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as of 12/02/2020 (Details)
Tiesto, one of the world's most popular DJs, tries to broaden the playing field with his second artist record Just Be. Mostly self-written (except for the BT collaboration "Love Comes Again" and a remix of Samuel Barber's "Adagio For Strings"), his disc goes for transcendence right from the start with an earnest, uplifting string arrangement on "Forever Today." He keeps reaching, alternating dense-but-danceable new material with a few recent remixes ("Nyana" and "Traffic"), and vocalist Kirsty Hawkshaw provides a blissful vocal on the soaring "Walking On Clouds." Yet dance floor Nirvana stays well out of range. By focusing so heavily on trying to evolve, Tiesto neglects his bread and butter: the build. Live, crowds froth at the mouth for his next beat to drop, and while that hot energy is not necessarily the goal here (check 2003's mix record Nyana for that), a better flow would help this record considerably. Though offering ready-to-remix parts, the whole of Just Be is too impatient to sound deep and forgets to let the peaks come naturally. --Matthew Cooke
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