Norma Kamali Incense (1985)
    by Norma Kamali




    Average Rating: 4

    Based on 39 ratings
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    Norma Kamali Incense information

    Norma Kamali Incense is a women's fragrance by Norma Kamali. The scent was launched in 1985

    Reviews of Norma Kamali Incense


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    Showing 1 to 6 of 17 reviews.
    positive 17 Positive Reviewsneutral2 Neutral Reviewsnegative No Negative Reviews

    the_good_life's avatar

    Germany Germany

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    Transcends perfume as commercial product. Or simply something that smells nice. Transends perfume as craft or art even. It manages to capture the entire cultural, sacral, ritual dimension of incense and incense burning, the presence of the divine, the link to a higher realm, the spiritual becoming one with the animalic. Completely uncomprimising, one of the greatest olfactory statements ever on the human condition. Beautiful, beatitude, a moment of experiencing, unadulterated, the "terrible sublime" that is the cosmos and our existence.

    03 June, 2014

    Colin Maillard's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    Incense by Norma Kamali opens with a buckload of black, sticky, warm oil pouring straight out of a reservoir, pungent and ultra dense, the Holy Grail of biomechanicism fetishists. I have a friend who is crazy for Ballard and his "Crash" and all that human-machine eroticism, I instantly thought of him. Tobacco notes, wet and humid, a slight fruity vibe and obviously an incense cloud, so black, dusty, dense, organic and cloying you won't even recognize it at first. A beautiful chorus of nuances, from dusty to rancid, to even floral and balsamic, but most of all, a tar-like industrial heaviness. Black and sticky like some of the blacker, stickier Slumberhouse scents, just less experimental and less "de-structured": more of a simple buckload of this ultra-dense decaying blackness. The mood is again that same post-atomic urban decay, with a mechanic/industrial feel, as this is more close to the smell of oils, tar, production wastes. Some notes I get from this epitome-of-gloominess: woods, green poisonous notes, some "heavy" floral notes like perhaps narcissus, frankincense, labdanum, ambroxan... that's what I smell, but I may be completely wrong, it's like rescuing birds from contaminated sea they're all black and sticky. It does not evolve much, it just kind of gets drier and denser, like a piece of black wood drying under the sun. To be really honest, as far as I admire the composition, I can not come to get excited for this an to really "love" this (as I expected). I love incense, but here is so (brilliantly!) turned into a gigantic, heavy industrial fog, with an oily, indolic materic density and a touch of decadent rancid notes, that it's just a bit too much for me, I mean to make me want to actually wear it. It's utterly fascinating and well-done, one of the purest black compositions I have ever tried, with an unforgiving dry cedar-birch drydown which persists for ages, but I like this more as a "smell", as a creation to smell it per se, without wearing it. Not for everyone and sadly not for me either, but apart from this, superb.

    8,5-9/10

    21st May, 2014

    stargarden's avatar

    United States United States

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    This stuff is biblical. It is powerful. It is a touchstone upon which all incense fragrances must bow. I am glad I have a small amount of this in my fragrance library to treasure for years. A little dab'll do ya for sure. It's the best incense fragrance I have ever encountered.

    31st March, 2014 (Last Edited: 09 April, 2014)

    rynegne's avatar

    United States United States

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    This is the epitome of a great incense fragrance. Norma Kamali Incense is other worldly and it's an absolute shame that it's been discontinued.

    Top notes are brash combination of dry/cut wood and almost a pine tar/turpentine smell that subsides over quite some time and give way to a wonderful semi-sweet labdanum/frankincense/myrrh combination. NK is atomic in terms of both projection...longevity and sillage with day long staying power. Not for the faint of heart, but for every true lover of incense fragrances.

    18 February, 2014

    Akahina's avatar

    United States United States

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    best incense perfume period

    My shortest review ever.

    Straight up frankensense and myrrh. Lasts 24 hours plus. Great projection. Pretty linear but who cares with this beauty? Simultaneously dry, smoky and a touch sweet. One drop is all you need. If there is a holy grail, this may be it.

    Pros: long lasting and powerful
    Cons: almost impossible to find"

    25 October, 2013

    deadidol's avatar



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    The holy grail of incense perfumery

    This review is based upon the recently discovered 1982 vintage cask.??

    This is a very strong, breath-takingly bone dry incense that deploys minimalism to great effect. Rather than simply reproducing a wearable incense scent la Avignon, Kamali captures a true aesthetic head-space that might be described as a cold, stone room that hasn't seen the light of day for years. It's dark and extremely musty with the prominent copal note that makes this smell more like the ashy remains of incense rather than a fresh, unlit batch.??

    This is not an interpretation of "fragrant" incense like you might find in the CdG line or Sahara Noir; instead, it's highly mimetic: tarry, waxy, and deep. There's nothing like this out there, and a tiny amount is all that this perfume requires to achieve its effects for an entire day. Just don't expect anything pretty -- this is more of a challenge than you might think.

    ??But in that respect, it's a work of art.

    Pros: Intensely mimetic recreation of church incense. Deep, beautiful, powerful.
    Cons: Intensely mimetic and therefore somewhat linear and cold.

    24 June, 2013

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