Reviews of Fat Electrician by Etat Libre d'Orange

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    Way Off Scenter's avatar

    United States United States

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    One of the most appealing scents I’ve tried from the Etat Libre d’Orange line, Fat Electricial is essentially an elegantly balanced two-part structure of incense and vetiver – superbly ironic, given the name. Though dry and even somewhat astringent in its opening, Fat Electrician slowly reveals a velvet-soft, sweet vanillic grace note that plays up the nutty and earthy facets of its vetiver.

    Ironically again, Fat Electrician’s sillage and projection are both relatively understated. After an hour or two’s wear the scent settles into an extended drydown of relatively straightforward warm vetiver. While it’s hardly revolutionary, it is very well-executed, wearable, and attractive. A good vetiver to add to the growing stable that includes Sycomore, Givenchy Vetyver, Encre Noire, Vétiver Extraordinaire, and Etro’s Vetiver.

    13 June, 2014

    2nosedtwin's avatar

    Netherlands Netherlands

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    Etat Libre d'Orange - Fat Electrician
    Yes, there are actually people who smell like this; people like fat electricians who sit around and eat more than do any work, and when they do, they sweat a lot and smell like Fat Electrician. The one and only true inspiration for this perfume must have been without a doubt, a smelly fat electrician, being invited in the house of a perfumer who gained instant inspiration for a new perfume by this encounter....
    Fat Electrician smells like fresh cotton fabric drenched in fresh sweat together with the warm radiation of a 'fat', fleshy-oily, fresh leathery smell of the warmth of fat electrician's skin; a sort of creamy-nutty, dirty-smoky, and spiced-greeny smell. It opens with salty lemonpeel, 'chestnut', fresh vetiver, pepper and a touch of cinnamon, creating a warm dusty, spiced-smoky and gritty texture. It gets rounder and more 'weighted' due to oppoponax, the clever use of medicinal-resinous myrrh and a smooth woody-earthy note of patchouli. The vetiver grows stronger - giving it a crisp and rawish-rooty green note that reminds me of freshly cut paprika and the flesh of olives - before catching a more dirty animalic smokiness with hints of dark chocolate and coffee, that introduces the salty hay-like touched vanilla-pots.
    Fat Electrician keeps a great focus on a smoky, 'weighted' warmth with a counteract of fresh green-juicy notes, resulting in a very potent sour-bitter scentprofile that attracts and turns-off at the same time. A highly original perfume that intrigues from start to finish. Very well done.

    22 May, 2014

    jtd's avatar

    United States United States

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    I can feel the woody amber with my nose, and there is an acetone, shellac, sour plastic quality that I smell as the volatility of the note pulls it away from me.

    And then I don’t really smell anything.

    Great name, perplexing olfactory experience. It comes and goes in 5 minutes. A discrete, tidy performance that leaves me in a chin-scratching state.

    I feel like I should applaud.

    02 November, 2013

    Jaakiem's avatar



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    It's all about opoponox

    Opposites attract even in perfumes. First time I wore this I thought that this was about balance between vetiver and vanilla. Something to excite you and something to sooth you.

    On the second time I didn't notice the vanilla much. I was more thinking about vetiver, or vetivers. It started with some dark vetiver like in Encre noir, but changed gradually to lighter and greener vetiver like in Coeur de Vetiver Sacre.

    But even the vetiver made room for the main player here. I didn't recognise it first, because I haven't smelled it in many perfumes. It was like something dusty and sweaty honey. It was smell familiar from Gucci pour homme II. It was opoponax and there was a lot of it. I would guess that Fat electrician is more of a winter fragrance because of it.

    Next day all that is left from this perfume is some traces of iso E super on your skin.

    In my opinion Fat electrician isn't the best Eldo, but it is very good nevertheless. When many of their best efforts seems to be new interpretations of classic themes, this one is more modern perfume. I could see this one being the most wearable of all Eldos for most younger men.

    22 June, 2013

    Marais's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    ELdO's best?

    One of the best atypical vetivers available. The usual sharp rootiness of vetiver enjoys an unlikely but successful yin/yang partnership with a sweetish powdery accord provided by vanilla/myrrh/opoponax (but mainly vanilla). A touch of incense combines with the vetiver to create a metallic 'blown fuse' aroma in keeping with the name. Worth a try for lovers of Hermes' Vetiver Tonka (which is too sweet for me), Serge Lutens' Vetiver Oriental and even those who think they don't like vetiver. Wearable in all weathers. Projection is moderate, longevity excellent (10 hours from 5 sprays). The only ELdO scent I have found worth purchasing.

