Wednesday, March 18, 2015

City Tower by Jacques Bogart ( Revised from 12-1-2010 )

Bergamot, Incense, Pink Pepper.
Nutmeg, Geranium, Cardamom.
Agarwood, Labdanum, Musk, Leather.

When the need arises to revisit a fragrance and I find I like it more now than I did years ago in the review, it's only fitting ( and fair ) to change the review, in order to reflect your new found appreciation. Now, in my initial review, I gave City Tower a thumbs up. This time around, I find it more nuanced and contemporary than previously perceived.

For whatever reason, memory serves City Tower as being stronger than what I am presently wearing. I still experience the suggestion of Tonka, although it's not listed. However, 5 years ago it seemed more pronounced and I now concede that it must be the balsamic quality in the Cardamom rendition interacting with Nutmeg and Labdanum.

In the end, who cares what's giving me that impression. It happens to smell very good and side steps the generic-chemical label so common in fairly recent releases.

Upon initial application, I cannot say I get the typical Bergamot, but there is a subtle sweet in the mix I attribute to it. It's simply tuned too low to be heard over the Spicy Incense. The floral and spice interplay lend an interesting edge to an otherwise placid accord. It manages to puff it up a bit and give it some character.

On my skin at least, the spirit of City Tower lies in its heart. It's here where its strength resides and its here that its steadfast and unwavering personality greets you, not with a smile, but with a nod of acknowledgement. Yes, City Tower is linear and strong like the name suggests. Like a landmark that happens to catch your eye, it lets you know it's there. It's powerfully understated and won't get in your way. It lends enjoyment by simply being there to experience.

I don't experience transitions or shifts in the fragrance except to say that it morphs into a lower gear after 45 minutes or so. It's seamless enough to where I can never genuinely tell when it begins, but once I do take notice, I'll begin to smell that suggestion of Tonka I mentioned earlier. There's also very subtle hints of leatheriness to augment the balsamic accord that's still thriving.

Truth be told, Oud never comes to fruition on my skin when wearing City Tower. Whatever wood I perceive doesn't represent oud as I know it. It's rather indistinguishable, but completely appropriate and complimentary. The resin is also a nice accent.

Sillage is good with longevity approximately 4 hours on my skin, plus the same amount of time or longer as a skin scent. Thumbs up from Aromi for City Tower by Jacques Bogart. I should mention that this has weather versatility in spite of being substantial. As always, a sample wear is recommended before purchase if at all possible.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Furyo by Jacques Bogart ( Revised from 2011 )

Bergamot, Lavender, Artemesia, Coriander, Green Notes.
Jasmine, Geranium, Cinnamon, Rose, Carnation, Thyme, Honey.
Patchouli, Amber, Vetiver, Civet, Moss, Musk, Vanilla.

My initial review was comparing the vintage formula to the later release of this 1988 strangely compelling scent from Jacques Bogart. The two things I will reiterate from the 2011 post is that the vintage really does possess better overall character and that Furyo is a forerunner to Arabian Nights from the same house. Let's just say it smells like the blueprint for it and leave it at that.

I suppose one of the things I like about Furyo is that it genuinely was not trying to smell like anything else or even attempting to improve on an already existing idea. Fragrances in the 70's and 80's were much like music was in the 60's and 70's. Variety was encouraged and financially backed, so taking chances was way more common than what I see today. This attitude produced some real iconic creations. Naturally, there's going to be failures as well in an atmosphere of experimentation, but just look back at the results in scent and music to see if it was justified.

Furyo is a masculine aroma. It's dark and wears on the heavy side because it possesses substance. There's an air of mystery about what you're smelling and the accents from honey and civet augment Furyo with a sensuality that isn't in your face, but obvious to those who get close. It makes for an interesting choice to wear during the colder months and I wouldn't hesitate to reach for Furyo for a night of fun, romance or both.

Furyo has some sparkle in its opening. Once that subsides, there's not much development or actual need for any. Within minutes, it basically unfolds and matures before your eyes and remains as such for the length of the ride. Furyo is a dense and concerted effort from many. Woods, Animalics, Floral and Earth converge for 5 plus hours before finally relinquishing its grip to a subtle interpretation of moss and vanilla. Thumbs up from Aromi for Vintage Furyo by Jacques Bogart. As always, a sample wear is highly recommended.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Versace Oud Noir pour Homme

Bitter Orange, Neroli, Pepper.
Cardamom, Saffron, Olibanum.
Patchouli, Leather, Woods.

