I appreciate your observations, SOS. I too have little patience for the hyperbole surrounding L'Anarchiste. In fact I was stunned at how similar our perceptions are. Here's what I had to say about L'Anarchiste when I reviewed it for the Directory:
"I honestly can't understand what all the outrage and revulsion is about. Blood? Nope. "Rusty bucket?" Nada. Copper? Only on the bottle. Certainly not the Antichrist, a zombie, or even vampire juice.
After all the hoopla, what I smell is a very pleasant, well-made woody scent with a good deal of sweet citrus on top and a politely musky base. The orange top note is lightly "mentholated" by cedar leaves, and I suppose if my imagination were much more vivid I might say it smelled like cough syrup, or metal, or something more exotic and disturbing than citrus and cedar sap.
At any rate, the sandalwood, sweet orange blossom and cedar soon blend into a smooth, spicy accord that persists for a couple of hours before the musky-woody drydown sets in. This accord strikes me as quite suave and sophisticated - good for the cultured urbanite who's always very well dressed.
L'Anarchiste is really very nice, versatile, and easy to wear, but hardly earth-shattering, or even particularly weird. The only real fault I find in it is that it's not all that long-lasting, which strikes me as odd coming from a house that's bred such marathoners as The Third Man and Yatagan."L'Anarchiste is now one of my summertime staples.