    Pros: Unusual, good sillage and longevity
    Cons: none

    07 June, 2013

    warho15's avatar



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    A blast of burnt rubber, followed by a ghostly vetiver sweetened with just a pinch of vanilla and the tiniest amount of fecal musk. Becomes a nondescript wisp of musk and spice rather quickly. Interesting in theory, and smooth in execution. However, impractical in use when compared with its peers.

    If you've ever wished that all the warmth and humor in Bulgari Black was syphoned from the notes of the fragrance to the fragrance's title, this is for you.

    If you like that initial onslaught of burnt rubber at the top to be backed up by just as voracious (and interesting) of a heart and drydown, but like things dry and unsweetened, try "Tea" from CdG's "Series 1: Leaves" or Smell Bent's "Violet Tendencies".

    16 January, 2013

    gimmegreen's avatar

    Netherlands Netherlands

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    Burnt electrical wiring at the start (I kid you not) – this has to be one of the more ingenious manipulations of vetiver. Followed by dry, dry, dry resins with little hints of herbal green. The opoponax-myrrh blend here is top class, and there's an almost eucalyptus like note (the olive leaves?) which merges effortlessly. One of ELDO's stronger offerings – but you've got to have a nose for resins to enjoy it. Sadly, the fun lasts for about 3 hours, after which all that's left is a wooden cupboard.

    08 May, 2012

    BeginnerNose's avatar



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    This smells EXACTLY like Bvlgari Black!

    I get alot of RUBBER, RUBBER, and MORE RUBBER, as well as some vanilla and vetiver. I actually have sprayed "Fat Electrician" on one hand and "Bvlgari Black" and it is very difficult to tell them apart!

    This fragrance is nowhere in the same league as Vetiver Tonka or Sycamore!

    31st March, 2012 (Last Edited: 14 April, 2012)

    housecatmeow's avatar



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    It smells like yoghurt.....

    02 March, 2012

    odysseusm's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Hate it.
    Unnecessarily vanilla-centric, which prevents anything worthwhile appearing from either the vetiver or opoponax/myrrh. Extremely sweet.
    In my opinion, the sweet + vanilla makes for a rather juvenile character.

    11th February, 2012

    Redbeard's avatar

    United States United States

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    This is a bit cursory...testing the very end of a manufacturer sample vial. It opens weak with just a little vanilla, and smells remarkably similar to vanilla extract. Only after a few minutes does the vetiver begin to appear, but it's very subtle. This begins the slow transition to a somewhat greener scent than the topnotes suggested, but also heralds further weakening. It's almost as weak as the vague traces I got from their Secretions Magnifiques...I'm anosmic to the really nasty note there, and I almost wonder if I'm anosmic to some notes in FE too. I start to pick up a bit of cinnamon in the base, but that's about the end of the story. It's nice enough, but still rather plasticky.

    For practical purposes, there's nothing this could do for me that L'Occitane Vetyver hasn't already done at a low price. I really like the vanilla/vetiver combination and I need to find more examples of it (maybe Vetyver Haiti or the Hermessence?), but already FE is way more synthetic-smelling than the L'Occitane. Or if you're more interested in the cinnamon/vanilla combo, there's a whole laundry list of spicy orientals that do the trick better.

    11th September, 2011

    Ralph's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    It's a bit daft saying of a fragrance 'Well, it'd be good if the top notes carried on for longer,' because by definition, they're fleeting. With Fat Electrician though I really do want to say this because the top notes - a dazzlingly bright, sharp, vetiver blast - are glorious. But then they disappear and there's not really a whole lot left after they've gone - well, besides a gentle vanilla and a shadow of the opening vetiver hovering pale in the background. Shame.

    22 July, 2011

    alfarom's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    This is what I call a different take on vetiver. A solid interpretation that is able to emerge in this crowded territory. A fine mixture of opoponax and vetiver laying on a slightly sweet vanilla base and enriched by hints of incense and resinous elements throughout. Easy to wear yet distinctive, simple yet perfectly refined. A nice everyday's fragrance and one of the best releases in the Eldo's range. A valid option if you're looking for a modern masculine but you want to avoid the usual clean-laundered synthetic-citrus loaded with woody maber.

