digging (into) vintage: Yves Saint Laurent Jazz, 1988

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(image Billy Strayhorn)

Perfumer Jean-François Latty

Jazz is a great illustration of the point that the aromatic fougère of the 70s-80s had reached before Cool Water changed the rules. It has a warm spiced opening that plays against the longer-lasting notes that define the heart and a classic fougère base.

Jazz has a major/minor chord interaction that maintains my interest as it unfolds. It’s a bit too blended to be one of the strident fougères like Azzaro pour Homme and Troisième Homme that preceded it and YSL’s own Rive Gauche pour Homme that followed it. Still it is an aromatic fougère of the old school and feels warm and enveloping rather than limpid, fresh and sweet/tart like Cool Water.

Where would the aromatic fougère have gone without the ascendance of dyhydromyrcenol? Jazz, while lovely, seems like one of those genealogical lines identified by archeology that became extinct when the faster, more viable predator (Cool Water) was better able to cull its prey, the male herd of the late 80s/early 90s.

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