Perfume Directory

Bohemian Black (2012)
by House of Matriarch


Bohemian Black information

Year of Launch2012
GenderShared / Unisex
AvailabilityIn Production
Average Rating
Not enough ratings.

People and companies

HouseHouse of Matriarch
PerfumerChristi Meshell

About Bohemian Black

Bohemian Black is a shared / unisex perfume by House of Matriarch. The scent was launched in 2012 and the fragrance was created by perfumer Christi Meshell

Reviews of Bohemian Black

Interesting mix of incense, woods and florals. Everything I've tried from HoM is dirty, dark and brooding and this one follows suit. Performance is nice, longevity is around 7-8 hours and is powerful enough to get noticed.
27th February, 2017
For the first hour, this is deep, resinous, ambery, citrussy goodness. The floral notes aren't obvious at first, but I catch a whiff of honeyed pollen; most likely the honeysuckle note. There's also a touch of incense, & a very nice, smooth sandalwood beneath it all. After this promising initial phase, however, all of these notes vanish to leave a very soft, powdery, white floral accord. Now I love a big white floral, but this one merely whispers, & it's oddly disappointing after that wonderful beginning. It fades fast too, & is pretty much gone six hours in, with no discernable base notes to round it off.
If I were in the mood for a soft white floral, the drydown of this one might do just fine, but the opening phase promised so much more. I am left feeling cheated, & also frustrated by the poor performance of this one.
28th January, 2016
Bohemian Black opens with a really peculiar blend reminding me of classic masculine warm citrus-floral-woody scents like Eau Sauvage or Caron’s Third Man, mixed with a thick, “round” and kind of nostalgic floral-aldehydic bouquet as in vintage chypres – say, Guerlain’s Chamade. This, with a sprinkle of modern creativity: a sort of sparkling boozy note (a boozy citrus, specifically), a sweet-resinous dark and warm choco note. That boozy note is supposed to evoke “limoncello” liquor, and – trust an Italian on this – it perfectly nails it: the smell in Bohemian Black is exactly that. A sweet, citric, thick and syrupy boozy aroma. I admire Christi Meshell’s work on this scent, which seems like a Rubik’s cube to recompose together: several different nuances, a sort of schizophrenic dark hybrid between an indolic-floral chypre, a pine-citrus barbershop fougère, a resinous gourmand, a fresh boozy scent. Joyful and summery on one side, somber and autumnal on the other. And a dozen of different tones singing together, from dusty warm resins to the citric booziness, through a classic jasmine-based floral accord and that “uncle’s aftershave” feel. Mad, if you ask me; but incredibly solid and really well put together, a really fun and clever “detournement” of several classic canons with a contemporary approach. A geometric kaleidoscope smelling refined and intriguing, extremely harmonic and pleasant despite the coexistence of so many different notes and inspirations. The main flaw? Just take a stopwatch with you when you spray this, ‘cause in a matter of some dozens of minutes it will be all gone. As much bizarre, colorful, interesting and bold at first, as then settling on a floral-woody, amber-patchouli drydown smelling quite plain, linear, almost openly cheap. Like many (too many!) niche scents, it “says it all” within the first hour, then a boring, weak drydown. Contrary to the inspiration which it seems to quote, since vintage chypres and fougères are often brilliant essays of how to master the drydown of a fragrance. Still nice overall, but too costly for being that cool for just one hour or so.

06th April, 2015
Not much new to add to the reviews below except that this is another winner from House of Matriarch and it surprisingly performs better on clothing than my skin. My skin eats this up but projects nicely on my shirt.
15th October, 2014
Bohemian Black is kind of manic; its personality is all over the place, making it hard to pin down exactly what it is.

It kicks off with the limoncello accord—an Italian liqueur traditionally made from the peel of lemons, steeped in rectified spirits, and then mashed up with syrup. Hasty research tells me that, like fragrance, limoncello is either mass-produced commercially or is hand-made by independent artisans. The taste, it seems, can vary between rough, smooth, tart, and sweet, yet the lemon that opens Bohemian Black is sweet, but not diabetically so. In fact, it’s hard to tell where the lemoncillo stops and where the amber-y heart begins.

