New Main Guy on Here

Vio-Volta by D.S. & Durga

Drugstore-candy violet soliflore sharpened at the top a just bit by a second (literally) of rhubarb and rounded off at the base just a bit by a second (literally) of patchouli.

An expression of violet that probably should be sampled by enjoyers of perfume-as-art. However, it is so unchanging that you'll build a concrete conception of it over time and have almost no reason to spray it.

Find a partial from someone who, like me, got what they could out of it -- get what you can out of it -- and sell as a partial to the next sicko.

Acqua di Cuba by Santa Maria Novella

Wanted to love this -- and if you're a huge fan of natural mosquito repellents, you will. I didn't get any tobacco at all, but the scent does develop into a honey-bomb as it develops. Good performance.

Sandalo by Santa Maria Novella

Reminds me of a fan procured by my parents in Thailand while they were living there in the late eighties; this must be one of the most faithful and literal sandalwoods on the market. Must test.

Tuscan Leather Intense by Tom Ford

Eau de Rented Bowling Shoe. I mean this in the most literal possible way. Simply delightful.

Amber Teutonic by D.S. & Durga

It's a mentholy/piney lanolin bomb. Strangely, the notes combine to smell variously of coconut and bubblegum -- but the verdance prevents these accords from any cloying sweetness.

Magic factor: 0.6

Monocle Scent One : Hinoki by Comme des Garçons

It's the cedar note from Kyoto. There's a little more to it than that but that's the gist. Great scent, performance pretty terrible (as it goes with CdG for me).

Violet Empire by CB I Hate Perfume

Violet (floral, not candy)-flavored chewable Vitamin C tablet. No-go for me.

Burberry Brit by Burberry

I'm pretty sure it's been reformulated. It used to be, as you'll see described by reviewers here, a scent as multifaceted as it was versatile. I could go on describing the old notes, but they're gone.

As is, it's a Dior Addict clone that is missing both the florals and the beautiful vanilla basenote. The Italian lime is great -- juicy even -- but absent the peony and amber it is linear and cloying. Sadly I can't see myself wearing it anymore.

Sécrétions Magnifiques by Etat Libre d'Orange

It's not compelling or challenging. It's not complex or multifaceted. Nothing human at all. The only thing here is screeching chemicals designed, from what I can tell, to bring on an immediate nausea/headache. Deeply unpleasant with absolutely no redeeming qualities.

And that's why, maybe, it's art? Come to your own conclusions about what it means for a perfume called "Sécrétions Magnifiques" to be not only devoid of everything it promises, but a literal assault on physical well-being.

Need to sample rating: 0/10.

Notorious Oud by D.S. & Durga

Smells like a smoky jacket from the thrift store. Delightfully nasty.

Solos: Coriander by D.S. & Durga

Not everything has to be a work of fine art. Some things are beautiful in their utilitarianship. Reminded me a lot of Eau de Lalique. Very nice; quite boring.

Cowboy Grass by D.S. & Durga

Bergamot blast that lasts all of thirty seconds. Sage that lasts ten seconds longer. Here's the cowboy's aftershave, I suppose.

Thirty minutes later it smells exactly like vetiver essential oil mixed with a stale salt-&-pepper packet. Lunch break?

Tempo by Diptyque

Tempo is a mature patchouli kept warm by mate and kept modern by a screaming pink-pepper-reinforced violet leaf that -- unfortunately because it's my favorite note in the composition -- is much more prevalent on paper than my skin.

The frag is unlike anything else I've smelled while the bergamot, violet, and pepper are around. Too bad they aren't around longer. At that point what is left is a patch/powder that is familiar but not a retread -- mature but not old. Unique, but not quite special. Right before the end, the powder clarifies into a warm lavender that rides into the sunset.

It's a perfectly nice patch that defies convention just enough to be an entertaining wear as well as eschew whatever associations patchouli brings immediately to mind.

Ummagumma by Bruno Fazzolari

Of the two FZOTIC offerings I've sampled (Vetiverissimo, Ummagumma), both seem to me to be reimaginings of classic mainstream frags.

In my mind, Fazzolari is not only reinterpreting these, but "doing them right," through a combination of expert mixing and use of ingredients of a strikingly superior quality to the original.

I was surprised not to see Bvlgari Black mentioned here, as Ummagumma is the ideal self of Bvlgari Black -- the tonka note is both more intense here (vegetal, flanked by the vanilla as opposed to ) and better balanced (the chocolate is dry as a bone, which along with the woods, saffron, and incense, corrects Black's cloying sweetness).

The effect is an unmistakeable "Bvlgari Black accord." You'll probably trick those around you into thinking you're wearing Black, except you'll smell better than that, and Ummagumma performs much better.

Performance: 6/10
Sillage: 4/10
Composition: 9/10

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