Chris Coco

Chillin' at the Playboy Mansion

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For Chillin' at the Playboy Mansion, the first chillout record released by the men's magazine with discriminating tastes but questionable motives, downbeat specialist Chris Coco took over the Playboy DJ booth from disco don Dimitri From Paris (who moved on after two Playboy-related mixes). Coco, the man behind the respected BBC radio show The Blue Room, is a perfect choice for a downtempo mix volume, even more of a taste-maker than Dimitri as well as a man with a broader range of favorites. And difficult as it is to imagine the sublime ambient pop of Ulrich Schnauss being enjoyed by most Playboy readers, this one rates far above the dozens of similar post-club collections cluttering the stores. Coco was fortunately given a free hand with the compiling, so if those looking for the next volume of Ultra Chill are disappointed at the lack of Zero 7, at least they'll be soothed by Coco's excellent selector and mixer capabilities. He balances a few familiar downbeat names (Tosca, Thievery Corporation, dZihan & Kamien, FC Kahuna) with a wide range of artists whose tastes sound right in context, including a few intriguing covers on the second disc: first Coco spins his own version of the Twin Peaks classic "Falling," then in short order he plays Tiga's recent cover of Nelly's "Hot in Herre" and Kaori's diva-enhanced cover of Inner City's "Good Life." Most of the time, though, Chillin' at the Playboy Mansion is much more a mix than a selection of songs; Coco is a real talent behind the decks, and he's subtle enough to lay back in the mix instead of pushing tracky chillout music.

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