Versace's Oud Noir for Men is perhaps one of the more wearable interpretations out there; especially if the note gives you problems. Personally, I don't even consider this an Oud fragrance. Why, you ask? Because it's not an oud scent in any respect. Whatever is actually being passed off as oud performs softly, as does the entire scent from start to early finish.

Oud Noir begins with a subtle, citrus and mild camphor. It's pleasant, innocuous and versatile. I can also say it's uninspired and I wouldn't be inaccurate. After 5 minutes or so, there's some spice. the suggestion of fruit and perhaps balsam. I don't experience genuine clarity in the accords and as Oud Noir is tuned at a low volume, this is simply a spray-n-go type fragrance.

It may appear I'm bashing on Oud Noir a bit, but that's not my intention. There's a definitive place for scents such as this. Oud Noir may be low key, but it's full enough to be considered as a choice for warmer temps when you want some substance instead of reaching for your arsenal of aquatics.

I suppose that when I bought this, I was expecting something much different than what it is. On the flip side, I have enough heavy choices with or without Oud for cold weather and Oud Noir actually is very versatile.

Not long ago, this fragrance was selling at auction for around $100 US and wasn't widely available. That made it desirable. Now, it's selling for quite a bit less and is more plentiful. I do recommend Oud Noir if it can be had for around $60 US for the 100ml. bottle. Sillage is moderate at best, with longevity approximately 4 hours on my skin before reapplication. A postive-neutral rating from Aromi for Versace's Oud Noir and highly recommend sampling before pulling the trigger.

Kalemat by Arabian Oud

Blueberry, Anise.
Rosemary, Cashmere Wood.
Musk, Amber, Sweet Leaf, Vanilla.

Kalemat by Arabian Oud has been a fairly recent addition to my wardrobe and rotation for work. Now, I know it smells good or else why on earth would I wear it? I also have confirmation due to co-workers not only commenting on how damn good I smell, but inquiring what it is, where they can get it.........and do I have any I can spare until they buy a bottle. Suffice it to say I have already given away 10ml. atomizers of Kalemat to a few, happy peers.

By now, we all are aware that Arabian spray perfumes have not been as well done as their CPO's, nor on par with western spray perfumes. I see some changes in this lately; mainly in the ones I have been sampling and/or purchasing.

Kalemat by Arabian is a terrific bang-for-your-buck Woody Oriental on my skin. It's linear, pleasant, full bodied and possesses very nice sillage and superior longevity. If I like the totality of a particular scent, I could care less if it has 3 recognizable transitions or just one. It's all about whether you enjoy what is drifting off your skin.

From start to finish, Kalemat is a dense array of Woods, subtle resins, the suggestion of sweet and a shadowy tobacco note. The accord is of one mind and blurred, but in spite of that, it's a successful endeavor and a worthy addition for my cold weather rotation. Sillage is above average, with longevity approximately 6 hours plus and more as a skin scent. Thumbs up from Aromi for Arabain Oud's Kalemat. As always, a sample wear is recommended.

Sandalo per Teti by Laura Tonatto

Orange, Lemon, Tea, Lavender, Sandalwood, Wood notes.

Laura Tonatto's Sandalo per Teti goes on the skin unlike any other Sandalwood scent I own or have tried. The Tea infused Lavender is, after a few minutes, accompanied by an edgy citric accord ( with peel ) that gives me the illusion of spice. This tea-like salutation, leading to a Sandalwood finish, is what I find unique. It begins on the sharp side, but balances out rather nicely quickly.

The rendition and implementation of Tea here is very interesting to me. On my skin, it's a standout note and I can detect how the lavender is interacting with it. Apparently, it's a combination that has me continually smelling where I applied it. The citric accord has receded after 5 minutes and lurks in the shadows for a little while longer, before relinquishing itself to the encroaching sandalwood.

Once into the base and drydown stages of Sandalo per Teti, a pleasant and polite Sandalwood accord emerges. It's not loud, assertive or astringent. It has a hint of "cream" to it and is still accented by the Tea note that has been alive on my skin since the onset.

Sandalo per Teti is a 15 year old release and works well on me as a woody with manners and curious personality. Sillage is moderate, with longevity approximately 5 hours before reapplication. Half of that time this performs as a personal space scent. Thumbs up from Aromi for Laura's interpretation of Sandalwood. As always, a sample wear is highly recommended.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Free Life by Etienne Aigner ( Revised from 2010 )

Bergamot, Sage, Nutmeg, Lavender, Rosewood.
Cedar, Geranium, Jasmine, Muguet, Patchouli, Rose.
Amber, Sandalwood, Tonka Bean, Vanilla.

