Sunday, 26 January 2014

Bang Review

Although Marc Jacobs' Bang is structured around a woody-amber skeleton that recalls a myriad modern men’s fragrances, it bravely renounces the citrus and metallic lavender embellishments typical of the genre. Instead, Yann Vasnier fleshed out the composition using Givaudan’s aptly named patent molecule Pepperwood. Boosted by a large helping of Iso E Super, the effect is a bright, diffusive, woody, and above all peppery fragrance with strong mossy undertones.

Nose: Yann Vasnier
House: Marc Jacobs
Release date: 2010
Notes (per Fragrantica): black, white and pink pepper, masculine woody notes, elemi resin, aromatic benzoin, vetiver, white moss, patchouli

Saturday, 18 January 2014

Orlando Review

Orlando by Jardins d’Écrivains bears more than a passing resemblance to another piece of faux Elizabethanism: No.88 by Czech & Speake (1980).
Where the latter commences with a whoosh of invigorating geranium and citrus, Orlando cuts straight to the common heart of musty, balsamic rose that’s a bit sweet, a bit earthy-spicy, and oddly redolent of head shops.
A matte pallor though soon overtakes Orlando revealing a base of paste-y musks tinged with some lingering oakmoss (-replacer).

Nose: Anaïs Biguine
House: Parfums d’Écrivains
Release date: 2013
Notes (per Fragrantica): orange, pink pepper, ginger; amber, patchouli cloves; guaiac wood, peru balsam, musk

Sunday, 12 January 2014

Fleurs de Sel Review

Fleurs de Sel is an unusual aromatic chypre.
With distinct marine overtones, the perfume opens to a rich accord of Herbes de Provence, citrus and dry, woody florals. Like some kind of medieval poultice, its medicinal associations are strengthened by a notable dose of clovey (iso-/) eugenol. In the drydown, a restrained base emerges smelling of vetiver, a touch of hay and real oakmoss.
Although Fleur de Sel’s myriad elements work in surprising concert, for me, the whole never quite manages to add up to more than the sum of its parts.

Nose: Miller Harris
House: Miller Harris
Release date: 2007
Notes (per Fragrantica): rosemary, thyme, clary sage, angelica, salt; iris, rose, narcissus; leather, amber, oakmoss, vetiver.

Sunday, 5 January 2014

Carnal Flower Review

Dominique Ropion's take on a tuberose soliflore opens green and camphorous. Exaggerated yet avoiding all-out caricature, the cooling top notes contrapose the heavy, complex heart that, faithful to tuberose's character, has jasmine-, lily- and orange blossom-like facets. Sweet, coconuty lactones meanwhile, lend the bouquet its characteristic creaminess and contribute to an overall tropical vibe. More sultry than carnal, it is nevertheless a glorious example of perfumery in the grand style.

Nose: Dominique Ropion
House: Editions de Parfum Frédéric Malle
Release date: 2005
Notes (per Fragrantica): bergamot, melon, eucalyptus; ylang-ylang, jasmine, tuberose, salicylates; tuberose absolute, orange blossom absolute, coconut, musk.