As a big Tiesto fan, I was really looking forward to In Search of Sunrise 4 – Latin America and it is starting to grow on me. But it hasn’t really grabbed me the way In Search of Sunrise 3: Panama or the Nyana albums did. Sometimes I wonder why there is this tendency for dance mix albums to be double albums. It’s just tough to keep the quality and energy up for that long of a period, no matter how talented the DJ is.
The first disc gets off to a bit of a slow start for me, almost chillout trance for lack of a better word. There’s just not a lot of energy. The opening track “Like a Waterfall” from Solarstone & JES has a cool vibe, I’m just not sure I would have started the album with it. Around track 6, things start to pick up with a great Spanish guitar sample (it’s the riff from the Doobie Brothers “Long Train Runnin'”) on “La Noche” from Coca & Villa. I’m really digging the Andy Moor mix of “My World” from Luminary. “Arcadia” from Gabriel & Dresden is just okay; it’s a very austere mix. I like their work on In Search of Sunrise 3 or “Beautiful Things” from Nyana. The BT track “Force of Gravity” from Just Be has been played a lot, but I love that song and the mix on this CD is pretty cool.
The second disc is a whole lot better and makes me wonder why this wasn’t chosen as disc one. I think it makes a much better first impression. It’s just a very good mix throughout the set. Not a lot of big standout tracks, just strong all the way through. I was excited to see the inclusion of Grayarea’s song “Gravity”; this Chicago live dance ensemble really deserves to be heard by more people. Excellent stuff. The Junkie XL Air Guitar Remix of “UR” off Tiesto’s Just Be, has some good moments, mostly because Matt Hales (Aqualung) has one of the better male trance vocals in recent memory on this track. I’m not sure I like it better than the Just Be version, both have their good and bad points.
All in all, this is a decent collection of recent trance and well mixed, although if you listen to a lot of trance you’ll recognize a number of the songs. Tiesto on an off day is still better than a lot of the other DJs out there. But in my opinion he might have to shoot a bit higher than this to maintain his #1 DJ status. If you are already a Tiesto fan, it’s well worth picking this up for the consistently good disc 2, but otherwise you might want to try Nyana or In Search of Sunrise 3.