    06 July, 2011 (Last Edited: 27 March, 2012)

    Harvitz81's avatar



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    Very sharp and pungent vetiver opening. Unlike most vetivers though that accentuate this with citrus notes, I like what ELDO does by complimenting this with vanilla and myrrh accords. After drydown it remains pretty linear vetiver accords with hints of myrrh tickling the nose. A very nice new take on vetiver.

    14 June, 2011

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    I understand the reason for “electric” as part of the name: With my first whiff the vetiver / vanilla / opoponax combination smelled like a blast of electricity. The note didn’t last long and the vetiver accord continues on a path of becoming weaker and more synthetic. I’m not getting much more from this fragrance than a not very interesting vetiver / vanilla accord. This is not the first scent I’ve smelled that combines vetiver and vanilla into a fragrance’s dominant accord. I’ve gotten a somewhat similar metallic vetiver in CSP’s Vetyver Haiti, and I wasn’t impressed by that scent either. I’d say that this is an interesting use of vetiver in Fat Electrician, but it’s too metallic, synthetic, and electrical for my taste… and then after that disappointment, it wimps out… disappears from my skin within an hour.

    07 June, 2011

    MissMagic's avatar

    Sweden Sweden

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    Smells exactly like self-tanning-cream!! Salt air, sea, the scent of burning sun, +45 celsius, an over-crowded mad beach by the meditarranean sea, in late july. Synthetic plastic Self-tanning-cream and sweat, sunburnt red bodys... AND myrrh !! Perfume made as an piece of art, so strange - made ugly-beautiful.

    10th May, 2011

    Oh_Hedgehog's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    The name, Fat Electrician, and accompanying thumbnail image are a stroke of brilliance: between two generous handfuls of voluptuous, oppoponax-creamy flesh runs a thin streak of vetiver. We're used to the sometimes exhausting smut of Etat Libre d'Orange, but here they offer us a reserved, sweet vetiver bearing similarities to Chanel's noble Sycomore – a comparison both surprising and delicious.

    ELDO seems to rely on two strategies in general: eat-my-dust innovation (Sécrétions Magnifique, Jasmin et Cigarette) or shameless imitation (Eloge du Traitre is Yatagan reloaded, Je Suis Un Homme takes a stab at Eau Sauvage). Fat Electrician falls into the second category and is a reprise of Molinard's Habanita, but here done so much more convincingly, making Habanita feel like an inept drag queen. This is tenacious, satisfying, and unusually plausible (from this house) as an everyday scent.

    13 April, 2011

    WildThingy's avatar

    Cyprus Cyprus

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    Best vetiver to me. It avoids the one dimensional marine note typical to vetiver in the drydown. In that is is as good as Givenchys Vetyver. But the latter puts to much nuts, milky aldehydes etc in, shifting it to the bold side. The ELdO seems to be light handed, the oppoponax tickles the nose just right. The Fat Electrician rearranges known components of perfumery and achieves a - to me - new effect. I would like it less sweet, though.

    06 March, 2011

    md1grwl's avatar

    United States United States

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    A fragrance that has contrasting parts. A ‘fat’ part, and an ‘electric’ part.

    The “Fat” part:
    Vanilla bean, opoponax and myrrh create this. These base and heart notes lend to a warm vanilla like, semi-gourmand sensual feel. I’m reminded of Givenchy Pi here, but I like FE much more. These notes create a comforting, ‘round’ feel (insert ‘fat’). Very wearable and very likeable

    The “Electrician” part:
    Vetiver baby! This is the sharper, more rooty aspect of vetiver used. Some say it has a ‘metallic’ (insert ‘electric’) sense to it, but I don’t get that whatsoever. It’s a sharp dry vetiver note to me, and as a vetiver lover, there is nothing off putting about it. I’m also highly, highly reminded of the use of vetiver in The Different Company Sel de Vetiver here. FE has that same, semi salty gauzy accord to it.

    The “Fat Electrician” as a whole:
    Overall a very wearable, likeable vetiver/vanilla scent. Its Givenchy Pi with a masculine sharper top. The overall feel is very warm and inviting, without being too ‘gooey’ and over vanilla like which I like (and keeps me away from Givenchy Pi). The salty/dry vetiver creates a very interesting pairing and offsets nicely the warmer opoponax & myrrh. It highly reminds me of Sel de Vetiver which I already own and absolutely love. Its so close I question if its worth owning both… but I’ll probably spoil myself and buy FE too, I like it that much.

    If you’re a fan of Sel de Vetiver, definitely give this a testing.

