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  1. #1

    Default Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    I apologize in advance for this kind of rambling post. I've not slept much lately and have woken up early today (4:30am!) after only a few hours of sleep. Unable to get back to sleep, I thought I'd write about my impressions of Memoir Man which I tested while Basenotes was down. I'll be adding more to the thread as I wear it again and clarify my impressions and understanding of this scent.




    Amouage Memoir Man
    Category: Leather / Woody Fougere
    Top Notes: Absinth, Wormwood, Basil, Mint
    Heart Notes: Rose, Frankincense, Lavender Absolute
    Base Notes: Sandalwood, Vetiver, Guaiac wood, Amber, Vanilla, Musk, Oakmoss, Leather, Tobacco


    This scent is really quite interesting. I definitely need to give it another few wearings before I fully understand it, but I will give some initial impressions.

    This starts out with a very realistic absinthe accord. It's rounder and deeper (and has less pine/fir) than the accord in Fou d'Absinthe, and is not the brutal live wormwood plant accord in the opening of Yatagan. Here you get a hint of wormwood oil (which is aromatic, green, almost minty like spearmint but darker and smoother and more full bodied), a very round anise note that persists through most of the fragrance, and a mint note that smells more like mint leaf than mint toothpaste or mint gum. The mint is a minor player though, so do not fear. I couldn't detect the basil as a standalone note but have a feeling that it is acting in such a way to flesh out the accord which could otherwise be too aromatic and thin. Well, this is anything but thin.

    The opening of this scent is dark, mysterious, and hard to pin down as the notes dance and swirl like the opalescence in a fresh absinthe louche. It is unmistakably green but is not rendered with hues of green normally seen in perfumery. We get an almost washed out green with hints of olive and black tones.. something like this


    The anise element of the absinthe accord is present from early on in the fragrance well into the drydown and imparts a round darkness to the scent that hums quietly in the background - never silent but never obtrusive. Quickly the anise accord is joined by a dark woody accord.. cedar rounded out with lavender absolute. Lavender absolute smells quite a bit different than lavender oil - it is sweet and round and coumarinic and yet dark and has some fruity/berry elements. In Memoir man it never jumps to the fore but acts to deepen the absinthe accord and perhaps more importantly round off the woody notes.

    The drydown features a prominent cedar/guaiac accord that is subtly smoky. The oakmoss is detectable via the leathery and slightly salty notes it provides.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    This scent is unquestionably dark and woody. Unquestionably darker and more brooding than Epic, and also more woody where Epic was more spice oriented. This is just as resolutely masculine as Epic Man, but far less oriental in nature. Memoir Man has an undeniable European feel, not so much as in the European tradition of perfumery, but instead a post-industrialized Europe that is just moving into the Romantic Era. The opening is downright melancholic. The dry down is beautiful but there is always a sense of bleakness present throughout - a black thread woven throughout the fragrance. And yet the scent is so very strong, not only in projection and sillage (both of which are as notable as in Epic Man!), but there is a sort of.. assuredness present that stands resolute against the melancholy and prevents the scent from ever becoming depressing.

    The green elements of the opening last for the first hour or maybe two and this is where the scent is most enjoyable, to me. The drydown does become progressively "more similar" to Gucci PH (the original), with a fairly strong pencil shaving cedar accord tempered here by the lavender absolute, rose and vanilla (and I think I smell a bit of jasmine?) but as mentioned, this scent always retains a darkness that the Gucci never has. In Memoir, the accord is also fuller and weightier. Gucci PH is more like an idealized autumn day, while Memoir Man is that same day plunged into darkness as a storm rolls in.

    Fans of Gucci PH, Fou d'Absinthe, Yatagan, Epic Man, and anyone who enjoys dark scents or very woody scents should definitely check out Memoir Man. I'm not 100% sold on the dry down yet - I wish it had more jasmine or something to smooth it out a bit more and make it even darker (the darkness abates considerably from the opening after the first few hours of wear). If it had those tweaks (which are just personal preferences, mind you) this would easily be one of my favorite scents of all time. I'm going to try layering it with Memoir Woman as that has a much more noticeable (almost grape-like) jasmine accord (it calls to mind a niche take of Dior's Poison, from my cursory sniffing). The Memoir duo seem to have been designed, not only conceptually but olfactorily, too, to be layered, and I think the unification of these two 'disparate souls who see themselves reflected in each other' could be a very beautiful reunion, indeed.

    One more interesting thing: my girlfriend loved this on me. She didn't know what it was and I had told her nothing about the ad copy but she said that it smelled dark, mysterious, and even "scandalous" on me, and said something to the effect of "It smells like.. well, if you could capture the smell of doing something you shouldn't be doing. Like the essence of one of those bad-boy men who women want despite themselves, and yet it simultaneously has this refined elegance and doesn't seem forced or contrived in any way."

    An interesting take given what is mentioned in the ad-copy. That just confirmed that the scent really DID smell that way and it wasn't simply (a fear I always have) that the ad copy and expectations were altering my actual perception of the scent.
    Last edited by SculptureOfSoul; 25th September 2010 at 05:46 PM.
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  2. #2

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Thanks for your great review. Reading this makes me want to have Memoir more

  3. #3

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Count me in as very interested. I normally shy away from absinthe dominated accords, as I feel they have been done to death.
    Very descriptive and captivating writing, SoS. You didn't mention who the nose is, any idea?

