Vikter Duplaix wants you to believe he”s a cool dude. Swathed in a giant white fur coat, oversized Bono-esque sunglasses, 5 p.m shadow, and a multi-colored bandana, Duplaix oozes a certain not-so-subtle persona that seems out-of-place with his music. As the newest member of K7″s epic DJ Kicks series, Duplaix is looking to establish his niche in the jazz-house/downtempo electronica scene. Unfortunately for him, the chill-out music scene has become one of the biggest areas of growth over the past few years. With this glut of new releases, it”s tough to be an up-and coming “jazz-house” DJ these days. Yet Duplaix”s DJ style is as eclectic as his white fur coat and quirky bandana, touching on a variety of bases over the course of his 73-minute release.
Vikter Duplaix”s style is reminiscent of gorging yourself at a buffet. You want to try a lot of food but know you”d have to loosen your belt a few notches to fit everything in. Vikter”s track selection is a lot like that unappetizing at times, delicious at others. Spanning everything from R&B, hip-hop, and vocal house over the course of 20 tracks takes not only confidence, but also a solid knowledge of the different styles of music to make them fit together. Nevertheless, Duplaix”s style is not so much aimed at the seamless blend of each track into one giant composition. Instead, the album has different sections that are stylistically distinct. A particular high point is near the end, when Duplaix”s hip-hop sensibilities are on display with tracks like De La Soul”s “Copa (Cabanga)” and Bahamadia”s “Philadelphia,” a good chill out Philly-soul-hop groove.
This latest DJ Kicks installment carries the torch of quality DJ Kicks predecessors. The series is like a trusted brand name, that one product you go back to buy again and again but something that can get stale after awhile. Vikter Duplaix is adding his name to that reputation but does it live up to the DJ Kicks standard? Aside from the shameless self-promotion samples every few tracks, the mix is technically thorough and full of Duplaix”s musical sensibilities.