I was compelled today to revisit Etienne Aigner's 1987 release of Free Life. As of late, I've been wearing some of the darker, designer ouds like Ferrari and that prompted me to dig out the bottle of Free Life. I definitely don't wear Free Life enough, but that is due to the amount of fragrance choices I have. Owning many bottles is a two edged sword.

Free Life does not smell like the designer ouds I have, but it wears like they do. It is dense, semi dark and a rather serious scent. This isn't a somber fragrance, but it surely isn't frivolous or lighthearted. They certainly don't create masculines anymore using this template, so anytime I do wear Free Life, I thoroughly enjoy it.

One of things I like is the tuning of Rosewood, Lavender and Tonka. There's a somewhat moist quality present and the suggestion of licorice. Normally, I'll experience that through Anise or Tarragon. In Free Life, it's accomplished through combinations.

There's quite a bit going on in Free Life, yet it smells as if it's devoid of transitions until the extended drydown. The Spice, Woods, Floral, Earth and Oriental accents seem welded together from the onset. Because of the overall character this scent takes on, it appears to be more suited for cool to cold temperatures. It's extremely full bodied, yet doesn't cut a swath while entering a room immediately after application. The totality of Free Life affords the wearer the ability  to smell extremely different, masculine and could almost pass itself off as something creative Jacques Bogart would release today. Free Life isn't synthetic smelling nor does it possess a chemical vibe. This has gravitas, but all fragrances that have this quality are always going to be off putting to some.

I believe Free Life is classified as a Woody Amber, but the Oriental finish is very enjoyable and long lasting. I've worn this scent in warm and hot temperatures, but at least for me, it performs best in the winter temps. You may have a different opinion.

Free Life is yet another Etienne Aigner creation that got glossed over since its release in 1987. To be honest, I can understand that situation since Aigner didn't exactly have the best ad and marketing campaigns in a time period where bigger, bolder and outlandish weren't considered polarizing.

Sillage is moderate, yet substantial and full bodied. Longevity is approximately 5-6 hours on my skin with normal sprays. The personal space hang time is just as long or longer. You can smell this the next day with no problem. Thumbs up from Aromi for Etienne Aigner's Free Life and as always, a sample wear if highly recommended. ( if possible ).

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Gold Rose Oudh by Tiziana Terenzi

Bergamot, Fir, Ember, Sand Accord.
Rose, Patchouli, Black Pepper.
Oudh, Amber, Sandalwood, Musk, Honey.

After reading numerous reviews, with almost all extolling Gold Rose Oudh to be a top tier player in its genre, I pulled the trigger blind, once again because........well, what else could I do? Should I have used common sense and obtained a sample first like I always recommend to others? In my case, the answer is yes........but probably not for the reasons you think.

Gold Rose Oudh is a quality Spicy Rose creation, so that's a good thing. On the flip side, Gold Rose Oudh is the same pattern I've smelled time and time again, well made or not. The listed notes are here that I wanted, but the tuning is for a song that simply wouldn't make it to my playlist anymore, well played or not.

I suppose that, in a nutshell, my wearings of Gold Rose Oudh have afforded me the experience of Peppery Rose and Oud. In a genre that has kind of run its course for me, I held out hope that the Amber and Honey would be up front, pronounced and steer this into sweet and slightly feral territory. It was not to be however and as well done as this uncomplicated fragrance is, it's simply another expensive rehash for me.

I get Rose. I get Pepper......and I also get oud. This just so happens to be the variety that morphs into a mild B.O. quality on my skin. It is mild and it takes 30 minutes or longer to come to fruition, but it's there nonetheless. I'm persuaded that others have not had this experience or else they would have said so.

So, I'm bucking the trend here and stating Gold Rose Oudh is a nicely done run-of-the-mill Spicy Rose with woods. Sillage is moderate at best with longevity approximately 4 hours before becoming a close scent. Neutral rating from Aromi with a strong recommendation to try before you buy.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Prada Infusion d'Homme ( Revised from 2012 )

Neroli, Iris, Incense, Cedar, Vetiver, Benzoin.

I reviewed this 3 years ago and since then, I've acquired a huge bottle. It behooves me to revise my post as I find myself reaching for this as a go-to work scent. I suppose it's safe to say that the totality of Prada's Infusion D'Homme is one of versatility and acceptability. As "clean" a quality that this possesses, it's also good to note that this is deceivingly strong for the first few hours. One tends to think of clean fragrances as a genre lacking projection or tenacity. Not so with Infusion D'Homme. I'm not as liberal these days when applying it since I find it easy to do so. It simply smells terrific.

