WHITESNAKE guitarist Joel Hoekstra spoke to Juice FM about the band's upcoming album, "Flesh & Blood", which is now scheduled to arrive early next year. "That's all brand new original WHITESNAKE material — first one in a while — so the whole band is excited about that," he said.
"I don't know exactly which songs David [Coverdale, WHITESNAKE frontman] is gonna use yet, 'cause we recorded 18, so we'll see exactly what gets released and what order, but there's something there for everybody; all the classic WHITESNAKE elements are there."
According to Hoekstra, "Flesh & Blood" will include some songs that are "PURPLE-influenced, 'cause I think that WHITESNAKE has always had a DEEP PURPLE influence in the band. [And] there's some material that harkens back to the early days of WHITESNAKE, that's just kind of bluesy based, and there's some that sound a little bit more like what David refers to as the 'Geffen era' — the 'Slide It In', '87 album, 'Slip Of The Tongue' sound," he said. "And then there's some stuff there that's reminiscent of the most recent era, 'Good To Be Bad' and 'Forevermore', those records. And there's some stuff that's just what David even says is kind of brand new, uncharted territory for WHITESNAKE. So we'll see what he picks for the album. And hopefully there'll be something there for everybody; I really think there will be."
Hoekstra previously told the "Ouch You're On My Hair" podcast that "minor technical stuff" led to the decision to push back the projected release date of "Flesh & Blood" to 2019. "Obviously, to coordinate it with live dates, I think David thought probably it would be best if we wait until we're gearing out for the actual 'Flesh & Blood' tour next year," he said. "It is what it is. Trust me — all of us probably would have preferred to have it come out, but it's not unusual to have things go wrong, I guess, from time to time and set you back. So here we are."
Asked if he would agree with Coverdale's recent comment that "Flesh & Blood" is WHITESNAKE's best album ever, Joel said: "Honestly, I'd be insane to say something like that, because it's the first original album I've done with the band. Hey, man, we're just trying to make the best album we possibly can. I know David's really enthused about it; I think that's great that his enthusiasm is strong. But then again, I don't necessarily wanna put the ball on the tee for everybody to tear us apart if they have a favorite album over this current one. So it'll be what it'll be."
Hoekstra joined WHITESNAKE in 2014 following the departure of Doug Aldrich.
The Chicago native's résumé includes a long stint in NIGHT RANGER, as well as a gig as the touring guitarist for TRANS-SIBERIAN ORCHESTRA.
Coverdale recently told SiriusXM's "Trunk Nation" that "Flesh & Blood" "has all the necessary WHITESNAKE elements that I need to call it WHITESNAKE, but with a vibrant, fresh coat of paint." The record will mark the first time he has written with WHITESNAKE guitarists Reb Beach and Hoekstra. "The longest-standing member of WHITESNAKE, Reb Beach, [he and I had] never written together until this project," he said. "So it's a family affair. It really is cool. I'm very excited for people to hear it."
WHITESNAKE filmed a music video for a new song called "Shut Up & Kiss Me" on March 10. "It's a kick-ass song; you're gonna love it," Coverdale told "Trunk Nation". "But there's gonna some real fun elements paying respect and nod to WHITESNAKE's past, but certainly not as dark and as gritty as [WHITESNAKE's] 'Burn' video [from 'The Purple Album']."
WHITESNAKE recently embarked on the "Juke Box Heroes Tour" with FOREIGNER and Jason Bonham.