MDCI Parfums - Three picks (three meh's...)

Meh! (and those bottles... come on!).


Cuir Garamante (2013)

Nose: Unknown

A pile of exhausted tires and a bucket of fruits left to burn for an entire summer in the backyard under the sun, that's pretty much the smell you get: sweet and pungent, with a dry, cloying burnt-rubber (norlimbanol) leather note. Simple, sharp, straightforward dry leather with some syrupy-rancid floral notes, the same concept you find behind other crap contemporary leathers like Hard Leather by LM Parfums. Personally I do not find the accord much well done – kind of some dissonance I really don't like, but I am more than happy to admit it is my personal taste and my prudish limits. Gets better after a while, but fun enough, it jumps on the opposite side: it just becomes pleasantly dull and safe. Oud fans may like this as well, same gloomy rubbery dryness you can find in several (so-called) oud scents. And also leather aficionados will probably love this (I like leather, but I don't like this). Not my cup of tea.



Chypre Palatin (2012)

Nose: Bertrand Duchaufour

Yet another MDCI scent I don’t get the value of. I tested this twice, the first one some months ago, then some weeks ago, just to see if my nose “grew better” and I could be able to get the good of this scent. I didn’t, it still smelled exactly as much dull as the other time. Here’s what I get: an aldehydic floral-fruity chypre, soapy and talc, with citrus top notes and an artificial rendition of musky-civet notes with dark woods, restrained and quite understated. Surely elegant, classy, pleasant to wear, radiant and obscure at the same time... just like dozens of others. My “problem” with this and other similar fragrances (Roja Dove, Bogue), which despite being niche just stand on the shoulders of previous mainstream giants, is that I can’t help not taking this as a mere ghost of a chypre, pedantically duplicating that type of structures and accords, just with a more contemporary allure due to nowadays’ ingredients – this meaning lighter, more synthetic, more plain. More bright in a way, and that may be positive. I am ok with this, as there is plenty of uncreative perfumes just reiterating these and other styles on purpose; I just don’t get why paying so much for this, and why this shall be considered niche, which shall be the “élite avantgarde” of perfumery. The materials smell ok to me, the rip-off work is fine, the persistence is crap, where’s the plus justifying the incredibly high price? Not questioning other peoples’ money choices, but I am clueless on the reason why one should even just look for this. Nice and compelling in the least interesting meaning ever for me.



Rivage des Syrtes (2009)

Nose: Patricia de Nicolai

Rivage des Syrtes opens with a pleasant, silky, fresh, slightly metallic-aldehydic breeze of citrus notes (more precisely on the “orange-floral” side) blended with a synthetic, cyclogalbanate-like fruity note which you smell in several cheap fruity scents (that annoying “pineapple” note, which *always* carries that annoying sort of moldy-metallic aftertaste - and by the way, is used to build galbanum too), all posed on a sheer layer of white clean flowers – I get ylang more than tuberose. Green tips and a sandalwood base with a warm resinous-ambery aftertaste. Yawn. A barely pleasant and conventional Oriental fruity-powdery scent which tries to play the “random metallic-moldy crap unrelatedly juxtaposed to flowers and fruits” card to look creative and justify its surreal price.


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