I've always assumed I'd like this, but now that I'm finally trying it, I really don't.
The star of the show is that rubber note that that was trendy in avant garde perfumes in the 00's. It's the one from Bulgari Black and SMN Nostalgia - the note they usually listed back then as lapsong souchong tea.
This rubber note is combined with lavender, which gives it an unsettling brightness, and some other sort of ozonic smell that reminds me of the smell of sniffing permanent-ink markers back in grade school.
I usually like weird perfumes like this, but something here is making me queasy. I guess it kind of smells like hot tar, but it's so sweet that it's just creepy. Oh well.
To my nose this relaunch of "Tar" is nothing more than CdG's "Odeur 71" in a much smaller and more expensive bottle. I don't get any of the true 'black tar' note I got from the original. And while I realize the folks at CdG love to use odd note names like "grilled cigarettes and town gas" (really, what would a GRILLED CIGARETTE smell like? and would you want to smell like one?) but to my way of thinking, if you're going to call a scent "Tar" there should be some whiff of it in there somewhere. ("Garage" actually does have that oily, concrete-ish smell to it that you would associate with a garage.) Don't get me wrong, I LOVE 'Odeur 71' (I always keep a bottle of it and that's how I know it smells exactly like "Tar") so the reason I give this a neutral rating is because it wears much closer to the skin than "Odeur 71" and it's much more expensive. Live and learn.
The original formulation of Tar was something that I could never conceivably wear, but something that I would always want to smell. It was just a deliciously foul bottle of hot, freshly paved asphalt. It was a hot, but breathably vivid Los Angeles day. I first smelled this at the Museum of Contemporary Art in LA, which at the time was one of the few easy places you could find CdG and this series in particular. The memory is indelible, like a footprint imprinted into a new road by a firm foot.
Let's hope the rerelease for Olfactory Library adheres just as well.
An interesting experimentThis is a very interesting and complex scent. It has three stages.First, there is a clean, industrial, plastic-y bright stage. Like a plastic doll, left in the sun. Definitely some tar notes, but not the warm smell of freshly-poured road asphalt, more like well-aged or well-tempered old tar. An old industrial site... whiff of a metal ashtray... yet attractive, interesting and wearable. Not my style but I am intrigued. Then a great pyrogenic/flinty note develops. The reviewer who mentioned "old concrete basement" really captured this. Old, but clean -- not musty or moldy. Thus, this stage is high-concept and well done.The second phase stalls. It gets a bit sweet and tiresome. I wonder if the scent is losing its edgy nerve. It gets dense, like plasticine. Then, a third stage appears! A woody incense! Quite a surprise, given what has gone before. Though, in thinking of the CdG line, that really is their signature or house style. This is very nice and has good longevity.Overall, a very interesting scent. Try it, don't be put off by the synthetic aspect. :coolold:Pros: The synthetic notes work wellCons: Stalls but recovers"