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I had forgotten how "barbershoppy" the opening is on this one, with moderately sweet but very sharp spices (and unfortunately the alcohol really smells strong in this one). It's got a little lemon and lavender, but it's mostly bold cinnamon and nutmeg, with the bright herbal note of the juniper cutting through it. I'm not sure if they've added just a trace of vanilla, but something that's in here right from the very top notes acts as a slightly sweet, smoothing influence over the spices, keeping them in check. It's very dusty in spite of how resinously sweet it is, and gets more medicinal as the base wears on. The base is frankly disappointing compared to the great top notes. I can see why people place this on the spectrum between Epicea and BdP...I'd say this is more convincingly woody than the super-weak former, but doesn't get as heavy into florals as the latter. What bothers me is that there is a plastic-ness to it all, almost like slightly burnt insulation; I'm sure incense fans would just say it's incense, but it doesn't quite sit right with me because it's unpleasantly smoky and burnt. Arguably reminiscent of a roaring fireplace perhaps.
04 November, 2011