In the year since Tiesto released his first Club Life compilation, he has grown from dance music’s biggest name to something much larger: a true household name with a radio station, clothing line, and cross-country college tour. (Not to mention a hugely successful web series, and a headphone line…) Naturally, then, the stakes were far higher for the mix’s much-hyped second edition; Club Life Volume Two needed to satisfy a larger and more diverse swath of fans, with accessible remixes for newer, Top 40-leaning listeners and exciting new collaborations for longtime EDM fanatics.
In true Tiesto fashion, he makes this difficult DJing task look easy. Club Life Volume Two: Miami is a perfect ode to the city and his loyal fans. The mix deftly sets the tone for what we’ll be hearing from Tiesto this year: a range of collaborations — he works with Swanky Tunes and Wolfgang Gartner on the album — and remixes with mainstream appeal, all with big, stadium-ready drops.
Club Life Volume Two opens much like Volume One, with an intro that sets the stage for the aural journey to come. In the full mixed version of the set opens with the hypnotic, ethereal sounds of “Miami” before the first true track of the album: “Chasing Summers.” Tiesto has been opening with it lately — most notably at his Ultra Music Festival set — and I kind of get chills every time I hear it. It screams summer and happiness and all things good in the world. This is Tiesto music at his best, and I just love the juxtaposition of obvious building synths with the uncharacteristically hard drop that serves as a perfect transition into the next track of the album.
When you’re in the game as long as Tiesto it can be hard to keep up with what’s hot, but he has demonstrated his ability to remain at the forefront of music time and again. In its entirety, Club Life Volume 2: Miami is an excellent representation of not only Tiesto’s sound, but the current pulse of EDM in the year 2012. There’s a mix of new and old, easy-listening and harder style, vocals and instrumentals, and good and… less good.
In the same way that Volume 1 was a mix split up into tracks, so is Volume 2, a true “compilation” meant to be listened to all at once to grasp the big picture. That’s the best way to listen to it the first time around, but most of the tracks stand equally on their own. Tiesto is one of the biggest names in the EDM game, and it’s appropriate that his Club Life Volume 2: Miami release is equally enormous.