  4. #4
    Nasenmann's Avatar
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Guyer View Post
    You didn't mention who the nose is, any idea?
    According to mimifroufrou.com it's Karine Vinchon.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Sorry for excluding the notes list and the nose. The nose is Karine Vinchon Spehner who recently did Opus III for Amouage, too, along with L'Artisan's new vetiver and their L'eau de Jatamansi.

    Here's the note info:
    Top Notes: Absinth, Wormwood, Basil, Mint
    Heart Notes: Rose, Frankincense, Lavender Absolute
    Base Notes: Sandalwood, Vetiver, Guaiac wood, Amber, Vanilla, Musk, Oakmoss, Leather, Tobacco

    I've now edited the original post to include this info. Thanks for the heads up Kevin!

    I'll be wearing it again later tonight and probably a time or two in this coming week. I hope to be able to find more of the notes (I didn't really detect rose at all, but jasmine instead, for instance) and better understand the woody/vetiver/moss accord in the drydown and just how it evolves. There were a few nuances I forgot to mention originally too - like a hint of a peanut butter note amidst the wood, which appeared only briefly at about the 6 hour mark in the drydown and seemed to surface only after a significant increase in body temperature as I was running to and fro. That sounds weird but it was actually really quite pleasant as it didn't last long and was only a background note of the wood accord.
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Your insomnia is our blessing. Thanks for this write-up. I wasn't particularly interested in this before, but now I'll definitely check it out.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    dig your analysis, method, and writing style. not sure this is for me, but-- you make me curious enough to try it.
    too bad the realm of contemporary music oftentimes doesn't get the kind of treatment which you give to fragrance.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Great to hear your take on Memoir, Sculpture.

    Your description of what to me was a 'green haze' in the opening is dead on with my impression, and I'm happy to announce that today I picked up that elusive 'Tribute note' again, which I'm sure is a common facet Amouage have used in both - I don't know if it's a vetiver or tobacco note but it's there . . . just not every time on cue.

    I don't think of this one as woody at all - maybe that's just the way I read woods in general - but I'm wondering if you were at all struck by the frankincense side of things. On virtually every wearing I have seen this as evolving into a slightly 'ashy' incense, albeit with a bunch of herbal damp tobacco leaf close by or suspended above smouldering frankincense embers, so to speak. It definitely has a brooding quality.

    Is this something you pick up on at all? It seems to be largely about a muted, dark incense to me in the mid to latter stages, altho that herbal / absinthe / tobacco mix sticks around.

  9. #9

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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Would you SoS and Mr. R. compare Memoir and Tribute, please?

  10. #10
    mr. reasonable's Avatar
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    I’m intrigued by the very fleeting resemblance to Tribute that surfaces occasionally in the first hour or so of Memoir Man. I have only noticed it on three or four wearings (out of 20+), which makes it all the more challenging for me to pin down - I am not imagining this

    Tribute Attar ~ notes of rose, jasmine, saffron, frankincense, cedar, tobacco, leather, patchouli and vetiver.

    Memoir Man ~ a leather woody fougere with notes of absinthe, wormwood, basil, mint, rose, frankincense, lavender, sandalwood, vetiver, guaiac wood, amber, vanilla, musk, oakmoss, leather and tobacco.


    On paper the common notes are frankincense, vetiver, leather (?) and tobacco so I’m assuming this is where the elusive common note or accord lies and apart from that the two go their own different ways. It's just one facet that pops up in amongst the absinthe 'green-ness' and smoky frankincense from time to time.

    I wore Guerlain Derby today and found quite a strong similarity to this particular accord that is very apparent in Tribute, and that I'm glimpsing in Memoir.

    Guerlain Derby:
    Top Notes - Bergamot, Lemon, Artemisia, Peppermint .
    Middle Notes - Pimento, Rose, Pepper, Mace, Jasmin .
    Base Notes - Leather, Vetiver, Sandal, Patchouli, Moss


    Anyone picked up any slight resemblance between Tribute & Derby? I'm guessing the bright top and the leather / vetiver again.

    My own more general first impressions of MM and some other info are in the original thread from last month here if you missed it:

    http://www.basenotes.net/threads/259...d-Memoir-Woman

    I've gotta say that despite several mentions I find the Memoir / Gucci PH comparison something of a stretch – I perceive them as quite different in personality altho I guess the woody incensey thing makes for some common ground.
    Last edited by mr. reasonable; 26th September 2010 at 02:38 PM.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    +1..... very interested in this one, as i absolutely adore Tribute

  12. #12

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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Mr. R., thanks for yours. In terms of perceived "naturalness," how does Memoir fare?

    Note: I've tried a number of Amouage EdP and liked, as in really liked, none. On the other hand, I adore Homage.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Quote Originally Posted by Addict View Post
    Would you SoS and Mr. R. compare Memoir and Tribute, please?
    I'd love to..

    ..if someone would kindly send me a sample of it!

    For some reason, Tribute is one of the few Amouage scents I've yet to smell, despite the fact that based on the reviews and notes, I should love it.
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    SoS, I didn't try Tribute either... I have to order at least a sample these days...

    By the way, I admire the extremely articulate and evocative way you write about fragrances... even when my reactions are quite different.

