surely not scary at all ( very different than ambrarem). the rose comes very distinctively on to me, almost to the point of a rose based scent ( i might be hyper-sensitive to this note). wearing it is not a 'challenge' at any point. i would say it is 'interesting' instead 'challenging', since it feels comfortable. masterfully crafted, high art prefumery.
Pétroleum by Histoire de Parfums, 2011
Rated #1951 in Fragrances
Oddly for me, PETROLEUM reminds me somewhat of 1740 sans immortelle. There is a similar leathery slightly animalic aspect that is buried deep within, compelling one to search past the sweetish mineralic oud-y layers (bilge accord?). I sense a resemblance to Ambrarem in feel but the arrangement is much tighter in Petroleum, the counterbalances more finely tuned. Despite my initial misgivings it wears surprisingly well even if it stays firmly outside my realm of preferences, acquiring a rare sweet spot between outright wearability and edge-of-the-seat avant garde. If you wish to smell unlike everyone else, this will be hard to beat.
Imagine, if you will, a feral cat marking its territory inside a sun-bleached leather jacket on top of an oil-filled wooden barrel floating in the middle of an ocean during a breezy twilight. Shimmering and unctuous. Excruciating and sublime. A truly fantastic fluid.
Surprisingly, this does not smell remotely of petrol to me. ln fact, the opening is fresh & almost sweet, with touches of herbs & perhaps a little myrrh. As it develops, l get oudh, woods, an ozonic, "mineral" note, & a faint undercurrent of patchouli. The ozonic note rises above the rest & takes over, becoming bilge-like in the same way that Tirrenico did on me. Later on, ambergris & a dry leather join the mix, but the bilge-y note remains prominent to the end, making this one totally unwearable for me. l do not get any of the animalic/civet notes mentioned elsewhere. lt all lasts around six hours on me, & the projection is thankfully low to moderate. As an experiment, this may work for some, but to me that unpleasant bilge note seems out of place in what might otherwise have been a perfectly nice fragrance, & so it's not working for me.
Petroleum is unique. This creative masterpiece deserves all the hypes that just a fragrance destined to become a cult one is worthy to receive. I needed to wait a long time before finally testing a juice that intrigued me since when i've heard about its inception. This fragrance is conceptually futuristic but arcane in the olfactory effects, extremely modern and deeply retro at once. I would talk about a gasolinic and ozonic aoud-amber-patchouli concoction. At the first sniff i'm in a while teleported back in to an obscure ambience of my childhood, probably my old aunt's bedroom, a shadowy, stuffy, musty, vaguely polluted and claustrophobic place full of wallpapers, old wardrobes, stored furs, leatherwears, smell of naphthalene and fuggy air. I smell on my wrist a potpourri of leather, mothballs, floral deodorants, detergent, moquettes, old velvets, boot polish (i detect indeed in this phase a vague reminiscence about by Kilian Pure Oud) and aldehydic grandma colognes. The first part of the development is medicinal, citric (mostly orangy) and vaguely spicy/earthy with its well calibrated dose of petrol, gasoline and high quality aoud while in a second phase the stark aroma tames down becoming an absolutely velvety, mysterious and vintage rosey/ambery wake with musky accents. In this phase you can effectively detect some airy/ozonic/mineral presence in the blend, the touch of genius which, while enhancing utterly the mystery of amber with its salty aftertsmell, introduces a lighter salty/sweet vibe that pushes up in the air the rosey/velvety ( spelaean and metallurgical at once) trail. Arcane and modern i write and indeed the final aroma reminds me at once an old stuffy ambience of my past or my latest visit to the dentist (with the typical waiting room medicinal smell jumping to mind). All can i say is that as a lover of weird and experimental alchemies, this evocative and futuristic aroma climbed in a while the highest peaks of my olfactory liking.
Very nice composition here in Pétroleum by Histoire de Parfums. I find it difficult to call out given notes for most of the scent's development as it is so well-blended, no notes really call attention to themselves until the dry down, save the Oud. I find it more a scent with an *accord* that is quite identifiiable, and very true to its name. Pétroleum reminds me very much of clean smelling petrol with extremely subtle hints of rose as a distant supporting note well in the background. I don't find Pétroleum to be a loud or controversial scent at all, but rather a nice pleasant scent that is distinctive, while being quite wearable and versatile at the same time. The dry down is primarily a clean musk, mixed with the remnants of the petrol accord that now takes a supporting role, coupling with a very subtle leather. Sillage is about average and longevity is excellent. My only gripe with Pétroleum is the price. When you can buy classics like Fahrenheit in their vintage form for less than half the cost of Pétroleum, it is a much harder sell to get me from the "appreciation" column to the "buy" column. Still, while both scents share a petrol vibe (albeit different smelling ones with completely different execution to my nose) this is absolutely no Fahrenheit clone at all, and if you can afford it, Pétroleum is well worth an addition to one's collection. Tied with Amber 114 as my favorite scent from the brand to date at 4 to 4.5 stars out of 5.
