Hey all,

So I've been sniffing around western fragrances pretty vigorously for about twenty years or so. Only recently, I decided to dip a toe into the middle eastern pond. I think my only real experience with 'Oud' prior to today was via Montale Black Aoud and M7. While I think they're well-done fragrances, the way my chemistry likes to amp sweetness and many floral notes, they both were intolerably cloying so I at some point decided I just didn't care for oud and promptly ignored the Great Western Oud Invasion.

Naturally, I started on the cheaper end of the spectrum and don't expect my budget to get too terribly opulent.

I picked up a couple 1/4 tolas as well as an Al-Haramain for some testing. I'm happy to say that I really like everything.

The first was a 'Dehn al Oud Mukhallath' that didn't have much detail outside of 'An Indian Oud'. I really enjoy this. It's deeply smoky, old wood with subtle notes of medicinal and ... maybe a bit of Old Goat Barn. ( I grew up on a farm, so that's an actual reference more than an imagination, haha ) It makes me think of an old fallen rotted-out tree in the forest. None of the weirdly sweet and screechy rose notes I recall from the Montale or the thick fruit sweetness of M7. Just deep earthy woodiness with a bit of spice, smoke, and animalic overtones.

The cheapo I gave a try was Al-Haramain Naeem. Green and soapy, some hints of clove, dries down musky. For five bucks or so, it's a definite blind buy win, but I wouldn't go out of my way to refill it before experimenting around some more.

The last is a 'Dark Musk itr Attar'. Pleasant, spicy, starts getting a little too sweet in the base for me but otherwise an enjoyable scent.

At the moment, I'm considering some options from Agarscents Bazaar, but I'm extremely ignorant in this world of perfumery. Can anyone recommend some resources? I think I'm leaning more to the smoky oud/earthy spicy side of things right now, though a bit less sweet musk would be worth investigating.

Back in western perfumery, my tastes trend similar, so this isn't a huge surprise. ( Most CdGs, Yatagan, that kind of thing. )