    I must be a more Dullah kind of guy... pardon the pun.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    I did a bit of a comparison between Gucci PH and Memoir today. It had been so long since I wore Gucci PH that I had forgotten about the prominent bay leaf up top (which, as a bay lover, I really enjoy!). I think that green element at the top of Gucci, along with the underlying woodiness, is what would lead people - especially after only a cursory sniff on paper - to think the two scents are very similar. Even so, I maintain that the green elements in Memoir are more present, less dry (the bay in Gucci is rather dry), and darker, due to the anise that lurks in the background.

    The oakmoss, incense, woods, and a fairly prominent vetiver note make the base of Memoir once again darker, and far more substantial. The Gucci, on the other hand, on my skin at least, becomes much more amber oriented with a rather clear orris note, too. There are some similarities in texture throughout, and there are some threads of commonality between the incense/wood accords, but as Mr. Reasonable says, their respective moods are very different. Memoir is the yang to Gucci PH's yin.

    This little comparison was totally worth it (I'd suggest it to anyone who is interested in both scents). Not only did I get to really see the way two scents with some common ground can, in regards to mood, diverge quite considerably, I also finally came to see just how good Gucci PH is - a scent I had long overlooked because during an early test all I could smell was pencil shavings. I don't know what has changed but, while I still pick up something like pencil shavings, I pick up so much more in Gucci PH now.
    Last edited by SculptureOfSoul; 26th September 2010 at 09:34 PM.
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  16. #16

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    While Memoir Man does have some commonalities with Gucci PH, I think it's closest analogue may be the oft-feared Salvador Dali PH. (the one in the greenish/black bottle with the lips cap).

    They share a number of notes:

    Memoir Man
    Top Notes: Absinth (well, the anise component of it, anyhow), Wormwood, Basil, Mint
    Heart Notes: Rose, Frankincense, Lavender Absolute
    Base Notes: Sandalwood, Vetiver, Guaiac wood, Amber, Vanilla, Musk, Oakmoss, Leather, Tobacco

    Dali PH
    Top notes: lavender, clary sage, basil, anise and bergamot
    middle notes: jasmine, lily-of-the-valley and geranium
    base notes: leather, sandalwood, amber, patchouli, oakmoss, vanilla and cedar.

    Also, geranium and rose share some similarities, and to my nose, the rose + lavender absolute in Memoir Man smells a bit like jasmine, so there is more crossover there.

    Memoir Man is definitely more refined, and less ostensibly outlandish than Salvador Dali PH. They both have a dark character, with even a bit of bleakness present, although both have a number of beautiful qualities that more than balance the scent and keep it from becoming a depressing wear. Memoir definitely has less of the tar note that is so prevalent in Dali PH, although a tar-like note is present but subdued. Memoir Man also shares a bit of a dark smokiness with Dali PH.

    As mentioned in the first post, there are a lot of hues of dark green present in Memoir Man, along with the traces of black (tar and burnt woods). I definitely think that the color and bottle of Dali PH would be very suitable for Memoir Man, and so I'd say there is even crossover in the packaging and the way it presents the scent..



    I really like Dali PH but find it very difficult to wear, and the tar and smokey qualities of the leather note in it can become overwhelming. There is also a synthetic quality to it that can become irksome as the scent dries down, especially as it has such monster longevity. I find Memoir Man to be a more refined, if less daring, and definitely a higher quality take on a similar theme.
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Thanks, SoS, for posting these detailed reviews and comparisons.

    Memoir sounds quite interesting. I like the comparison with Salvador Dali Pour Homme, which I admire. I'm going to look for Memoir this weekend.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Just tried Memoir Man and actually bought Memoir Woman; interestingly, Memoir Woman is very unisex, and is in my opinion even better than Memoir Man (which is quite good). Where Memoir Man is dark and woody, Memoir Woman adds a top layer of boozy sweetness that elevates it to another level; and to my nose the familiar Amouage incense note is more prominent in Memoir Woman than in Memoir Man. In the drydown, the two are exceptionally alike, so much so that it would be easy to confuse them after a few hours (I had a spray of each on each hand); they both have that exquisite Amouage woodsy/incensy/mossy base. I would highly recommend Memoir Woman for either men or women -- it's highly addictive and is one of the best of the Amouage line, which is saying a lot.

  19. #19

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    I found pictures of both boxes now. See my signature if you're interested in this scent.


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  20. #20
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Amouage Memoir Man, and other amouage offerings:
    http://www.basenotes.net/album.php?albumid=603

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    When I smelled Mamoir Man from the bottle, I liked it very much. Top notes are very good and interesting. the drydown is totally dissapointing...ordinary woody drydown, and it smell the way i dont like...

    Memoir Woman is nice. Though originality is not great. It's an expensive variation on Gaultier2

    anyway, it's Amouage... they both are quality scents....
    "PLAIN LIVING, HIGH THINKING" O.W., De Profundis
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  22. #22

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Dreamer, didn't you get any smoke/ash in the drydown? While the drydown is fairly stark, I do think it's pretty interesting and unique.. at least on my skin. I get quite a bit of a burned incense, and ash smell, along with a hint of tar and something black and smooth (castoreum I believe, as part of the leather accord).
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    My eyes were wide open when I smelled this wonderful top notes incensy accord.....but it changed very soon on the skin.

    I agree it's a complex scent, and you can smell the slow process of development of the scent on blotter, though on the skin top notes fade very quickly and it becomes dull-woody they could make more refined and original woody drydown... it's my initial impressions... I will resmell it again ...
    "PLAIN LIVING, HIGH THINKING" O.W., De Profundis
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  24. #24

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    It's weird because I love the scent exactly as it is, and yet sometimes I yearn for the inclusion of something in the drydown. My thoughts are a bit more lavender absolute and some jasmine, along with more castoreum to smooth it out further and make it more inky black.

