Comme des Garçons, 2010
Nose: Antoine Lie
Hmmmmm… Now we’re talking! Finally an attention-gabbing and beguiling scent that one would expect from the brand that made itself famous for that exactly: captivating imagination and a little punk. The intro is about incense delicately wrapped up in a fruity voile perhaps? A pinch of bergamot and pepper? Nothing of the ‘church-fondness of incense insane incarnations in CdG Incense Series 3 (I love them all!). Très! There is a faint association with the Ombre Indigo fragrance from the Olfactive Studio, which also plays with incense and hesperidia notes. However, there is nothing that as strong between the two to forge a comparative perspective: just a memory and invocation in the best possible sense, without any duel. ‘Ah, lovely!’ I am inclined to say. And so pleased to have something new and amusing to turn my attention to! (After a rather big disappointment with another Comme des Garçons offer: the Amaizngreen perfume.
Hmmm, rather quickly (perhaps even too quickly!), a warm and douce shawl of gaïacwood and cashmeran magic sweetheart woos the fragrance into comfortable plushness. Ah, Wonder-wood indeed! I can guess the familiar melange of cedarwood as well, but not sure about cristalon and carvi grains as I have not come across these notes before, and hence wouldn’t be able to name them.
That Wonderwood made me thirst for one of my favourite oolong teas: tie guan yin. It is exquisitely fine treat of pale straw-greenish-yellow colour, very transparent and elusive in flavour, yet distinct and clearly woody, with dry hay tonalities. Wonderwood is not, however, a dry, burnt wood; it is not intensely smokey. Rather, I find it to be a wood that is no more: a trace, that which has left of it. With a dab of ashes and traces of lingering smoke in the corners… The prominence of the cedarwood is rising (and inevitably calling upon my another strong favourite: Lalique’s Encre Noir, which has become something of a benchmark for me, in terms of smoky, (cedar)woody, inky, incensey field of references. There is also a familiar semblance to Silvan by Rouge Bunny Rouge, no, actually not, wrongly phrased. It is not Wonderwood’s semblance to Silvan, but Silvan has that semblance to Wonderwood, which by the token of a comparison, comes across as more thorough and complex in orchestration and performance. Wonderwood fragrance feels much more alive, beaming with forceful energy of nature and technology (for it is for me, as natural as is technological a perfume, all said in good spirit with no mean criticism of ‘technology’).
The perfume is sharp and ready, and continues to be so far. There was that short one puff of sweet shawl cashmere, but a short-lived one; as that one odd note deliberately hidden into the carefully scripted sonata, the odd note that just highlights the consequence and thorough carefulness of the composition.As the fragrance dries down, it also becomes somewhat more complex, perhaps richer and more nuanced in the ‘smelling texture’ of the fragrance. Wonderwood at those late stages comes across as more velvety instead of shimmering glossiness; cut drying wood, with vetiver markers.
Notes: Madagascan Pepper, Bergamot, Somalian Incense, Nutmeg, Cristalon, Cashmeran, Gaïac wood, Cedarwood, Carvi graines, Javanol, Sandalwood, Vetiver, Oud (Agarwood)
Other perfume reviews of Wonderwood by Commes des Garçons:
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