Very nice read mr. reasonable. Thanks!
Thread: Amouage Interlude Man - 2012
INTERLUDE MAN (Amouage)
in·ter·lude (ntr-ld) n.
1. An intervening episode, feature, or period of time:
2. Music. Short piece inserted between the parts of a longer composition.
I am always interested in the back-story / inspiration in the Amouage Man/Woman releases. Looking back at Lyric, Epic, Memoir and Honour I find a narrative development that appeals to me, a story basically. I also like the fact that they come in pairs – “quel horreur!” in this day and age when it’s all about one-offs and unisex and whatnot – I think it’s romantic. Look further and you’ll see that different perfumers work on the Man & Woman and that the relationship between the two quite often mirrors an imaginary relationship between two characters – Memoir, particularly, brought this home to me. I like the conceptual angle – I like to know what’s going on behind the scenes as a piece of creative work gestates and comes together.
So, it was interesting knowing that I’d be sitting down and chatting with Christopher Chong at the Interlude Launch and would have a chance to get his take on things direct. Why? Because there hasn’t been a lot of pre-release press about Interlude – all I can recall is a mention of ‘abstraction’ and ‘chaos’ somewhere, and also a particularly cool quote from his own facebook page “Fuck the olfactory triangle”, which I really like, although I’m not sure if it’s aimed at any one perfume in particular.
Apart from this, all we really have to go on is the name – one more dictionary definition:
“Interlude: In the theatre an interlude performs the same function as an entr'acte, music between acts or scenes, designed to bridge a gap. It may also be used to indicate music played or sung between two other works or two sections of a work.”
Mr. Chong explained that he was thinking of an Interlude in musical terms, (no surprise there) but rather than alluding to any specific operatic or literary piece he just said that with all the chaos we have seen in the world over this last year or so that this particular Interlude was more about the idea of everyone taking a collective breath, finding a bit of peace amongst it all. I can live with that – I’m fed up with watching the news and as far as perfume goes, much as I love Memoir Man’s brooding Heathcliffian character and others in the line that speak of deeper things, sometimes a simple break from the intensity of it all can be quite welcome. This is a feel-good scent, for sure – it makes me smile.
Interlude Man: Spicy/Woody.
Fragrance notes from Christopher Chong - he also mentioned that concentration for Man is 25% (Woman is 22.5%) - pushed as far as IFRA limits would allow.
Perfumer: Pierre Negrin
Bergamot, Oregano, Pimento Berry Oil, Amber, Frankincense, Cistus, Opoponax, Leather, Agarwood Smoke, Patchouli, Sandalwood.
The first hour or so seems to be largely driven by the Pimento Berry Oil and it's supporters. I saw elsewhere ‘allspice berries’ mentioned, and the more general sound of that works for me as it’s a mildly sweetened spicy, slightly herbal accord with a light hint of the powdery quality that Opoponax can lend. My first thought was ‘jelly beans for grown-ups’ (in a good way). It’s bright, upbeat and has a verging on aroma-therapeutic quality going for it.
Over the course of an hour or so this slides into a ‘springy’ woods kind of mood. We had poplar trees lining the sports fields when I was a kid and if you bend a branch enough it will break (begrudgingly) and this reminds me of the bright, clean bleached wood quality you get from that when it’s dried off a bit (as opposed to heavier woods, or the ubiquitous ‘cedar’, which mercifully is nowhere to be seen here).
Interlude Man pretty well hums along in this woods and spice in a good mood manner for a few hours with little 'moments' as different notes weave in and out, with a very interesting sense of smoke hovering over the proceedings – all with a reassuring tonic goodness in evidence. It will put a spring in your step.
Mr. Chong mentioned that chaos and anarchy resolving into a sense of peace was part of the intention here and I sort of get that – it’s not a defined three-step progression and it’s anything but linear. The cover art on the box makes perfect sense actually - abstract, fleeting glimpses of colour coming and going over a darker background, but above all optimistic.
There is no real sense of the heavy hitters mentioned making a grand entrance at any point – but there is a sober undercurrent that becomes more apparent over time. The smoky quality is backed up by a subtly darker mood – it’s like you notice the light shift in the background and you realize it’s getting later in the day. I sensed this far more from arms length than leaning into sniff close up – nice projection. My guess is that this has been there all along but as this is first time out I am noticing the top end stuff rather than getting the whole picture – usually the way.
My sense is that Interlude is an apt name for those of us who know the whole Amouage canon – it’s quite relaxed, laid back, even – it’s not as demanding as an Epic or a Memoir, or even Lyric. If this is Christopher Chong’s idea of pausing for breath before jumping into the next chapter with Amouage and working with some new perfumers on board then all power to him, frankly – and if it’s a call to those who are interested in listening to just step back from the brink and take a deep collective breath then that’s cool too. I’m enjoying this and so are the couple of people I work with in the studio, as it happens. It seems a bit clunky using the word ‘fragrant’ to describe a fragrance, but I’m grasping for words here. In Cantonese there’s a word ‘heung’ which conveys a lot more than just ‘fragrant’ and that’s what I’m getting from Interlude – there’s an interplay of quite vital ‘tonic’ notes, that just make you feel good. I’m looking forward to wearing it some more over the next few days to get a little more perspective.