The rendition and tuning of Iris present allows Infusion D'Homme to be broader than just a masculine wear. It's versatile enough for this to be worn by the female persuasion. There's nothing macho here and to me, it sits squarely in the middle of the gender line.

The presence of soap is easily detected here, but this aspect is one of quality and sans anything scratchy or caustic. The opening is an extremely pleasant experience. Fresh-out-of-the-shower vibrancy is manifested and I enjoy the faint violet and slightly sweet resins coming to life after the first minute. This is a very uncomplicated scent that smells full bodied and sheer at the same time. It's lightweight and deceptively substantial; a quality that has intrigued me since my initial wearing. I also experience rather impressive longevity and that's an added bonus I hadn't counted on. Leather is hinted at during the heart accord and onward, but it's never extroverted on my skin.

There's also the suggestion of smoke, but it too is of a passive nature. Regardless of whether or not Infusion D'Homme was intended to have transitions or simply be a linear wear is unimportant. On me, it's simplistic, pleasant, versatile and those around me have made mention of it on more than occasion. I've concluded this is a really good choice for where I work and being around all sorts of different people.

Sillage is moderately perfect. The longevity on my skin is approximately 6 hours before morphing into a personal space scent. The first few hours of wear are easily detectable and this is where it is deceptive. Go easy on the trigger until you find the amount that works perfect for your situation and environment. Thumbs up from Aromi for Prada's Infusion D'Homme and as always, a sample wear is highly recommended in spite of my opinion. As for me, I'm quite sure I'll be picking up a large backup bottle before this scent disappears either into discontinuation or reformulation.....if it hasn't already.........

Original Penguin for Men

Apples, Fir,  Lavender, Pepper, Musk, Neroli, Patchouli, Vanilla.

Sometimes, mediocrity is not only a safe bet, but pleasant and versatile enough to be considered an intelligent addition to ones wardrobe. Penguin for Men is a contemporary take on the somewhat overdone Musk-Patch-Vanilla trifecta.I purchased this sometime in 2014 at TJM for peanuts and once worn, I was pleasantly surprised.

Original Penguin certainly doesn't break any new ground, but I have to admit that price point aside, this is a comfortable wear when you just want to smell good and not have to think about it. The cost is another advantage, aside from the fact that this is a year round scent.

Penguin opens with a rather well done accord consisting of slightly balsamic apple and citrus. There's subtle spice with just a hint of sour-bitter in the mix. I genuinely enjoy the accord and only wish it could retain its vibrancy and vitality. Of course it does not, but then again, there's no fragrance that accomplishes that feat.

I suppose the only thing I wish this fragrance did not possess was the synthetic quality that so many current releases have. The chemical quality is usually a big turn off for me personally, but in Penguin it's simply noted and tolerated.

The base reveals a musky vanilla that's played at low volume. The Patchouli is subdued on my skin and exhibits an earthiness as opposed to a conventional patch aroma. That aspect works well to maintain a modern feel to Penguin for Men. Sillage is moderate with longevity approximately 3 to 4 hours on me before I reapply. Original Penguin is a safe, polite choice with versatility. Thumbs up from Aromi for Penguin and as always, a sample wear is highly recommended.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Salvador by Salvador Dali

Aldehydes, Artemesia, Bergamot, Caraway, Coriander, Green Notes, Pepper, Tarragon.
Carnation, Cinnamon, Jasmine, Rose.
Amber, Cedar, Leather, Musk, Patchouli, Tonka Beans, Oakmoss, Vanilla.

If I didn't know better, I would think that in 1992, a bottle of Chanel, Carven Homme, Ricci Club and vintage Canoe somehow got blended together and the result was Salvador by Dali. Everyone who is familiar with me at all knows I'm a guy who grew up in the 1970's and has experienced the fragrances of those bygone days. Some were excellent, some were horrendous and a good portion fell through the cracks of mediocrity. Salvador emits the vibe of a scent created and then released in the wrong decade.

To be polite, I will say that Salvador is mediocre. I'm not going to lie and state I like it when I don't. I also don't hate it and the scent doesn't warrant vitriol. It simply is what it is. It possesses a somewhat dated theme in its DNA and unfortunately, that gene pool is associated with uninspired and less than stellar quality.

Looking at the accords, I should love this fragrance. It has all the culprits necessary for a kick ass classic, yet wearing it produces no excitement or pleasure for me at all. It's simply "there" and the more I choose to sample it, the more ambivalent I become.

Salvador comes out of the sprayer with promise. It somewhat shimmers around a halo of citrus, stem-like quality and spice. The stem aroma is a combination of notes resulting in a green theme. It's moist as well and holds its ground as carnation segues into the transition. It's here where Salvador has not trained for endurance. Momentum begins to weaken after 5 minutes and loses the steam necessary to showcase the heavier hitters in the heart and base.