Petroleum is part of the -m Editions rares trio, an experiment in marrying brutalist bilge notes to classical structures typical of HdP. One's liking of these experiments, then, depends on one's opinion on such marine notes. I am hypersensitive. That said, I do admire the effect of Petroleum. The union of bilge notes with the now pervasive synthetic oud-roses creates the feeling of entering a dark, cold, damp, frightening cave. Everything is there: the fresh, cold air (the ozonic effect highlighted by alfarom), a strong metallic, mineral material, the mold, and some unindentified decaying organism. Not that I would ever wear this, but smelling it on paper is interesting - in the same sense that smelling Secretions Magnifiques is. Relative to the sister Ambrarem, this at least seems to have a coherent structure and an interesting purpose. The neutral rating is an average. As something to wear, this is strongly negative. As an experiment, it is positive. The point is, HdP seems to present this as a straight up, real perfume, not as a conceptual exercise (like Sec Mag), so the first criterion (wearability) is included. cacio
An inlet on a secluded lake, moonlight shimmering on the placid water in the depths of a hot humid Midwestern night. A thin film of oil and gasoline floats on the water's surface near the small docked boats. That film combined with the bacterial activity in the quiet inlet gives rise to the heady fragrance of life itself: the smell of Histoires de Parfums Petroleum. Well....not really. But you get the idea. HdP Petroleum does have a modest petrochemical note. And there is a swampy marine thing going on. Sweetish amber too. It is interesting smelling stuff to be sure. The continuing drydown is not tremendously satisfying, a character trait Petroleum shares with benighted sister Ambrarem. If you favor petrochemical atmospheric type fragrances, which Petroleum is, at least in part, I think you can find much better choices than Petroleum. But if you want that softer petrol touch maybe this is inspiration.
Petroleum is pretty bizarre indeed being entirely built and conceived on juxtapositions. Resinous and intense but at the same time sort of fresh and "ozonic", deep and obscure but surrounded by aldehydic notes, dark and animalic yet "clear" and somehow light. All the elements are handled in an almost "unseen" way. The oud/rose combo is nowhere similimar or somehow close to any of the previous interpretations of the accord, It's amphasized in its woody freshness avoiding the burnt-sugar and medicinal effect. Rose is detectable but masterfully blended with the rest. Deepness is provided by a consistent dose of resinous notes while civet juxtaposed to aldehydes and ozonic hints gives birth to a destabilizing and pleasantly dissonant accord during the musky/ambery drydown. The base. This is the real point of strength of Petroleum. Petroleum is not just wearable, is extremely wearable and a true standout. The fragrance has a nice projection but it never become overwhelming or claustrophobic. It has a remarkable presence but, fortunately, is not overpowering as I expected. Lately I've noticed a mineral quality to it that adds even more complexity. Surely a winner for me and among the best releases of the year but I believe this is going to be a polarizing fragrance because of its ozonic undertones which, together with aldehydes, create a bizarre juxtaposition with the rest. Paradoxically there's no challenging power coming from the supposed petrol note (which is definitely more mineral/natural smelling than the gasoline-like accord of, let's say, Fahrenheit, Nostalgia or even Knize Ten). The ozonic aspect, instead, adds a slightly weird and destabilizing nuance that may result off-putting to someone. IMO it perfectly blends with the rest adding a compelling, sort of off-centre, aspect. Overall Petroleum has a very distinctive character and, just like many of the HDP compositions, it perfectly achieves an incredible balance between traditional perfumery and modernity. Full bodied but somehow weightless.
Pétroleum by Histoire de Parfums, 2011
|Top Notes||Oud, Bergamot, Aldehyde|
|Middle Notes||Rose, Oud, Amber|
|Base Notes||Oud, Civet, Leather, Patchouli, White Musk|
|By||Histoire de Parfums|
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