Like most of the scents in the line, Enslaved sounds like it was inspired by an E.L. James novel. The scent is a xerox of a classical chypre: herbalized citrus and spicy florals over a mossy base. The opening is sharp and bitter, and then it dawdles along on vetiver and lavender for much of the middle. Over time it sweetens up into a vanilla ice cream thing, but I’d still file it as a chypre over an oriental. Although it seems polished overall, it’s derivative and soulless — all veneer with little substance, and frankly, it’s boring. Decent construction, but uninspired and anachronistic.
Gorgeous neo-classic mossy-chypre vetiver with an initial dissonant/acid grassy-hesperidic (pungent-wet) spark and a really powdery-"chyprey" dry down rich of waxiness, talkiness, woody saltiness, rosey laundriness, mossiness, soapiness and honeyed-ambery-eliotropic animalic powder. Yes, scents a la Molinard Habanita, Guerlain L'Heure Bleue (the latter more than the others), Amouage Gold Woman, Carnation Mona di Orio, Caron Bellodgia, La Perla, Maai Bogue and further jump on mind, each of them for several of its facets. Anyway Roja Dove Enslaved boasts an its own proper individuality, represented by a persisting fruity-leafy-grassy-lemony-spicy acidity (with vetiver-mastered "fluidy/powdery" undertones), which produces for a while a "pleasantly grotesque" plastic undertone a la CdG Odeur 71. Carnation, jasmine, geranium, lime and vetiver represent the wet, vegetal, dissonant, spicy core of the aroma, something leading finally the transition towards the chypre "beastly-mossy-vintage" dry down. I detect till the end of the trip this sort of "vinegar-like" acidity (or better humid-dissonant-floral grassiness) as persisting olfactory background perfectly coexisting with a quite aromatic talkiness (so aromatic-powdery to appear almost joined by a cloud of ammonia- probably the effect from animalic patterns combined with cloves, cumin, aldehydes, lemon-vetiver and cinnamon). A touch of civet in the blend? Finally the vetiver jumps on the stage as veritable standout note in the middle of the gorgeous "visceral" powder. A juice for the lovers of tradition which manages in this case to be equally modern and at same time complex-multifaceted. A serious thumbs up.
Enslaved by Roja Dove is basically a sort of watered down, pale rip-off of a prototypical dark feminine chypre halfway Cuir de Russie, Shalimar without the vanilla note, and above all Habanita by Molinard, to which Enslaved is almost identical – with an infinitely less appealing texture and power. If you are familiar with such type of scents, the composition is probably already clear to you: a (pretending-to-be) sumptuous, austere, dark, classy and sophisticated leathery chypre, dirtied by a frame exuding animalicness, lusciousness, smoke, heavy herbal notes, humid decadent flowers, earthy-mossy notes, a general gloominess mixed with a heavenly, powdery and soapy cloud of brighter flowers – light and dark, innocence and sin (and bla, bla, bla). As a perfume itself, it's nice, decently rich, and you can smell all its efforts to show some of the power of classic chypres which it takes its inspiration from; but with today's materials and approach to perfumery, it's quite a hard goal. However, as I said, it's nice: at a completely insane and megalomaniac price, but nice. My personal advice would be... try it if you want, but look for the classic, and leave alone such derivative copycats.
Enslaved (Parfum concentration) is an "unconventional Oriental". Oriental? Yes, but an head almost Chypre, whitout being a Chypre. There is a strange complexity, fascinating, which whisks you way; but it's smooth and dense like a balm.
Enslaved refers to the mind many masterpieces of the past, touches them, but goes beyond. A smooth geranium in top with hints of carnation (after the radiant light of the citrus) that could be L'Origan by Coty. A leathery heart with Jasmine of Grasse which is warmed by Cedarwood with its waxy-milky hand in place of the cloying Sandalwood. A rich Heliotropian-Vetiver with nuances of Vanilla and Ambregris that suggest an Habanita with reflection of Shalimar and Heure Blue.
For me, an enigmatic masterpiece, certainly controversial... but that reverses the Oriental concept in a mix of dissonances that make it sparkling.
Agreed. A better Habanita. Which makes it good.