    19 October, 2010 (Last Edited: 06 February, 2012)

    Gilgamesh2003's avatar

    United States United States

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    Really superb, and more wearable than some of ELdO's more outre offerings. Fat Electrician is basically vetiver and sweet myrrh, which is kind of brilliant since it pairs vetiver's dry, earthy masculinity with the (dry, earthy) feminine sweetness of myrrh. Very sexy and interesting, very high quality ingredients. Check the silly sales narrative that goes along with it (something about a sexually ambiguous electrician from New Jersey) for a laugh. Excellent longevity with demure projection. Bravo!

    10th October, 2010

    upsilon's avatar

    United States United States

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    A light weight, synthetic, wearable, but ultimately forgettable vetiver. The first three things that immediately come to mind upon application are orange, vetiver, and fresh rubber straight from the factory. An interesting mix and worth trying out, especially if you're a fan of vetivers. There is minimal development for the duration of this scent and overall lasting power is average. I've had a fine young lady say she loved this scent, so that counts for something in my book. Never the less, I'll stick to more raw and rugged smelling vetivers for daily wear.

    03 June, 2010

    willem7's avatar



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    This Fat Electrician is my new best friend. Seriously good stuff, executed perfectly. One moment it's warm and embracing, next it's cool and rough. Try it: he'll be your new best friend too.

    14 April, 2010

    bbBD's avatar

    United States United States

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    I have to hand it to Etat Libre d'Orange - their line represents without question a shining beacon of niche perfumery. The whole raison d'etre for niche perfumery should be to provide an alternative to generic, market-research driven and profit-first designer perfume offerings. It feels like a new house pops up weekly, each sporting fancy bottles, high prices, yet totally uninspired fragrances built upon the same aromachemicals that everyone else is using (I'm looking at you "Boadicea the Victorious"). By contrast ELdO fragrances are original from the ground up, they are reasonably priced, and they are among the most creative compositions one can buy. After releasing its original line Etat Libre hasn't come out with too many new scents. The newest, Fat Electrician, carries on the ELdO banner proudly.

    There are countless vetivers fragrances available today. What differentiates all these vetivers is the pungency and specific nature of the vetiver note and what the accompanying notes are. There are many excellent modern vetivers (Sycomore, Vetiver Extraordinaire, Givenchy Vetyver, etc.), but let's face it, if you own one vetiver you need not own the others unless the minutiae of vetiver scents is 'your thing'. Leave it to Etat Libre to make a truly different vetiver scent that is perfectly wearable.

    Fat Electrician's initial vetiver blast is pungent and slightly sharp, yet not overly salty (i.e. Goutal or LezNez). Unlike vetivers that brighten the earthiness of the vetiver note with citrus or contrast the vetiver with something like tobacco, ELdO goes the route of creamy vanilla. Quickly after application a distinct opoponax note opens up - the vetiver is the most prominent note, but the sweet, woody opoponax is there. After opoponax comes myrrh, a note that is most prominent in the base. Moving parallel to the development of these woody notes is 'the vanilla'. Slowly but surely a background of smooth vanilla becomes more and more prominent, but it never fully overtakes the vetiver note that remains in the foreground throughout the composition. By the time Fat Electrician has settled into its base one smells a melange of vetiver and myrrh on a bed of vanilla (and the vanilla itself is not thin, but very rich and creamy). Besides being unique, it smells just damn good... the base (which is long lasting) is my favorite part of Fat Electrician.

    For people about to sample Fat Electrician allow me to warn you that this fragrance operates on a couple levels. Sampling on your arm you will experience something along the lines of what I've described, along with perhaps your own interpretation of notes. The vanilla and background notes seem quite prominent. However when worn on the body, the vetiver note is primarily what you will smell, with the vanilla and woody notes only becoming distinct after a couple hours. Surprisingly the sillage is less robust then most ELdOs, making FE a good choice for situations that call for a more discrete fragrance choice. Longevity is fantastic - once the base settles it will last on the skin for many hours.

    Great for vetiver fans - and also great for people looking for an entree to vetiver fragrances.

    16 January, 2010

    NillaGoon's avatar

    United States United States

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    This doesn't have quite the nuclear vanilla bomb of Bulgari Black, but to me it's definitely a vanilla-dominant fragrance. A bit of smoke, a bit of incense, and of course a long thread of vetiver.

    I'm not a big vanilla fan, but I like this anyway. It's dry enough that the vanilla doesn't come off as cloying or overstated. The dovetailing of the vanilla and the vetiver is quite successful, as is the overall composition.

