Myrrh is one of my favorite notes. It's dark yet vibrant and bitter but in a smooth way. It can add a dry tang to other notes and can stand almost on its own as an austere "soliflore".

I've reviewed Razala before, but on buying a bottle of the perfume oil version it all came back to me why I was so entranced by it in the first place. My other two favorites on the myrrh theme are Diptyque's L'Eau Trois and Serge Lutens' La Myrrhe, but Razala's character is so different from those two I can easily picture myself owning all three in the near future. L'Eau Trois is a dry, herbal, garrigue-style fragrance, and La Myrrhe is an unearthly poem of aldehyde, but Razala is far removed from the realms of austerity and instead treats myrrh as the core of a voluptuous oriental, warm, spicy and human, separating it from the geographical nature of the L'Eau Trois and the abstraction of La Myrrhe.

The top notes have a hint of orange and pepper, a certain rich heaviness coating it right from the beginning. Though this fragrance evolves, it feels like a base note in every stage. There is no froth and sparkle in this fragrance, just a warm glimmer of flowers, citrus and spice. Soon the myrrh makes itself known and the heart is a very rich core of tuberose and myrrh, the sweetness and dryness of the two elements balanced perfectly. Slowly, after about six hours or so, the floral elements disappear and leave myrrh, patchouli and an animalic note that reminds me of civet. I know Ayala doesn't use civet, so this is likely some kind of illusion given by the ambergris and myrrh blend.

I've tried this in both oil and parfum absolute form, and I think my preference is for the oil. I'm going on a six month old memory, I haven't tested them side by side, but the oil seems rounder and lusher to my nose; more seamless. The longevity and sillage are about the same on each, Razala having medium sillage and very good longevity, around twenty-four hours on my skin ( though I think I retain fragrance better than most ).

This and - the totally different - Immortelle L'Amour are my favorites from her line, but I think Razala is going to get a lot more wear from me. It's a cornucopia of my favorite notes, and it's an oriental that doesn't suffer from the vanillic-ambery stuffiness that can make many unwearable in summer.