Oddly, I get a coniferous undertone from this scent—almost a fougere-like effect, but one that’s buried under layers of thick resins. But I register this as odd because I don’t think there are any traditional fougere components at work. Yet when I sniff really close from the initial application (before the components have sorted themselves out), I pick up something akin to the cannabis tincture from Blackbird, which could be responsible for this murky “green” note that I’m detecting. This phantom fern effect strikes me as a bit of a fun throwback to big ‘80s weirdos like Salvador Dali pour Homme, but it also hints at Guerlain’s more woodsy offerings.

And like Blackbird, Bohemian Black continues the countercultural conversation by marrying a sort of aesthetic of subversion to something quite dark. Of course bohemians run the historical gamut from the Dandy to the Beat to the Gypsy to the Hippie, in addition to their emergence from specific locales and historical periods. I’d locate this scent within the latter half of the 20th century—specifically in a Woodstock-type setting, but I’d imagine that there’s some flexibility in what it evokes for others.

At its core, it’s an amber scent in which sweetness is offset by modest florals. You get depth and dimension, yet it’s fairly linear (at least once the lemon has subsided), and it could be framed perhaps as a complex oriental. Resins and smoke are present, but are more structural than spot lit. There’s a delicacy to the way the combination of notes is handled, but it does produce quite a swirl that makes singling out individual facets a challenge. Apparently, some of the herbal notes were inspired by another Italian liqueur called Strega, but it’s difficult to identify just how this inspiration worked its way into the scent. Essentially, it’s a warm, candied lemon-and-amber affair that’s smooth from top to bottom.

With that said, it’s no Blackbird—but to be fair, there are very few scents come close to touching that one. Bohemian Black ascribes to similarly subversive themes, but it also allows room for your imagination to go nuts. It could be a gourmand, a woody aromatic, an oriental—it’s all of these things, yet it doesn’t conform to any single one of them. It’s dark and moody, buoyant and rich. It’s essentially a series of paradoxes. And in that sense, it really is bohemian.
05th June, 2014
Exactly what Le Comte de Montecristo could have worn during his obsessed wander and probably my ultimate "palatin/gothic" potion. Dark, decadent, structured (a classically chypre-waxy structure with dark-mysterious tentacles) and hypnotic as an obscure Duke of the nineteenth-century darkness. Bohemian Black transudes mystic charme and damnation. This fragrance owns texture and complexity, classic honeyed chypre refinement and modern-chic languid sophistication, all at once poetic romanticism, olfactory art-deco and underground funky-beat (a tad Guerlain Habit Rouge a bit CN Scent Intense). Despite the "stout" sillage the aroma performs a sort of kaleidoscopic vibrant blue-red-violet "jungle-garage" doping aggression and a sort of honeyed/dirty "wet hair type" spicy-ambery carnality with no compromises. I detect by soon an incredibly beautiful boozy and aromatic lime (the Limoncello effectively notable presence) followed after twenty minutes by "ambiental" frankincense with a touch of smoke joined by spices (nutmeg or cloves), dirty amber and vintage earthiness (probably dark patchouli) immediately reached by almost powdery honey, subtle floral patterns (i absolutely detect a romantic and whispering jasmine), soothing balsams, powdery woods and woody resins. I detect a general velvet atmosphere with a touch of boots polish effect, hint of bohemian stuffiness and dark resinousity. Honey, amber, a touch of oakmoss and jasmine perform a sort of otherworldly velvety languid decadence which manages to be anyway vibrant, naughty and glamour in order the wearer to boldly reigh in the top downtown hyper chic and fashionable metropolitan smoky venue. The honey/amber/woody-resins agreement is highly resinous, slightly vintage but timeless and animalic, absolutely erotic and elegant. The dry down is woody for sure with a plain sandalwood vibe but I still detect honey, floral patterns and resins. During the high class défilé inside the old theatre Bohemian Black stands out exactly like the most forbidding of the lords, a cultured, severe, moody fellow with a sinister story muffled by the ghostly rooms of his building out of the city. For all the highlanders survived across the wars and dearths of the Centuries , this potion is for you, just just for you.
19th May, 2014 (last edited: 05th September, 2015)

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