    A distinctive and very wearable take on vetiver.

    12 January, 2010

    Kaern's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    The next Eldo fragrance has notes of concrete and bumcrack and is named 'Bob the Builder' Yeh , looking forward to that.
    The Fat Electrician comes at you as hard as nails and takes no prisoners with its wood/green/ vetiver blast -- it's tremendous. You think 'this won't last' but the molecules used must be really fat and it goes on for hours until gradually softening to a creamy vetiver note. This is like a supercharged Encre Noire. Daft name -- magnificent piece of work.

    25 November, 2009

    irish's avatar

    Mexico Mexico

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    I am not sure why Vibert says that this is ironic. I am a fat electrician :D, and the combination of opoponax and vetiver reminds me of the smell of that varnish with which the wire of a coil is insulated. All of a sudden I remembered myself opening boxes of PLCs, motors and drives. This is a delicious smell and it has just the right amount of vanillic sweetness (very similar to the one found in Ambre Gris by Balmain) to give it some dimension. As it dries down, the syrupy vanilla vanishes and the incense and vetiver become very dry, which reduces the elegance but increases the seriousness. Perhaps in there you will find the irony. The only problem is that it has no projection or longevity whatsoever.

    19 November, 2009

    kb2003's avatar

    United States United States

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    I'm but a budding perfumista myself, so I can't say how Fat Electrician compares to other vetivers, but I can say it's helped me realize that vetiver is among my absolute favorite notes. I really love the smokiness of the opening and on my skin the myrrh/opoponax and that perfectly subtle, mellow, barely-there vanilla harmonize beautifully and temper the vetiver perfectly. I was deciding between this and Rien and am very glad I spent my money on a bottle of Fat Electrician. Sillage is not quite what I was hoping but longevity is excellent.

    UPDATE: A few months on, I have now tried a cornucopia of other vetiver frags, and Fat Electrician still ranks at the top (along with Sycomore, Etro Vetiver and Sel de Vetiver).

    13 November, 2009 (Last Edited: 12 March, 2010)

    Caltha's avatar

    Sweden Sweden

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    The topnotes of Fat Electrician seems to radiate heat the way some amber fragrances do: not smoky but steamy, like a sauna. I find the effect very pleasant. The rest of the scent is vetiver, just vetiver. It starts with the rooty aspect of vetiver - not dry/dirty/earthy but smooth and polished, a little sweetish and vaguely buttery, the face of vetiver that tends to make me a little queasy I'm afraid. It then morphs into a fresher and greener aspect of vetiver with a juicy tartness that I appreciate more. And that's really all I have to say about it. There are so many vetivers out there...

    02 November, 2009

    Somerville Metro Man's avatar

    United States United States

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    Etat Libre D'Orange Fat Electrician

    The more things I wear from Etat Libre D'Orange the more I realize how much I like the risks the House takes. One of the noses for the House who has regularly seemed to connect with my sensibilities is Antoine Maisondieu. Three of my favorites, Noel au Balcon, Vierges et Toreros and Rossy de Palma, are his compositions. When I heard M. Maisondieu had done a "semi-modern vetiver" for the line I knew the 2009 release Fat Electrician would be interesting, and it is. Fat Electrician has the most in common with Vierges et Toreros of the three scents I mentioned previously. It has a strength around its central note that pushes the envelope. Much like the raw leather accord in Vierges et Toreros the vetiver in Fat Electrician comes off rawer and more unrefined than it does in other scents. I like it because it makes it stand out from those other vetivers that I own. The description that comes in the box claims M. Maisondieu is trying to create a "white, metallic, silver' vibe at the top. I'm not sure I get that, what I get is a raw green, grassy accord with a healthy amount of cigarette. This is carried forward into the heart where the vetiver comes in quite intensely and quite green. The smokiness of the cigarettes combine marvelously with the edgy pungent vetiver. The transition into the base, again, according to the note list is supposed to be a gourmand-like "chestnut creme". I don't get that at all as instead I get a great resinous mix of opoponax and myrrh which really finishes it nicely on me. I think I'm pretty thankful that the gourmand notes don't appear on me as I think I might not like this as well as I do if they were present. Fat Electrician has great longevity and decent sillage. Fat Electrician is different than any of the vetivers I currently own and while I think it is definitely worth a try by any vetiver lover it is not going to be one loved by every one of those vetiver lovers. If you do like your vetiver on the strong side invite a Fat Electrician over you might find him to be more interesting than you might think.

    19 September, 2009

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