    The thing is, that would make it a different scent, and I don't know that I'd prefer that scent to Memoir Man the way it is. Honestly, I want both! (alternatively, I wish the women's Memoir was butched up a bit, as that would make a great scent too, it would be somewhat like man but more floral and more extroverted and sexy, instead of introverted and brooding. I do think they did a good job of making these two scents complementary in so many ways though - they work well together even though each scent has almost the exact opposite characteristics as the other, outside of the fact that they are both dark).
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Quote Originally Posted by DreamerII View Post
    My eyes were wide open when I smelled this wonderful top notes incensy accord.....but it changed very soon on the skin.

    I agree it's a complex scent, and you can smell the slow process of development of the scent on blotter, though on the skin top notes fade very quickly and it becomes dull-woody they could make more refined and original woody drydown... it's my initial impressions... I will resmell it again ...
    I have to agree with this. I finally had a chance to try this and I can say I was so disappointed. The opening is amazing. It is exactly as explained by SoS. Mint, absinthe and wonderfully green. But the dry-down is so basic and generic that it didn't warrant me purchasing it. Darn I was really expecting a lot from this too! With epic for men, it was love all the way through. From the initial spray to the dry-down, to me that was an instant classic. Epic and Silver are still my top Amouage scents! Either way this is a nice basic scent coming from a wonderful exotic company.


    PS. My sample was sample from Luckyscent and was not sprayed so I wonder if spraying it makes a difference. i will have to see.

  26. #26

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    What a great review.
    Girls seem to go crazy over Amouage, Lyric Man has the same effect.

  27. #27
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Quote Originally Posted by cairomerta View Post
    I have to agree with this. I finally had a chance to try this and I can say I was so disappointed. The opening is amazing. It is exactly as explained by SoS. Mint, absinthe and wonderfully green. But the dry-down is so basic and generic that it didn't warrant me purchasing it. Darn I was really expecting a lot from this too! With epic for men, it was love all the way through. From the initial spray to the dry-down, to me that was an instant classic. Epic and Silver are still my top Amouage scents! Either way this is a nice basic scent coming from a wonderful exotic company.


    PS. My sample was sample from Luckyscent and was not sprayed so I wonder if spraying it makes a difference. i will have to see.
    Given your tastes I suspect being able to spend some time with it and also a better method of application might be worth a shot, cairomerta. I bought this pretty early on and even after a few weeks of wearing it every other day it's still intriguing, I'm picking up new facets. I really wasn't so sure at first - verging on 'meh' despite liking the opening etc. Of course if you don't like it you don't like it but I can't imagine getting the full story from a dab sample even if you empty the whole thing on yourself?

  28. #28
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Quote Originally Posted by mr. reasonable View Post
    Given your tastes I suspect being able to spend some time with it and also a better method of application might be worth a shot, cairomerta. I bought this pretty early on and even after a few weeks of wearing it every other day it's still intriguing, I'm picking up new facets. I really wasn't so sure at first - verging on 'meh' despite liking the opening etc. Of course if you don't like it you don't like it but I can't imagine getting the full story from a dab sample even if you empty the whole thing on yourself?
    I agree with you on this. Dabbing a scent does not do it any justice. I definitely have to go and try it on with the spray applicator to really get the diffused effect of this one. Either way, I think amouage is a magnificent house and I really do hope that this works with my skin with a spray application.

  29. #29

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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Quote Originally Posted by cairomerta View Post
    I agree with you on this. Dabbing a scent does not do it any justice. I definitely have to go and try it on with the spray applicator to really get the diffused effect of this one. Either way, I think amouage is a magnificent house and I really do hope that this works with my skin with a spray application.
    Khalid, Spraying isn't going to change anything. Memoir Man is mediore at best. It's just an extention of The Library Collection in my opinion. Major disappointment for me. Amouage just does such a superb job when it comes to attars, but their EDP's just suck for the most part. Hey Mr.Chong, maybe you should see an ear,nose and throat doctor.

  30. #30
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Quote Originally Posted by thebeck View Post
    Khalid, Spraying isn't going to change anything. Memoir Man is mediore at best. It's just an extention of The Library Collection in my opinion. Major disappointment for me. Amouage just does such a superb job when it comes to attars, but their EDP's just suck for the most part. Hey Mr.Chong, maybe you should see an ear,nose and throat doctor.
    AHHAHAHAHAHAHH Thats funny...ear,nose and throat doctor!!! When I heard about the notes in memoir i was expecting something dark and heavy and smokey! I dont get that at all. The drydown is so disappointing. So generic with no oomph! Maybe like beck said, something like one of their attars.

  31. #31

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    It took me a few wears before I was sold on the drydown. As noted in my initial post I was skeptical of it. I actually find it very smoky and ashen. I really can't fathom how it can be said that it's not very smoky and incense-y. I'm just curious what the drydown smells like to you Cairo.

    As with any of the more complex scents, they deserve a few wears before judgment is cast, if only because it often takes the nose a few wears to fully understand what is going on and see a fragrance for what it is instead of merely trying to think of it in terms of other fragrances - something I know I find myself doing (often subconsciously) on the first wearing in an attempt to better understand the fragrance.

