Most rose fragrances come away fairly dark and heavy, like C&S's No. 88 or most of Amouage's other offerings. Other times, the inclusion of Damascone causes what Turin describes as a "cooked" smell, like rose jam, found in Killian's Liasons Dangerous.
I am glad to report that Homage is neither. The rose is apparent right from the beginning, but this is a different rose, lighter, clearer, and majestic. It is not quite like a freshly crushed rose, but it lacks the dark intensity of many other rose fragrances, instead a constant clear whistle, perfect in mid-pitch. The frankincense is also apparently from the top notes. It starts a little acrid, a little sharp almost, but quickly mellows to smoothness. There may be some oud or citrus, but if they are there, they are so well blended that I cannot pick them out, instead acting as complements to the rose and frankincense to lift them up and give them lightness and complexity.
As this is a perfume oil, the top and mid notes are virtually nonexistent. You basically hit the dry-down right away, and it is wonderful (no alcohol to burn off, etc etc). Instant gratification.
I will say this much -- this rose is unique. It is sweet, yes, but not syrupy. It is not "butched up" with a whole lot of woods or spices, as with some of amouage's male offerings, but somehow the ingredients feel clear and crisp enough to be unisex. If you stand some amount of sweetness, this is a fantastic fragrance for guys.
The fragrance lasts, I find, reasonably long, but have not tested this aspect significantly. Siliage is pretty good. I wouldn't call it "godzilla" siliage, but it's nothing to scoff at either. An easy foot-long "aura" is projected with a couple dabs (which is all you really need).
That said, it is costly. Sample before you buy, because a mistake is going to hurt your wallet a lot.
17th December, 2008