For me at least, Salvador unveils a green moss to showcase the base and it's apparently tuned too high for my tastes. It overshadows the other notes that I wanted to experience and as I already mentioned, it's already losing strength. Now, is Salvador cheap, crass or lacking quality? Not to me, but the totality of aroma just isn't what I expected or enjoyable enough for me to heap praise. I grabbed a new 1.7oz. bottle cheap, so I don't feel too badly about it. I'll sell this down the road without ever wearing it again. Neutral rating from Aromi and a sample wear is highly recommended.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Black Oud Les Senteurs Gourmandes by Laurence Dumont

White Woods, Agarwood, Patchouli, Sandalwood.

Funny how certain renditions of a particular "note" get burned into our aroma-memory and are forever aligned with a particular house or perfumer. Case in point is the patchouli implemented in Black Oud. It is reminiscent of Molinard's rendition. Not exactly the same, but definitely associated to one another.

Black Oud, on my skin at least, is not about oud. While linear, it focuses on woods and patchouli that are lightly accentuated by spice and a hint of smoke. This could have aptly been named Patchouli Noir Sport and I wouldn't have batted an eye.

This 2013 release initially goes on the skin slightly alcoholic, then quickly tempered by a woody patchouli. The accord is airy and mildly sweet, pleasant and has the earth tone you'd expect from a Les Senteur rendition of Patchouli.

Black Oud wears linear on me after numerous full wearings. After a few minutes, the version of Agarwood is downplayed and reminds me more of a barbershop-agar accord than anything else. It's not a "negative", but not something I expected. At any rate, the totality smells good and matches, if not exceeds, its own price point.

The base accord exhibits subtle spice and hints at smoke intermittently. The woods, patch and earth tones remain from beginning to end. Sillage for Black Oud is average or possibly slightly above and longevity, on my skin, is approximately 4-5 hours before morphing into a personal space scent. You'll be able to detect this 10 plus hours later. Thumbs up from Aromi for Black Oud by Les Senteurs and as always, a sample wear is highly recommended.

Oud for Love by The Different Company

Aldehydes, Angelica, Coriander, Caraway, Saffron, Whiskey.
Cloves, Iris, Sandalwood, Tuberose, Ylang Ylang.
Agarwood, Amber, Castoreum, Caramel, Immortelle, Heliotrope, Musk, Tolu Balsam, Vetiver.

Bertrand Duchaufour's resume is.......let's just say impressive. The lists of his creations are too numerous to mention and when I recall his contributions, I think of transparency, well executed and memorable. Collection Excessive's Oud for Love is yet another worthy interpretation of the oud genre, courtesy of Bertrand. This man has skills and the uncanny ability to take an idea, shape it mentally and then manifest it in a liquid delivery system in order for you and I to not only to "see" it,but to experience it as well. I've found some similarities in Oud for Love and Ameer Al Oudh. Their themes are related and Bertrands version is airborne and clear, whereas the Lattafa is weightier and perhaps slightly less versatile because of this. I happen to like both, but Oud for Love is the more luxurious and elegant of the two after numerous comparisons.

For a surety, this release is easily worn by either gender. Much of Duchaufour's work, over the years,  has resulted in a final product with sheerness. Oud for Love continues this technique of substantial, yet breathable.

I purchased a bottle of Oud for Love in order to experience full wearings. In truth, I like it more each wearing. There's much going on in this aroma, yet it does so without yelling. The tuning of notes is the magic here. It's the difference between a guitar riff being played legato instead of staccato. Effortless and fluid from initial spray to comfortable drydown.  The use of clove here is actually masterful. Playing off other spice qualities and Tuberose, I experience a mild herbaceousness because of it. The other players, who I normally attempt to identify and extol, one way or the other, are present and accounted for, but so well orchestrated that you simply need to sample this and decide for yourself. I cannot help but recommend this if you're looking to try an elegant oud that won't make you choose between it and paying your rent.

I have absolutely no regrets for purchasing Oud for Love and because of it, I am seriously considering a bottle of Oud Shamash as well. The Different Company's Oud for Love genuinely sits in the middle of the gender line to my sensibilities. It's versatile, uplifting, elegant and does not bog you down like some ouds have a habit of. It has a rather high price point, yet can be found online for slightly under $2 per ml. That's what I paid for mine and to me, it was worth it.