    I know it took me a few wears to love Dhofar! I hope you'll find the love with this scent. It's complexities and unique facets are a bit more 'hidden' than in some fragrances, and I really do understand how a lot of people think it is 'very similar to x or y' and yet after numerous wearings (7 or 8 now in a matter of two weeks, yikes! ) I find it more unique than ever before and truly one of the finest smoky, dark incense offerings I've ever sampled. Yes, I do see some parallels to other fragrances (mostly Dali PH and Serge Noire, with a bit of Gucci PH too), but it's far more natural and nuanced than Dali PH, and also more incensey whereas Dali is more leathery, and its more varied than Serge Noire with its transition from a green top to a grey and ashen base, whereas Serge Noire is more dark throughout and also more spice oriented (with its dark cinnamon and cumin notes). Perhaps best of all, I find the drydown to be very "thick" and full of body, unlike so many scents where the woody drydown becomes airy and ethereal. In this way, I find it similar to Epic Man - not so much in smell, but in the way it maintains its density even into the late dry down.
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Quote Originally Posted by SculptureOfSoul View Post
    ... I find it similar to Epic Man - not so much in smell, but in the way it maintains its density even into the late dry down.
    Very well said.

    Also, I'm thinking that the reason why Memoir didn't live upto thebeck and cairomerta's expectation is because they were expecting Memoir to have a Middle Eastern vibe (the traditional attars that Amouage is famous for). I think we should realize that the Amouage Attars is for a different genre (mainly for the Middle East population), and Memoir is marketed more towards the western population.

    I wore the Memoir last night, and everytime I got a whiff of it, it reminded me something different everytime. Epic is pretty much linear, however, Memoir has distinct top, middle, and base accords. I also noticed that the drydown has a bitterness to it, and was finally able to pinpoint that it was Sandalwood. I have some pure 'White' Sandalwood Essential Oil (the second distillation of Sandalwood), and a phase in the drydown smelled almost like that.
    Last edited by RSharma314; 9th October 2010 at 01:29 PM.

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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Quote Originally Posted by RSharma314 View Post
    Very well said.

    Also, I'm thinking that the reason why Memoir didn't live upto thebeck and cairomerta's expectation is because they were expecting Memoir to have a Middle Eastern vibe (the traditional attars that Amouage is famous for). I think we should realize that the Amouage Attars is for a different genre (mainly for the Middle East population), and Memoir is marketed more towards the western population.

    I wore the Memoir last night, and everytime I got a whiff of it, it reminded me something different everytime. Epic is pretty much linear, however, Memoir has distinct top, middle, and base accords. I also noticed that the drydown has a bitterness to it, and was finally able to pinpoint that it was Sandalwood. I have some pure 'White' Sandalwood Essential Oil (the second distillation of Sandalwood), and a phase in the drydown smelled almost like that.
    I was actually hoping it would be a cross between Derby and Yatagan. For the record I never expect an Attar to be like an EDP. I don't think Tribute or Homage are Middle Eastern scents. What I do expect from Amouage is to hire better noses and use better ingredients. The quality is no where near Kilian or Xerjoff, yet Amouage likes to think of themselves as the best money can buy. I'm losing respect for this house with each new release. With Kilian and Xerjoff, I always appreciate the quality of ingredients even if I don't care for the frag. There is nothing to appreciate with Memoir Man.

  34. #34

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Amouage is nowhere near the quality of Xerjoff or Kilian? Hmm, I think a lot of people here would disagree with that statement, dare I say the majority (as they did on the Xerjoff thread). I'm not knocking Xerjoff or By Kilian (well, ok, the two By Kilians I've tried - Cruel Intentions and Straight to Heaven - were the exact opposite of natural/high quality, loaded with white musks, fake oud, and a harsh patchouli isolate and synthetic rosewood note, but they were both by the same nose so I can't hold them as representative of the whole house). I like a lot of Xerjoffs. They're a completely different style than Amouage - and just like Amouage, some of their scents use more natural ingredients, some are more synthetic, some more daring, some less so, etc.

    We'll just have to agree to disagree. It seems ridiculous to suggest that there's nothing to appreciate in a frag like Memoir Man though. Go put it up against 10 Corso Como Uomo, Gucci PH, the CdG Incense series, etc, and its quality quickly becomes apparent.
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Quote Originally Posted by SculptureOfSoul View Post
    It took me a few wears before I was sold on the drydown. As noted in my initial post I was skeptical of it. I actually find it very smoky and ashen. I really can't fathom how it can be said that it's not very smoky and incense-y. I'm just curious what the drydown smells like to you Cairo.

    As with any of the more complex scents, they deserve a few wears before judgment is cast, if only because it often takes the nose a few wears to fully understand what is going on and see a fragrance for what it is instead of merely trying to think of it in terms of other fragrances - something I know I find myself doing (often subconsciously) on the first wearing in an attempt to better understand the fragrance.