Six hours gone and this moderate two-spray to each wrist application is easing off, wrapping up ‘Day One with Interlude’. I consider this a superficial glance - I would not usually write so soon but given the fact we were lucky enough to get the first look over here I wanted to kick a ‘first impressions’ out for you guys who are interested. With a bit of luck this might even be a Basenotes scoop. It’s a new Amouage to join the line-up and it is it’s own man
Thanks to the Lane Crawford team (especially So) for the super low-key Launch Event and to Christopher Chong for being so generous with his time.
With Christopher Chong, Lane Crawford June 26th. 2012
July 1st. Update:
It's clear to me I was only getting about half of the story. Subsequent wearings have brought home two key facts to me.
1. The interplay between the frgarant 'berry like' and mild balsamic sweetness, the Opoponax, during the course of a few hours, is mesmerising. A subtly different experience each time depending on where I am, relative humidity etc. I really enjoy the upbeat complexity of this. The 'grown-up jelly beans' analogy probably sounds dismissive or even vaguely insulting but it is not intended that way. It's just one way of describing a a quite heady mix of individual notes that seem to be constantly shifting depending on your perspective. I perceive the underlaying 'background', (for what it's worth), as an azure dipping into dark powder blue.
2. The Agarwood Smoke accord, tempered by a light dose of Leather, is now strikingly apparent. Where many perfumes fade off to a soft vanilla or 'give me a cuddle' ending, the lasting impression from Interlude, best witnessed on the shirt worn during the day, is a terrific smoky quality that hints at a lighter Memoir Man or dialled down Leather Oud, maybe all tempered a bit by whatever Sandalwood is involved (I can't detect a literal note but there's something smooth happening here that I like).
Last edited by mr. reasonable; 4th July 2012 at 05:55 AM.
Very nice read mr. reasonable. Thanks!
Definitely enjoyed your descriptors mr. reasonable and I look forward to trying this one.
Current Top Favorites:
1) Portrait of a Lady original formula (EdP Frédéric Malle)
2) Giorgio for Men vintage/V.I.P. for Men (Giorgio Beverly Hills)
3) Dia Man vintage edt (Amouage)
4) Anat Fritz Original Formula and Classical (Anat Fritz) - tie
4) Lalfeorosa (O'driù) - tie
6) Les Nombres d'Or Vetyver (Mona di Orio)
7) Captain vintage (Molyneux)
8) Tzora (Anat Fritz)
9) Javanese Patchouli (Zegna) - tie
9) Monsieur de Givenchy vintage (Givenchy) - tie
9) Coeur de Vetiver Sacré (L'Artisan) - tie
9) X for Men (Clive Christian) - tie
9) Patou pour Homme Privé (Jean Patou) - tie
9) Oud Shamash (The Different Company) - tie
Bravo Mr. Reasonable and thanks Mr. Chong for spending his time to share the thoughts with us.
Really looking forward to getting this on July the 4th, The notes list sounds perfect for me.
Great read Mr.R! Definitely on my test lits.
Discover my Guest Reviewer Of The Day here
Thanks mr reasonable for your dedicated and detailled report! Great read!
After seeing the box and smelling the female counterpart (the masculine bottle was away for a photoshoot, apparently) I was expecting this to be an amouage version of aventus, or something to that effect. The biggest amouage crowdpleaser? It's good to hear that there is a somber balance to it. At any rate, will sample
Iris Pallida 50ml
Ungaro I 75ml
and more! - http://www.basenotes.net/threads/301...n-Man-and-more
Enjoyed reading the description.
Nice, thanks for posting that mr. reasonable, was real curious about this one, can't wait to get my hands on it.
"I drank what?" -Socrates
Thank you for this great thread, Mr. Reasonable. I am really looking forward to Interlude Woman as well.
I must say Mr. Chong is so boy-ish / young looking !
Amouage is an exceptional house. My experience with their fragrances has been positive, and I look forward to this new one as well.
A superb report. Thank you!
Thank you for posting this.
Very much looking forward to trying this.
Bois Du Portugal
Very nice indeed. Looking forward to trying this one.
Thank you very much Mr. R! Can't wait to sniff that for sure.
I'm not gonna try it as I seriously fear falling for yet another Amouage -.-
Wow, Timaru, so glad to have you back!
... And do me a favor - don't disturb my friend. He's dead tired.
Welcome to the Bwahahaha! era...
TUM TUM PISH!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Yes, I am also salivating for any bit of news re. Interlude Woman .
Oh, wonderful writing on this one Mr. Reasonable. I've not smelled it, but feel like I have now. This actually sounds intriguing to me. Thanks!
When does this come out?
My initial impression is that there is a similarity in feel to the opening of Myrrhe et Delires which I read as pear-ish, with a bit of a crisp zing to it - Coconut mentioned ginger. I love it, because this then sustains and evolves as the drier more mature chypre idea takes hold. Tough for me to describe with only a cursory wearing - but Coconut also mentioned unisex pretty much straight off the bat - it's sophisticated, under stated.
At this point I really only have a bit of a fix on the front end, which I intend to compare directly with the Guerlain on the weekend, and hope to then really get a handle on the whole story from front to end, rather than just a quick wrist test.
PS Thanks, all for reading and supportive comments
Last edited by mr. reasonable; 29th June 2012 at 05:59 AM.
Oh thanks , Mr. Reasonable- I am just grateful for any information ! Floral Chypre sounds excellent. I can't wait to hear more.
A nice read. I can't wait to try it!
Is the juice worth the squeeze?
Thanks for posting this. Did you ask him why the "collars" come off of all of their bottles? I can't figure out how to fix mine...it looks naked without the name ring there...