Sillage is polite as you would expect, but still smells full in your personal space. Longevity is yet another deceiving attribute. You can detect this the next morning rather easily, but during the wearings, expect 5 hours. Thumbs up from Aromi for Oud for Love by The Different Company. As always, a sample wear is highly recommended.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Ameer Al Oudh by Lattafa

Agarwood, Vanilla, Sugar, Labdanum.

A tolerable blast of alcohol rushes out of the sprayer when applying this very pleasant Arabian creation. Take heart though, because it departs as quickly as a deadbeat dad called upon to write a check for his monthly child support payment.

As a fragrance accumulator and overall lover of scent, I've been trying to intelligently sift through the tidal wave of oud releases that have bombarded our shores and internet clutches the last few years.

My reasons are simple; I've experienced, own or have owned just about every desirable designer that I've deemed worth having in a preposterously large wardrobe. Oud is not a western sensibility and because of that, it's only recently making an impact here in the States.

Naturally, it's making an impact on my wardrobe as well, but there's always the risk of bad blind buys when pulling the trigger on full bottles because samples are not available. Yea....I've made a few disappointing purchases, but this isn't one of them. Instead of a CPO, this is western style and yet it manages to wear like a CPO delivery system, but not quite as heavy. Bottom line is that, on my skin, Ameer Al Oudh is a deep woody oud, sans the skank and complimented by a subtle gourmand and petrol quality. Is labdanum, one of my favorite accomplices, in this brew? It's hard for me to tell since Ameer Al Oudh is dense and blurred. Besides that, who cares if the totality smells good.

For its price point and availability in the States, this is a nice addition to your collection. It probably won't collect dust as it performs well in cool to cold temperatures. If you like Mukhallat Malaki CPO by Swiss Arabian or Oud for Love by TDC, there's a real good chance you'll like this as well.

Sillage is above average for an hour then settles to a polite throw. Longevity is what you would expect and has a hang time on me for about 5 hours before lasting another 5 as a personal space scent. Thumbs up from Aromi for Ameer Al Oudh and as always, a sample wear is recommended, if at all possible.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Rhinoceros by Zoologist Perfumes ( Paul Kiler )

Rum, Bergamot, Lavender. Elemi, Sage, Armoise, Conifer Needles.

Pinewood, Tobacco, Immortelle, Geranium, Agarwood, Chinese Cedar Wood.

Vetiver, Sandalwood, Amber, Smoke, Leather, Musks.

Mrs. Aromi and I could not possibly be more different when it comes to processing aromas we encounter. 99% of what I like, she naturally dislikes.....or hates outright. It's an amazing thing. Rhinoceros by Paul Kiler is a case in point. She says " It smells like a funky mens locker room", whilst I interpret it as a slightly boozy, woody leather with smoke. To drive this home. his other release called "PANDA" is one she delights herself in, yet I experience a borderline urinous accord the entire wearing. Suffice it to say I did not enjoy that one.........

Rhino however spreads out on the skin, upon application, like a well groomed and clean shaven group of football players, bursting out of the huddle and lining up at the line of scrimmage. There's energy here that is tangible. The notes are packed tightly together and then once the huddle breaks, an audible is called and the formation spreads out, giving everything more room.

There's an approximate 2-3 minute window, immediately following application, that I can detect almost every listed note. Almost as quickly, that clarity vanishes and is replaced by a heavier, denser quality and aroma. This begins the heart of Rhinoceros and it pumps the suggestion of whiskey soaked suede, pepper, moist earth and forest woods that have been permanently altered by heat and fire. From the initial, subtle smokiness, a charred leather rears its head and supplants the suede that manifested only moments earlier. These were noticeable transitions and I enjoyed trying to analyze them in real time.

Rhinoceros spends the remainder of its time, on my skin, as a smoke-infused woody leather, accented intermittently by earthy tones. The rendition of smoke here, used by Paul Kiler, once the base and drydown commence is perhaps one of the more superior and wearable ones I've come across as of late.

Sillage is average or slightly better than that, with longevity approximately 4-5 hours on my skin before turning into a skin scent for just as long. This accomplished with moderate sprays. Thumbs up from Aromi for Paul Kiler's Rhinoceros and as you would expect, a sample wear is recommend before purchase.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Tristano Onofri revisited

Basil, Bergamot, Clary Sage, Green Notes, Lavender.
Geranium, Jasmine, Muguet, Rose, Sandalwood.
Amber, Cedar, Leather, Moss, Musk, Tonka, Vanilla.

