Montale Aoud Cuir d’Arabie, release date uncertain

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(image, the Clinton’s at Bill Clinton’s induction into the Voting Rights Hall of Fame)

Perfumer Pierre Montale

The irresistible force, the immovable object. The rock and the hard place. He-man and She-ra. Leather and oud are the bad-boy and bad-girl notes of perfumery. They’re the enfants terribles. So, Aoud Cuir d’Arabie should be a clash of titans in a bottle, right?

After a spectacularly rocking 5-10 minute opening we have the answer. No.

However it comes about ( * ) this perfume goes from waving its arms and yelling at you to quietly turning its back on you so fast that I have try it again and again to make sure my sense of smell isn’t out of whack. Dry tarry wood isn’t an unpleasant ending to a perfume, but 5 minutes of excitement followed by 8 hours of uneventful drydown isn’t a thrill-ride.

* three possible causes for the hurrah-to-hush effect:

1) The paradoxical effect, as in medicine. A medication given as stimulant causes sedation.

2) The dosage effect, as in medicine. For instance, a medication at one dose causes dilation of blood vessels while at a higher dose constricts of the vessels.

3) The exaustion effect, as when two evenly matched television drag queens square off in a battle of wits and drama. It’s all nails and spittle until they tire and their hair falls flat.

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