track features some very melodical and well-felt slide guitar work. The themes presented are really classy and addictively accessible with their upbeat and inspiring nature. The feel is that of a straight ahead rock song, though strictly instrumental and thankfully so because the instrumental music stands on its own. "Slide Tune" is my favorite track from the album and is good enough that it could receive radio airtime on a number of different venues. Sometimes you might listen to a new album where the musicians try to cover a wide array of styles to demonstrate their Steve Morse-induced need to prove their diverse capabilities. Once in a while, you will come across a new artist that is actually capable of pulling something like this off without seeming like an imitation, and, in fact, seems more like the genuine article. Hoekstra is the exception that can pull it off, and he has on Undefined. This guy is a the real deal and is worth checking out. If Virgil Donati thought this music was good enough to warrant his attention on the drums, this just might be an indication of the caliber of music that you will get on this album. It's not just good music here, it's good entertainment! © 2001 - 2003 Christopher Ruel. All Rights Reserved http://www.chrisruel.com/ChrisRuel.com/MusicReviews/JoelHoekstraReviews.htm

The core of the band is the trio of Joel Hoekstra on guitar, Virgil Donati on drums, and Ric Fierabracci on bass. Hoekstra's band has some credentials of note as Donati has played with Steve Vai and Fierabracci has played with Andy Summers. They're joined throughout the set by various guests on keyboards, saxophone, banjo, mandolin and harmonica. First a warning... this is an [almost] all instrumental GUITAR album! If you don't want to be assaulted from start to finish with mind blowing shred guitar then you should stay away. But if you love to have your face blown off by amazing guitar played with both passion and proficiency then step right this way. Hoekstra is clearly a child of 70's jazz fusion and he plays that style well. Having grown up with Return To Forever, Jeff Beck's Blow By Blow and Wired albums, and a whole host of jazz and funk artists, this brings back fond memories. In fact, one of my favorite albums of the era that the straight ahead fusion parts of the album remind me of is John Tropea's A Short Trip To Space, an album I still dust off from time to time. Actually the CD seems almost intentionally split into two parts, the first several tracks sounding like they're long lost 70's fusion classics, and the remainder of the set exploring heavier shred rock territory. "Electric Fields" is a beautiful 70's styled jazz-fusion tune that opens the set and introduces us to Hoekstra's killer guitar. I love Fierabracci's bass sound too... deep and smooth. Sounds like a fretless. But there are some heavier proggy moments as well. "Urban Experiments" and "Mad Bar" both feature cool funky jazz and nice soloing, and the former is embellished by freaky synth efx. "Homework" reminds me of the Barney Miller theme, but veers off into heavier rockin fusion territory. And "Corny" is a kick ass rockin fusion tune with healthy doses of funk. But starting with "Gorilla Man 2000", Hoekstra strays from his initial theme to crank out a searing rocker. The band is relentless and Hoekstra is a monster on the guitar. Seriously potent rock music with a fusion edge. "Plot In Motion" is the other heavy rocker on the album that grabbed me hard. But there's even more variety. "Kill Swing" is a good fun quirky rocking swing tune with, of course, Hoekstra's axe pyrotechnics at front and center stage. "Reflection" has kind of a spacey prog rock feel. "Slide Tune" is a light rock instrumental with parts that sound a bit like Brian May. "Afghanistan Blues" is a somber yet timely song. "Space Cowboy" is something of a novelty tune that I got a kick out of. And "Spank Me" is a Bluesy and seriously soulful song that WILL get you on your feet. In summary, I can see Joel Hoekstra's music appealing to guitar worshippers of many tastes. On the one hand I suppose he fits nicely in the Vai/Satriani/Eric Johnson school, but I find him far more varied and interesting than what I've heard from those musicians. But if anything I've described has aroused your curiosity, then you're unlikely to be disappointed. For more information you can visit the Joel Hoekstra web site at: http://www.joelhoekstra.com. Reviewed by Jerry Kranitz © Jerry Kranitz From Aural Innovations #20 (July 2002) http://www.aural-innovations.com/issues/issue20/hoekstra.html

Really good groove based instrumental jazz rock/fusion from the N.Y.C based guitarist, Joel Hoekstra. Listen to Joel's great "The Moon is Falling" album and buy his "13 Acoustic Songs" album [All tracks @ 224 Kbps: File size = 91.5 Mb]

TRACKS

1. Electric Fields (3:29)
2. Urban Experiments (3:58)
3. Mad Bar (4:17)
4. Homework (4:15)
5. Corny (4:51)
6. Gorilla Man 2000 (3:28)
7. Kill Swing (2:55)
8. Space Cowboy (3:23)
9. Reflection (3:28)
10. Slide Tune (3:58)
11. Plot in Motion (3:38)
12. Afghanistan Blues (5:13)
13. Spank Me (9:36)

All tracks composed by Joel Hoekstra except "Spank Me" by Joel Hoekstra (music, lyrics) & Cathy Richardson (lyrics)

MUSICIANS

Joel Hoekstra - Guitar
Ric Fierabracci - Bass
John Rice - Banjo, Mandolin
Chris Grove, Doug Ackman - Keyboards
Jay Cappo - Keyboards, Loops, Samples
Virgil Donati - Drums
Ken Partyka - Alto & Tenor Sax
Steve Graeber - Alto Sax
Howard Levy - Harmonica
Cathy Richardson - Vocals, Ass Slapping

SHORT BIO (WIKI)

Joel Hoekstra is an American guitarist currently in the band Night Ranger. The son of classical musicians, he started out playing cello and piano at a young age, but it was hearing Angus Young that inspired him to start guitar. He was raised in Chicago he has lived in New York City for over 10 years. When not touring with Night Ranger, he performs as a guitarist in the Broadway musical, Rock of Ages. He also made a cameo appearance alongside Sebastain Bach, Nuno Bettencourt, Kevin Cronin and Debbie Gibson in the big screen movie adaptation. Hoekstra also plays with Trans-Siberian Orchestra on their Winter tours. Joel has played on stage and in studio with Foreigner (band), Dee Snider, Jeff Scott Soto, Jim Peterik, The Turtles, Big Brother & the Holding Company and many more.

5 comments:

A.O.O.F.C said...

Click album cover on main blog.

Password is aoofc

daniel said...

Hola amigo ase tiempo que no entro a su blog
pero hoy que paso revisarlo la mando un muy
fuerte saludo.

A.O.O.F.C said...

Hola, Daniel. Espero que estés bien. Estoy muy ocupado estudiando en este momento por lo menos música para todos. Espero les haya gustado este álbum y habrá música mucho más pronto. Gracias como siempre, y voy a hablar con usted pronto .... P

antonio pacheco solis said...

please re up links fallen por faavor podrias volver a subirlo es un gran album

A.O.O.F.C said...

Hi Antonio. Sadly I do nothave original album to re-up. If you post a request in MESSAGE BOARD on this blog, I am sure you will get a reply! TY...Paul