    I know it took me a few wears to love Dhofar! I hope you'll find the love with this scent. It's complexities and unique facets are a bit more 'hidden' than in some fragrances, and I really do understand how a lot of people think it is 'very similar to x or y' and yet after numerous wearings (7 or 8 now in a matter of two weeks, yikes! ) I find it more unique than ever before and truly one of the finest smoky, dark incense offerings I've ever sampled. Yes, I do see some parallels to other fragrances (mostly Dali PH and Serge Noire, with a bit of Gucci PH too), but it's far more natural and nuanced than Dali PH, and also more incensey whereas Dali is more leathery, and its more varied than Serge Noire with its transition from a green top to a grey and ashen base, whereas Serge Noire is more dark throughout and also more spice oriented (with its dark cinnamon and cumin notes). Perhaps best of all, I find the drydown to be very "thick" and full of body, unlike so many scents where the woody drydown becomes airy and ethereal. In this way, I find it similar to Epic Man - not so much in smell, but in the way it maintains its density even into the late dry down.
    I definitely agree with your sentiment about trying it a few times. I tried it again yesterday again with the blotter but it still didnt do it any justice I dont think. I still haven't had a chance to go to perfums raffy to try the spray of it. Dont get me wrong, I absolutely think Amouage ranks up with Xerjoff as the best perfume houses. I love amouage! Really one of the few quality houses in the market and thats why my expectations are so high for them. The drydown for me is not as ashy and smoky as I expected it to be and again I think it may be from blotting it on. The opening though is another story. It is simply wonderful. Very rich and complex. I may change my tune once I give it a real full wearing as opposed to dabbing it on the back of my hand which I think me the other problem. I haven't really tried it yet on any pulse point where it heats up and diffuses. I will get back on this as I am hoping it works.

  36. #36

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    I just got this, and somehow, to my nose, it seems less potent than I thought. Went with 4 sprays, and my colleagues at work weren't complaining at all. In fact I asked if I overapplied and they had to lean in to catch a whiff. Anyhow, I think my nose is a little bit off the mark today. I kept getting the pencil shaving accord, though I'm quite sure there is more to Memoir than that. At the base (about 7 hours later), I get a distinctive guiacwood note that I smell in XXV. The base in Memoir is heavier and deeper than XXV (in fact it reminded me of a less ashy serge noire).

  37. #37

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    First impressions:
    I finally tried the men's and women's version today and..............I am not overly impressed with either. In the men's you get mint and absinthe, big time, and lots of other notes making this one a busy bee. It does not feel dark like Epic Man, I would describe it more as juicy. The opening accord doesn't feel particularly new to me, it actually feels kind of generic/common place, considering it's coming from a such storied house. But to be honest, I just tested it on a paper strip.
    The women's version had me much more interested from the get go, so I sprayed a nice squirt on my forearm and my jacket sleeve. Wow, it's a BIG TIME JASMINE, as SoS mentioned, it's that purple, grape variety of jasmine, very similar to the one used in Poison. It is very loud and I almost had to wash it off, but when the jasmine finally took a back seat the scent started to get interesting. The frankincense takes over, framed by the castoreum, rose and pink pepper - I don't really see this one as a leather, as it seems to be described.

  38. #38

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Is there anyone who has tried both Memoir Man and Aigner Black - if so, can you compare and contrast them?
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  39. #39

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Would anyone mind comparing this to Kyoto, too? Somehow Kyoto has slipped under my radar for a long time. It seems like the two scents may have a fair bit in common.
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    I will have to stick with Epic Man. This one satisfies me thoroughly.
    Is the juice worth the squeeze?

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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Quote Originally Posted by SculptureOfSoul View Post
    Is there anyone who has tried both Memoir Man and Aigner Black - if so, can you compare and contrast them?
    Interesting question, regarding that I own Aigner Black, have a sample of Memoir, and tried them this week a left hand / right hand way two days.

    The top notes of Memoire are much more interesting. If it didn't change that much it does, there would be no question which one the winner is. Black is very dark, really black at that phase, almost makes me cough when applying, while Memoir is green, albeit a bit dark green and friendly, captivating. But this phase doesn't last long, not more than half an hour. And then Memoir turns into a rather faint, hollow sweetness. Actually I don't find anything interesting in it. On the other hand, Black would loose its too strong top notes and turns into a real, but not harsh leather, with a very little sweetness on top of it.

    So taking everything into consideration, in my view Aigner is the clear winner.

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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    ....
    Last edited by Descartes; 29th January 2012 at 02:21 PM.

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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    I'm very surprised not to find any comparison to le labo vetiver of which this is a more complicated version. once again a perfume house piggybacks on another's creation! well c'est la vie du nez. but I have never smelled arpege... which I see here may be the original original? hard to imagine this as the famous womens perfume of which it's said, "promise her anything but give her arpege"

  44. #44
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    The drydown of Memoir Man reminds me of Douce Amère and Lolita Lempicka Au Masculin.

  45. #45
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    I didn`t go so much interested with Amouage Memoir Man. It doesn`t convince me at all. I do think it has coeherence on the green, aromatic, incense aroma. But this is not the memorable phoenix-inspired aroma that i was expecting. The ideas here look to me like recycled ones built around the incense and wormwood accord. It sort of reminds me off tobacco-wood fragrances, like Jil Sander Scent 79 man and the fragrance created for the germany store first in fragrance. They all relies on the tobacco-dry woods at their bases, and because they use the same notes with the same proportions, it ends smelling close when they get at their drydowns. I get more the tobacco, amber, musk and guaiacwood here with a few quotes for the sandalwood aroma to give a discreet milkness, very hard to get. The opening is really wormwood inspired. Not a sweet one, but a greener, bitter one, with a mint edges and a soft, incense on background. But the lavender here kills the accord, and gives a poor balance to the overall effect. What really disturbs me in this one is that there`s something here that has to me a fragrance close to that car scent tablets of generic green aromas. Few fragrances bother me when i`m testing them at skin and i don`t like them; amouage memoir gave me this sensation. If this is a phoenix, is still on ashes.