First, a shout out to my friend Henry Ong ( aka XMEN and mrscentman) for my recent purchase of Tristano Onofri. Thanks again Henry. As always, it was a pleasure to deal with an honest, reputable human being such as yourself. Suffice it to say that the items were completely intact and stored properly. My first encounter with Tristano came sometime in 2008 and if memory serves, I received that bottle from Henry as well. Tristano Onofri is a dignified masculine that flirts with woods, fougere and oriental. I suppose I wouldn't be remiss if I stated it's a Woody Fougiental. Regardless of its category, the important things are overall aroma and performance.

Tristano opens with a thicker feel than you might expect, compared to its volume and throw. It seems to hug the skin and retain a substantial quality without permeating your surroundings. I find this aspect of the fragrance to allow one the opportunity to smell good at work or in other, conscientious conditions. The volume is governed, but succeeds in smelling full.

Blurred or well blended, depending upon how you want to look at it, there's contributions from many players without any one note overtaking the composition. On my skin, the suggestion of green bouquet, mild spice and a woody undertow come to the fore and stay prevalent until the drydown stage. Sure, there are noticeable nuances from others in the accords, but I'm simply describing what flourishes on me. What I notice most is that Tristano simply smells good and leans perhaps a tad formal. This would surely perform admirably in close quarters.

I understand the term "formal" may raise red flags with some and construe Tristano as a potentially dated fragrance. I don't find it that way at all and if I smelled this on a man of any age, I wouldn't bat an eyebrow. I would however, think that he sure smells pleasant. However, everything isn't for everyone and that's why we sample before purchase ( if at all possible ).

Once the base and drydown commence on my skin, Moss that's accentuated by mild amber are more noticeable, while the other listed players never really pop on me. It's not a disappointment however. It seems to be how the base accord is tuned and possibly the desire of the nose responsible to keep a green theme perpetuated. Sillage is moderate, even with heavier sprays with longevity approximately 3 hours on my skin and a bit longer as a skin scent. Not a strong scent, but a pleasant one. Thumbs up from Aromi for Tristano Onofri and as always, a sample wear is highly recommended.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Regine's for Men by Parfums Regine

Bergamot, Galbanum, Green Notes, Lavender, Lemon, Neroli, Pineapple.
Clary Sage, Coriander, Cyclamen, Jasmine, Rose.
Amber, Cedar, Musk.

Every now and then, I run into too much of a good thing. I'm not hating on this blind purchase, but it's giving me the "Damn" factor when in fact, I was hoping for the Wow factor. Yes, it was a blind buy and on a hunch, I pulled the trigger. The listed notes intrigued me for one, while the fact that another release by this house called "JimmyZ" proved to be acceptable. The totality of this scent simply isn't "me", but I'm getting a little ahead of myself here. I may have saved myself the trouble and expense had there been more reviews and information available.

The tuning of implemented notes simply doesn't suit me. Looking at the accords, I held out high hopes that this could be a substantial performer. It performs all right, but the overall aroma doesn't cut it. The fruit note ( pineapple?) and what must be the listed "Cyclamen" are disharmonious on me. There's nothing terrible here, but nothing evolving on my skin evokes sensory enjoyment. Regine's for Men is substantial, almost striking in the opening and yet lacks the pleasure factor.

Yes, there's Green, Lavender, Spice and woodsy herbs. Normally, I love these notes, but not here. Perhaps you would find more redeeming qualities than I. You may also love it because we all interpret differently. This is not a Powerhouse fragrance in spite of it possessing a full nature. Sillage is acceptable with longevity approximately 3 hours on me before morphing into a close scent. Neutral rating from Aromi and I feel I'm being generous. Again, you may disagree, but a sample wear is highly recommended.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Bergamot Vert by Thymes

Bergamot, Cypress, Jasmine, Lemon, Petitgrain, Red Currant, White Musk.

With the warm weather finally here to stay for awhile, it's a habit of mine ( like many others ) to try different citrus oriented scents that are time-appropriate. Not too long ago, I had opportunity to buy Bergamot Vert along with Azur. Having already reviewed Azur, I thought it timely to wear Bergamot Vert a few times in order to get the gist of it.

Truthfully, I've worn it quite a bit as of late and in spite of being linear, the straight forwardness of this fragrance has become endearing. Definitely a spray 'n' go choice for summer, Bergamot Vert succeeds on my skin as a pleasant, casual daytime aroma that performs well in close quarters.

There's not much to dissect here and to over analyze this fragrance would be an exercise in hearing myself talk. It's exactly what the name denotes and what one would expect from a "Bergamot Vert". What I experience is a combination of Bergamot, Neroli and Mandarin. There's the green and zest qualities present and for something of this nature, Bergamot Vert has surprising longevity.

