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OK, so here's the legendary Angel. For all the drama and notoriety, it's not nearly as sickly sweet as I had imagined it would be.
So what does it smell like? Well, its that synergy that happens when patchouli and vanilla mix and it smells like burnt caramel. It's got lavender and some sort of aromatic green menthol-ish herb on top for brightness. It's also got a milky note, so it kind of smells like dulce de leche, the caramel you get from heating a can of evaporated condensed milk. There's also an animalic undertone, a sort of vaguely poopy sweaty smell like a very dirty child (which was especially unnerving when mixed with the milk smell), as well as some sort of fruits and chocolate. But it all came together to smell like a multi-layered caramel smell with lots of bright non-gourmand aromatics and a thin layer of gross underneath.
Time has proven that you can add almost anything to this Angel formula and get gold. From A*Men and its flankers to the hundreds of gourmands influenced by Angel, this really has launched a revolution. And that's my main issue with Angel - After smelling it with smoke and coffee and malt and woods and cotton candy and licorice and leather and everything else that's been thrown at it, Angel seems a little less compelling than its spawn. The only thing that Angel brings to the table that's missing from its descendants is that gross animalic milk smell, which was the part I didn't like. Aside from its general loudness, I have no technical issues with Angel, but I'd personally much rather wear A*Men or New Haarlem, which take the Angel structure in directions I like better.
05th November, 2012