Within the perfume range of The Different Company, Oud Shamash holds a special place. Firstly, it was made for La Collection Excessive, a mini-collection created for Bertrand Duchaufour; and secondly, it is the favorite of brand founder, Luc Gabriel, who, when he's not wearing it, at least smells the bottle every day.
As Luc Gabriel assured me, they conceived the idea of an oud fragrance years before it became commonplace, but since The Different Company never works in a hurry and allows the perfumer as long as he needs to create a timeless creation, they launched these oud perfumes in 2011, when probably only household appliances were not named after oud wood.
📷 Powerful, dark, mysterious… Oud Shamash is an ode to eternity, a bright alchemy of the Oud absolute which is glorified by its spicy and Amber notes.
Despite the fact that Mr. Gabriel and Mr. Duchaufour created a fragrance that would become a bridge between Asia and Europe, they used real aquilaria oil from Laos (and this naturalness is well-defined, starting from the heart of the fragrance).
The perfumer chose the raw material oud oil to use in The Different Company creations, and he decided upon the oil from the Laotian plantations as most suitable because it was not 'cheesy' or very 'animal.' From several ideas presented to him, Luc Gabriel chose two, and it turned out that instead of one fragrance, two appeared: Oud Shamash and Oud for Love.
The fragrance got its name from the Sun God of Assyrian and Mesopotamian mythology, Shamash or Shamshu.
The fragrance got its name from the Sun God of Assyrian and Mesopotamian mythology (Shamash or Shamshu; if you remember MEMO Shams Oud and numerous Al Shams attars, they are devoted to The Sun as well). The god of sun and light was also the god of fertility, the god of justice, the king of the universe, and the supreme judge of gods and men. (On the Hammurabi stele, the king receives his laws from Shamshu.) So, you'd expect the fragrance to shine and glow, but I would call Oud Shamash calming, like an antidepressant; it is not very bright, but very peaceful.
📷 The fragrance got its name from the Sun God of Assyrian and Mesopotamian mythology, Shamash or Shamshu.
It's like a piece of yellow-brown amber or rosin, semi-translucent to the light; it smells like yellow amber – rosin and amber. It is bright only at the very beginning, when pink pepper reigns over all, then the accent shifts to cinnamon, and davana awakens a little dusty, warm, and very calm power in the perfume. Afer that, literally a hint of a rose appears, animating the resinous chord of patchouli, oud, and cistus. And then – the pleasant smell of spices, resins, wood, and colophony, in a single cloud.
Oud Shamash has a distant train based on light cedarwood, with a slight amber accent, transparent and light, like a pine forest under the sun.
Surprisingly, in Patricia Nicolai's Oud Sublime Nicolai Parfumeur Createur the same idea of 'oud in a rose chypre' sounds quite solemn and sporty. Bertrand Duchaufour has this idea of a homely and relaxed style, without the green aromatics and eugenol's spicy notes.
It feels like it brings in a cinnamon cake or a baking sheet with hot gingerbreads. Oud Shamash has a distant train based on light cedarwood, with a slight amber accent, transparent and light, like a pine forest under the sun.
📷 Lu Gabriel (left) and Bertrand Duchaufour (right).
Bertrand would not be himself if self-citation was not felt in his fragrance. Oud Shamash is not as spicy as Al Oud L’ Artisan Parfumeur; it has almost no powdery cumin. It is not as powdery and bready as Jubilation for Men Amouage, and it is distinguished from Comme de Garçons' Avignon base by a more resinous and dense character. But all four are obvious relatives; they have obvious similarities – the common DNA inherited from the same creator. I like Oud Shamash more than the previous three perfumes (and some next ones, like Copal Azur and Land of Warriors). It is more French. There is something alive and warm in it. Hot bread crust. Warm leather jacket. Unknown spice. Impenetrable calmness.
Luc Gabriel: "You know, there's an attraction, The Russian Mountains? This perfume develops just like that, back and forth, and that’s what Bertrand can do brilliantly, and I like it in his perfumes. It's alive, it's breathing and vibrating by itself. That is the goal for every fragrance of The Excessive Collection, which is created by Bertrand Duchaufour for The Different Company."
There is something alive and warm in it. Hot bread crust. Warm leather jacket. Unknown spice. Impenetrable calmness.
La Collection Excessive The Different Company is currently disbanded. The Oud Shamash and Oud For Love fragrances have just appeared in Extrait de Parfum concentration in volumes of 100 ml and have entered the Juste Chic collection (and for certain they have become even more beautiful). Aurore Nomade and I Miss Violet are included in Our Vintages collection, in their common concentration of Eau de Parfum.
Oud Shamash Eau de Parfum 100ml
Top notes: Rum CO2 of Jamaica, Saffron, Cinnamon of Ceylon, Rose Berries (4%), Davana Essence.
Heart notes: Damascus Rose from Turkey, Nagamotha (4%), Saint Thomas Berries.
Base notes: Oudh from Laos, Patchouli (9%), Cist absolute, Sandalwood, Grey Amber, Woody and dry notes, Leather Notes, White Musk, Vanilla of Bourbon, Notes caramélisées, Resinoid Tolu.
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