7/7/12

Bang (Marc Jacobs)


I'd like to start by saying something nice - I love the bottle for Bang. Its metallic, hit-by-a-car aesthetic is fun to look at, and surprisingly easy to hold. Must be all those straight lines curved inward. Bravo to Mr. Jacobs' package design team.


Now, I learned something today while wearing Bang. I stopped into Marshalls and found an EDT/Aftershave set of Sung Homme, which I promptly purchased. It's rare to find Sung Homme in aftershave form. I gave my purple acquisition a quick spritz in the parking lot, just to make sure it was good (Marshalls doesn't store its fragrances correctly). It was, and actually smelled better than my current bottle, which makes me wonder if it's an older formula. But after a few minutes on skin, I had a difficult time telling Sung apart from Bang. Some of this was olfactory fatigue, but the thrust of my story is that Sung Homme has a lot more black pepper in it than I thought. Fortunately, it also has a lot of other stuff in it to balance the spiciness out, like violet leaf, vetiver, carnation, geranium, and rose.

Bang, on the other hand (literally), is much less complicated. It opens with a pleasant burst of fruity pink pepper, which maintains its fresh ambiance for a good twenty minutes on skin, and is balanced with some well-rendered patchouli. It gradually segues into something with more kick - a black and white pepper accord that combines with a dry, nondescript woody note. Ninety minutes after application, the pepper trio fades away, leaving just that one spare wood note. There's literally nothing else to Bang. That's it.

If that's enough for you, and you happen to love pink pepper, maybe Bang is something you should try. If you prefer pepper as an olfactory condiment, and not the main dish, you're better off with Sung Homme, or any other classic masculine chypre or fougère. Bang is, in a word, boring.
















6 comments:

  1. I think you might have had olfactory fatigue. You should give Bang another try, maybe putting it on in the morning before you wear anything else. I get a lot more out of it than just a dry wood smell. I smell a lot of incense and patchouli in the drydown, and I think it's wonderful. Of course I also smell a boring cedar note too, but the patchouli and incense liven it up.

    I don't like one-note wood frags either, especially when it's cedar. I think Bang is great, but on the other hand, you're not the only person to say that it's one dimensional. It's got its fair share of negative reviews on basenotes.

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    1. Oh don't get me wrong, I was enjoying Bang long before I re-purchased Sung. I did neglect to mention the patchouli, thanks for reminding me (readers take note). Did not get any incense at all, though. Guess the wood note is cedar, and that would figure because I'm not a huge fan of cedar.

      I don't think Bang is a bad fragrance by any stretch of the imagination. It definitely smells good. But the different facets of pepper don't do anything for me, and to my nose the pepper is the star of the show. Wondering now if Bang Bang is any better/worse.

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  2. Funny, I found the bottle awkward to hold and a bit tacky. Form follows function is a principle that isn't stricktly adhered to when it comes to fragrance bottles...

    The scent itself, pleasing but lacking in longevity.

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    1. The bottle could easily be classified as "tacky," no doubt. But it's definitely not a "form follows function" bottle. I thought Bang lacked in longevity also. I got two solid hours out of it, and that was all. But it was nice enough while it lasted.

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  3. I tried Bang once in TJMAXX. It was all pepper, all the time. A couple of hours into the wear, I developed a headache. /-;

    On me, of course (Murphy's Law of Longevity...), it had fantastic staying power. Interesting how perceptions vary!

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    1. Longevity with this scent is probably a chemistry issue, and maybe in terms of identifying certain notes as well. I agree though that Bang is all pepper, all the time. Well, it's 90% pepper, and 10% patchouli and woodiness. I was actually surprised the pepper wasn't more biting and in my face with Bang. There are probably other pepper fragrances out there with a lot more kick. So Bang is more of a tame pepper scent, if that's possible.

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