Perfume Directory

Opus X (2016)
by Amouage

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Opus X information

Year of Launch2016
GenderShared / Unisex
AvailabilityIn Production
Average Rating
(based on 19 votes)

People and companies

HouseAmouage

About Opus X

Inspired by the red Mendelssohn Stradivarius that inspired the film "The Red Violin".

Reviews of Opus X

I had high hopes for Opus X, as I like a scandalous rose, and the howls of outrage over the metal and varnish notes of this one made my anticipation keener. So I was completely unprepared for the rather flat and watered-down reality that initially greeted my nostrils.
Opus X doesn’t give the wearer rose so much as rose water, the stuff an adventurous grocer will sell you for a couple of bucks. This is then accented by a pepper-and-smoke wood note (the ‘oud’), cloaked in something solvent-like, with a curdled suggestion of damp leather. It all seemed a bit too low-key and desultory, making it hard to take seriously or with any enthusiasm. Just when I was thinking: ‘nice set of fantasy notes, shame about the execution’, everything slotted into place and came to rest as a rather novel whole. Opux X is cool-warm, somewhat sour, and distanced by its pane-like slick of varnish.
However after a period of some hours, that varnish begins to dissipate and a rose and greenish geranium accord play out the perfume in the manner of Une Rose’s less angry sister. The perfume actually seems to gather strength as the rose theme comes more and more into focus during the course of the wear. Not an instant love, but it turned me around in the end.
It may not be the most arresting of Amouage’s offerings, but is further proof of the house’s willingness to take risks under Christopher Chong’s creative direction.
18th January, 2019
Opus X is an absolute star! I have been into weird roses scents lately and adore this metallic, red roses composition with lovely woody base. The scent is not heavy at all. It comes and goes throughout the day. It is totally different than anything else I own. Moreover, it is also quite different and highly recognizable, distinguished among so many rose fragrances on the market. Dare and try it out!
07th January, 2019
And finally in Amouage's Library Collection, Opus X.

My impression: Metallic woody rose, sharp and uniquely bold. There's the unusual addition of petrol-like varnish, reflecting violin varnish in the spirit of the movie this fragrance was inspired by ("The Red Violin").

Definitely leans in the feminine direction with the preponderance of many things rose, along with ylang ylang. Love the bottle design!
14th August, 2018
This has been on my radar since I first heard of its release early in 2016, but samples have eluded me until 2 days ago. As luck would have it, I made a rare stop at The Perfume House and asked to sample just this one perfume, which had just come in. Since they could not find a tester they offered me one of the official samples in one of Amouage's little boxes. Looks like about 2-3ml to me.

There are not many reviews of Opus X out there and what follows are my thoughts. I will preface my thoughts by saying I love roses, have grown hundreds of old and new varieties. Perfumes however sometimes go in a feminine and powdery direction which I personally avoid. I have a few rose centric scents but not many.

Opus X starts with yes, a nice blast of rose but one I can't completely identify. It does not have any of that citrusy top note, but most of that sumptuous middle. This rose is round and full but not sharp if that makes any sense. What could have been a choking (and unattractive to my nose) powderiness is saved by an unusual greenness and a strong metalic quality. I sense that after the initial top notes fade, geranium becomes almost as big of a player as the rose. I can understand people equating the metalic note as "bloody", but to me bloody has a coppery smell and this seems more like iron rust. Into this add an interesting varnish accord and you have this scent's initial profile.

But after an hour or so there is a period where this does become an old violin, or something akin to that. I was reminded of an old varnished bookcase that held an ancient Encyclopedia Britannica that belonged to my Grandmother. Once in a while we would pull one of those old books out and there was a woody, musty smell and something about Opus leaves the impression of age.

As the scent dries down it becomes a nice amber (ambrarome I guess) with a barely noticeable tame oud note with hints of incense...and the aura of rose.

This is a very plesent scent, not feminine at all, nor would I call it masculine. It is an experience anyone could enjoy, but it is different. I don't think I would recommend this scent to a beginner but many experienced folks would at least appreciate the artistry behind this. I consider this to be a top notch release from Amouage and one I expect to add to my collection.

My initial impressions only. Your mileage may vary.
02nd May, 2017
Slumbering my way down the line of modern Amouage releases, I tripped over Opus X and was jolted awake. Not rose, I thought, but rhubarb and custard sweets, with a green note so acid that it could strip the enamel from my teeth and the protective lining from my tongue. Amazing – superb! A metallic, oxidized rose that will either slit you or crumble away into dried blood flakes.

The convoluted Amouage back story makes sense this time – a 1681 violin maker loses his wife in childbirth, and sobbing, he rubs her blood into the rosin of the violin he is making so as to allow some part of her to live on forever. The story, told in the 1998 film, “Red Violin,” has the violin passing from generation to generation, causing sorrow wherever it goes.

The perfume contains four rose oils and accords – cabbage rose, a “bloody rose” accord, rosebud, and rose oxide – perhaps representing the different emotions the violin has paid witness to over the years. Most startling is that rose oxide note, which drenches the heart in a noxious, metallic bitterness that smells like heartbreak and spilled blood. The fragrance turns on a geranium axis, its peculiar blue-green rosiness providing a petroleum-on-a-puddle gleam that snaps your head to attention. There is possibly some oud in this, but I can really only smell the metallic rose and green leaves.

And it’s oddly familiar, in a comforting way. It is perhaps the rusty blood and geranium sheen from Rossy de Palma (Etat Libre d'Orange), or the faint rhubarb-and-custard creaminess from Tocade (Rochas) – maybe even a bit of that bitterness of the rose oxide from Dom Rosa (Les Liquides Imaginaires). All these fragrances share an ability to needle you and rub your tongue raw with sharp, metallic accents while beguiling you with a softer, milkier side that makes you forgive it its jarring sharpness. The overall effect is truly very striking.

It’s brave of Amouage (and Christopher Chong) to put out another rose-centric fragrance so close to the orbit of the almighty Lyric Woman. But Opus X is so different from Lyric’s smoky, rubied orientalism that these two roses might pass each other by in a dark alley one night, blissfully unaware that they are of the same species. It’s also amazing to me that Amouage found a new angle on the rose-oud theme, even if I don’t really get the oud component here (no loss, believe me).

Opus X is so unlike what I expect from Amouage, actually, and I suspect that most people would struggle to fit Opus X into their expectations and picture of Amouage. Maybe that’s why Opus X has flown so low under the radar. Well, it’s on mine now.
03rd October, 2016
A metallic rose. I am a fan of rose fragrances, the good ones, and tried this on my skin. It projects rather a natural rose that shines through, but via a metallic prism. The metallic note is rather penetrating and may be due to the 'varnish' or solvent note mentioned.

I am afraid it did not work out for me. I much rather go with Lyric Man which is one of my favourite fragrances.
22nd June, 2016

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