  46. #46

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Rick, I understand all of your objections - well, most of them. I've not tried as many fragrances in this vein as you and others - maybe if I had I wouldn't find it as original as I do, but I still, personally find it well balanced for what I'm looking for in this kind of scent.

    The only thing I can recommend is giving this one another wear or two if you haven't already. My initial impressions were only lukewarm regarding the dry down but it grew on me after the 3rd wearing.

    Of course, if you just don't like it, you don't like it. I totally understand that! (I feel that way about Invasion Barbare's dry down.. I just can't seem to get the joy others do out of it. Oh well!)
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Quote Originally Posted by SculptureOfSoul View Post
    Rick, I understand all of your objections - well, most of them. I've not tried as many fragrances in this vein as you and others - maybe if I had I wouldn't find it as original as I do, but I still, personally find it well balanced for what I'm looking for in this kind of scent.

    The only thing I can recommend is giving this one another wear or two if you haven't already. My initial impressions were only lukewarm regarding the dry down but it grew on me after the 3rd wearing.

    Of course, if you just don't like it, you don't like it. I totally understand that! (I feel that way about Invasion Barbare's dry down.. I just can't seem to get the joy others do out of it. Oh well!)
    I don`t fully hate it, but there are some things that leaves me uncomfortable here. I just wished that they have found a way to increase the incense without going on a too gothic direction.

    What i like here: the wormwood, mint, incense
    What i dislike: the lavender and the sort of generic tobacco aura
    What i cannot detect: the leather, oakmoss, vanilla, rosa - they seem lost on my skin.

    It`s not a bad fragrance, but the price tag and the initial press release made me expect much more.It`s what kills this one for me. I wouldn`t mind to see someone wearing it, but i cannot see myself reaching for it...

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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Quote Originally Posted by SculptureOfSoul View Post
    Rick, I understand all of your objections - well, most of them. I've not tried as many fragrances in this vein as you and others - maybe if I had I wouldn't find it as original as I do, but I still, personally find it well balanced for what I'm looking for in this kind of scent.

    The only thing I can recommend is giving this one another wear or two if you haven't already. My initial impressions were only lukewarm regarding the dry down but it grew on me after the 3rd wearing.

    Of course, if you just don't like it, you don't like it. I totally understand that! (I feel that way about Invasion Barbare's dry down.. I just can't seem to get the joy others do out of it. Oh well!)
    Hope that you are right about it, i`ll try it more times on skin to see if it gets better.

  49. #49

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Quote Originally Posted by rickbr View Post
    I don`t fully hate it, but there are some things that leaves me uncomfortable here. I just wished that they have found a way to increase the incense without going on a too gothic direction.

    What i like here: the wormwood, mint, incense
    What i dislike: the lavender and the sort of generic tobacco aura
    What i cannot detect: the leather, oakmoss, vanilla, rosa - they seem lost on my skin.

    It`s not a bad fragrance, but the price tag and the initial press release made me expect much more.It`s what kills this one for me. I wouldn`t mind to see someone wearing it, but i cannot see myself reaching for it...
    Sadly, there's NO oakmoss listed on the packaging for either this or Memoir Woman. Now, they may be using one of those new synthetics that doesn't need to be listed in the ingredients, but I feel like if oakmoss is listed as a note they should be using at least SOME real oakmoss. It kind of pissed me off when I got my package and saw that.

    For me, the lavender is kind of the saving grace to the composition as it mellows out the tobacco and dry incense and woods just enough so that they aren't scratchy and annoying. I do get something else dark and smooth, it almost smells like a hint of castoreum, and that too, saves what could otherwise be an unpleasant base.

    I can imagine that not liking the lavender though is pretty much a deal breaker. Anyhow, hope it works for you.

    Oh yeah, one thing I noticed is that.. well, we got our first snowfall the other day and the top notes of Memoir Man really work very well to make the scent "blend in" to the cold atmosphere. The mint and greens really work synergistically with the cold air to enhance the wintery vibe of the opening. It seems silly but, to me at least, when a scent works synergistically with the environment it can really enhance my appreciation of it. With Memoir Man, I can spray it on shortly before leaving and the opening notes will mesh with the cold air as I head out in the cold to work or school, and then upon arriving, the scent starts warming up just as I will be. Fantastic!
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Occured me now that Amouage Memoir Man has some similarties with another fragrance too.
    Memoir Man and Byredo Baudelaire has the same inspiration, and a sort of tobacco woody aroma in common. But Baudelaire seems more generic than Memoir Man i think.

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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    how did i miss this review! the only amouages i have sampled are XXV & Lyric Man... about time.

    Kyoto and Aigner Black smells poles apart..i coudl tell that.. if you have got a chance to sample Christian Lacroix Tumulte, then thats what Kyoto smells like overall. Aigner Black on the other hand has a soda like dose of Anise.. it's lovely.

    Whenever i see the word Wormwood, the only scent that comes to my mind is Ungaro I. However I isnt exactly greenish...

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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Quote Originally Posted by jenson View Post
    Whenever i see the word Wormwood, the only scent that comes to my mind is Ungaro I. However I isnt exactly greenish...
    I was curious about the similarities between Ungaro I and Memoir Man because of the Wormwood as well. However, after I tried both of them side-by-side, the Wormwood in Ungaro I is subdued with the other notes it contain - you have to think about Wormwood when smelling Ungaro I to realize it is one of the notes. Memoir Man, on the other hand, has a very true Wormwood essence, especially in the top notes when you initially spray it on. If you have ever smelled Wormwood Essential Oil, you can undoubtly distinguish it in Memoir Man. Ungaro I then takes a completely different aspect, however, Memoir Man goes through a green phase which I absolutely love.