Dedicated citrus scents normally dissipate quickly ( at least on my skin ), so I notice when one affords me some hang time. I'm not insinuating nuclear longevity here folks. I'm happy with the 3 hours I get when wearing this. Naturally, there's a bit more performing as a skin scent. Sillage for Bergamot Vert is average, even with heavier sprays. The entire wearing displays "fresh" and there's no surprises or transitions. Thumbs up from Aromi for Thymes Bergamot Vert and as always, a sample wear is highly recommended in lieu of blind purchase.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Cachet by Matchabelli

Aldehydes, Galbanum, Herbs, Spices.
Jasmine, Orris Root, Patchouli, Rose, Vetiver.
Amber, Civet, Leather, Musk, Oakmoss.

Wearing a fragrance, any fragrance, is different than smelling it on another individual. Since I'm a mature male, it would stand to reason that I've smelled this on women during my lifetime. I was able to snag a bottle of this recently and upon applying it the first time, I truly didn't care for it. To be honest, the opening was a bit too old fashioned and sharp for my current tastes. I remember thinking that I was glad I bought this vintage perfume cheap. $1.50 US for a 99% full bottle completely intact is always a win-win.

I admit to not recognizing the aroma during the duration of the opening. It smelled like a blast from the past, but not something I recall experiencing on the female persuasion. After 5 minutes however, I did an about-face, not only liking the transition but also knowing that I had smelled this before. It was the top accord, fleeting as it is, that I had never experienced. After all, how could I? I have never worn it until now and obviously have never been around someone who just applied it to themselves.

What I found slightly crass and intrusive morphed into something different, softer and assuredly more sensual. From the heart onward, a supple green and earthy tone comes alive that is accented by a mild herbaceousness. Normally, I have no problem with Aldehydes in the top accords, but I simply don't care for it here. Luckily, it lasts only minutes and steps aside to permit the spirit of this fragrance to shine. Even Mrs. Aromi thinks Cachet is "not bad" and normally disdains 99% of what I review.

Once the opening has run its course, the sensual side of Cachet begins to unravel. The presence lowers and seems to hug the body while revealing the heavier notes in this composition. A soft, floral herbaceousness comes to fruition on me, accentuated by a dry rendition of subtle rose. Once the base and drydown commence, moss and musk integrate very politely and permit a nice resiny amber to appear during extended drydown. Sillage is good the initial 5 minutes, then reduces to polite soon after. Longevity is approximately 5 hours on me with a few more as a skin scent. Thumbs up from Aromi, in spite of the opening that I don't care for. As always, a sample wear is highly recommended.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

L'Eau D'Issey by Issey Miyake

Cyclamen, Freesia, Lotus, Melon.
Carnation, Lily, Peony.
Amber, Cedar, Musk, Sandalwood.

L'Eau D'Issey has been around now for a few decades and other than smelling this on others in passing, this is the first time I've gotten to sample it numerous times. My first thoughts are fresh, lucid, feminine and pleasant to be around.

After numerous wearings, I can't say that impression has changed any. I don't find it groundbreaking in any way like some others, but this is a subjective hobby after all. It is a deserving scent though and most assuredly warrants a test run if this genre floats your boat. L'Eau D'Issey isn't over the top feminine, but just enough so that I choose not to wear it.

The first 5 minutes of applying L'Eau D'Issey graces the wearer with a sheer accord consisting of Freesia, suggestions of fruit and an ozonic-green stem quality. I find it bracing, but not necessarily sharp and it only lasts moments before dissipation occurs. There's an aldehydic aspect to this top accord that's short lived as well. A restrained Carnation note is also evident and it gives the composition a much needed edge.

The fruit aspect is another component that dissolves too quickly for my liking, but it may not bother you. I wish it were tuned a little more assertively as to hang around longer in a more noticeable fashion. On my skin, the Freesia, Carnation, Subtle woods, Stem and remnants of ozone are what remain from the heart accord onward. Some reviewers have stated that this is a strong fragrance, but it doesn't perform that way on me. Granted, the skin phase is considerable, but the time allotted to presence and projection is average at best. Perhaps the bottle I've acquired is a reformulation and I say that not knowing if there has been one.....or two....or three.....versions of this. After all, it is decades old.

At any rate, L'Eau D'Issey is a nice fragrance sans the wow factor. Pleasantly unremarkable wouldn't be inaccurate, but I do think more highly of it than that description. It's a good, feminine choice for the warmer months and smells vibrant for an impressive amount of time.

Sillage starts out good, then reduces to average within minutes. Longevity is approximately 3 hours on me ( tops ) before evolving into a personal space scent. Thumbs up from Aromi for Miyake's L'Eau D'Issey. A strong recommendation, as always, to sample before purchasing.