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The topnotes of this scent is very wierd in a funky sort of way. The advertisement for this tries to sell Obsession as a sex juice. The ads are black and white to symbolise a universal quality that trancends race and culture. Is obsession the sex juice of the 80s then? You wouldn't think so based on the topnotes. In my opinion, the topnotes is more of the midnotes rearranging themselves. Many artisinal fragrances do this eg. Piper Nigrum, Virgilio, Yerbamate etc. I don't mind it but it takes some getting used to. Try the original Burberry(1981) to get a stronger feel of Obsession's topnotes.
The midnotes is what i want to focus on. This is where the magic happens. You get a mellowing of the topnotes into something very sexy. It is the appearance of the first gourmand notes that take my breath away. Chocolatey creamy but not so much rich as sharp and aromatic because the gourmand accord is made with woody notes of Rosewood and Pine needle mixed with oriental notes of vanilla and amber. Very nice, it is a movement and combination to produce the gourmand note. Not like say, Amen where you get the chocolates straight away... albeit after the tar . Obsessions' gourmand note needs/has to be constructed. It slowly emerges from the chaos of the topnotes. Most interestingly, this gourmand note has added pungency through the addition of a red berries note. This sweetens the gourmand so you don't get dark chocolates, just a sweet milky coco-like effect. The most interesting accord in the fragrance IMO. Chanel took this accord to make Allure (not a statement of fact, just to give a rough idea of the accord i'm talking about.) This is the accord that makes obsession so obsessive and a classic. But what takes it away from the mold of Amen or Body Kouros is the persistent greeness (pine needles) that is in the background. Makes for a highly original scent though.
If you do not like Obsession it is probably because you find the greeness a little too discordant with the gourmand or simply cannot stand the chaotic topnotes. For me, i find that those qualities are precisely what makes Obsession a unique scent and cements its place in the hallowed halls of true classics.
05th March, 2004