  53. #53
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    It seems that memoir man has an excellent sillage and longevity. I sprayed my sample on me at 7:00 am, and when i got at home, 8:00pm, my sister told me that my smell stayed during all the day on the kitchen. She told me: "that Hermés you wore today got impregnated on that point of the kichen" (she pointed to where i was standing when i sprayed memoir man). She thought it was Eau des Merveilles, her favorite.
    Memoir Man has the same problem as Opus II has to me, which is execution problems. I love the way they open on skin, but what comes next in both is not memorable. They created a dark concept, based on a black swam, which is not achieved. It smells good, but it lacks something. Maybe they should have explored more the smoky, resinous aroma of the incense in contrast with the wormwood and mint, and really used the leather and moss at the base to make the tobacco woody aura less generic. It would have been terrific, but they way it is present it`s just great. I can see that it`s pleasant, but i don`t see myself spending 300 dollars on this one. I hope that it satisfies someone more than it satisfied me...

  54. #54

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    I actually do get a fair bit of smokiness in the dry down of Memoir, and it is that contrast - the contrast between the "living" opening notes and the "dead" and ashy dry down - that made me admire this scent so much.

    Glad you gave it a second chance Rick, even if it didn't lead to love.

    I'm kind of baffled at how someone could think this was Eau des Merveilles, though!
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Quote Originally Posted by SculptureOfSoul View Post
    I actually do get a fair bit of smokiness in the dry down of Memoir, and it is that contrast - the contrast between the "living" opening notes and the "dead" and ashy dry down - that made me admire this scent so much.

    Glad you gave it a second chance Rick, even if it didn't lead to love.

    I'm kind of baffled at how someone could think this was Eau des Merveilles, though!
    I was quite shocked too, because i didn`t saw anything in common between then. I don`t know if she was talking about Eau des Merveilles or Elixir, since she wear and love both. The only thing that could get close to the fizzy woody aura of eau des merveilles is the guaiac wood, but the notes is wrapped in an ambery woody tobbaco aroma at the base, so it doesn`t make it similar of the woody aroma in eau des merveilles (or even at elixir des merveilles)

  56. #56
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    I received a sample of this a short while ago and must join the thumbs-down camp. The bittergreen top is the most interesting part, but doesn't hold out more than 30 minutes on paper, while never really coming to the forefront at all on my skin. What follows is ashy blandness, which, Memoir indeed, recalls a number of dark dry masculines built around smokey clove-lavender-burnt herb-woods accords. Ho hum, and for the price tag, ho ho ho. From memory I'd say Ronaldo Esper Memories - oops - or Léonard pour homme tread similar territory. I can also get something similar from Dirty English (one of the few more interesting and daring designer scents of recent vintage) for a lot less money. Or something, in my opinion, much better and more saturnine, like Morabito Or Black. And I can get a better-made green-incense-woods composition from Bogner Black Forest (deceased). So, while Memoir is not a fall from grace, it's sobering that what used to be a good designer scent in terms of construction and quality now sells as a $200 upward niche (Aventus, most By Kilians, oh, take yer pick) while most current designer stuff (due exceptions noted) now appears to my nose to be $1 / hectoliter swill. Today you would stick something like Ténéré in a gaudy crystal flacon and sell it as a Marrakesh lux spa for $1000 a bottle.
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  57. #57
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    I have tried this twice now, once on the plane to NY last week, and the other time tonight.

    I must echo everyone's comments above, that the top notes are just wonderful. Bottle those up, sell them, and I will pay top dollar for that instantly. They can call it Memoir Summer or Memoir Cologne.

    But as Memoir Man dries on my skin, it moves oh-so-quickly into ashy woods/fougere territory. A category that I love, but that ultimately I am very happy with say...Yatagan, at it's incredibly affordable price point.

    Oh, and I sprayed my sample on, not dabbed.

  58. #58
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    On the back of a recent Amouage binge, I managed official samples of the Men's and Women's. And while the men's worked well enough to warrant a full bottle purchase (I am expecting it this week!), I wasn't as impressed with the women's as I was with the men's. I keep smelling strong resemblance with Dia men (Dia less sweet), when I sprayed that side by side with the Memoir Men. Not my fave Amouage, but FBW, at the moment.

    The bottle is admittedly too kick-ass for me to overlook. *sigh* Plus an SA was telling me how Amouage prices will go up next year (I suspect to make up for the poor currency), I should get my hands on what I want by Xmas. I sure know how to justify purchases.
    Last edited by MFJ; 8th December 2010 at 09:38 AM.

  59. #59

    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Dia Man and Memoir similar? Hmm, I don't see it much at all.

    Anyhow, Memoir is a grower. It's not a scent that immediately wows, but I find that it is actually far more complex than it first appears and that its charms reveal themselves after a good number of wearings.
    ***For sale:

    Iris Pallida 50ml

    Ungaro I 75ml

    and more!
    - http://www.basenotes.net/threads/301...n-Man-and-more

  60. #60
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    Default Re: Amouage Memoir Man: Initial Impressions

    Probably my imagination, must retest again.

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