11/7/17

Only The Brave Wild (Diesel)

It was the summer of 2014, and Diesel felt the need to issue another Only The Brave flanker. Let me quickly say that the summer of 2014 was a good one for me: I bought my first house. The low point of the year was probably this fragrance, although it is successful enough on its own terms.

Summer frags usually go in one of three directions: chemical aquatic with sugary "froot" notes, chemical "grey citrus" with a sour, sometimes salty aftertaste, and derivative balmy suntan lotion scents with varying adjustments to what is basically just Coppertone. (I like the smell of Coppertone, especially since it was reformulated into jasmine-infused Brut). OTB Wild, with its ugly green fist punching at my face yet again, is arguably the most sophisticated fragrance in the OTB line, as it eschews the bland, overly blended approach of its predecessors in favor of a slightly more daring herbal affair. My favorite Fragrantica review, by member "Voodoochild82," reads:
"Tried this out in Kohl's today. Please tell me I'm not the only one who thinks this smells like pickle juice?"
No Voodoochild82, you're not the only one. I also got a bit of a spiced pickle feeling off the very top (on paper), but this scent has some depth and direction. The fragrance boasts a crystal clear peppered lemongrass accord, its liveliness smudged together with lavender. This kind of totally unexpected seriousness is something that I'd sooner seek out in something by Jacomo or Puig. I thought I'd smell a dull grapefruit citrus top, and instead got bitter greens. Cool.

It doesn't take long for a tonka, nutmeg, and somewhat vanillic (but still rather green) coconut accord to push through the lemongrass. This all sounds pretty good as you read it, but it's more than a little dull, and the coconut never fully materializes into the floral creaminess I've come to expect in good summer lotions. The whole thing remains overly staid and wispy, as if the perfumers self consciously wished their dilettante approach to Diesel's standard brief could be taken by forgiving Europeans as being artistic and mature. They did an OK job, but really, just put Vanilla Fields in your beach bag, and move on with your day.



8 comments:

  1. That peppered lemongrass over tonka, nutmeg & coconut accord sounds kind of interesting. I wonder why lemongrass isn't used more in western perfumery? Lemongrass is one of those rare naturals that can quickly overwhelm with it's nuclear sillage & longevity for light years though.

    Were those Kosher Dills or Bread & Butter that this 'fume opened with?

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    1. Definitely Kosher Dills. I think that's why lemongrass isn't used more often. Done on the cheap it sort of has a salad effect, and here it just barely makes the cut and smells decent.

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  2. something that I'd sooner seek out in something by Jacomo or Puig.

    Now I am intrigued. I love Puig's Agua Brava and Quorum, but I've never heard of Jacomo. Maybe they are a US only brand? What do you recommend?

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    1. Silences is the one to get. Cold green, bitter, mossy, floral, but very serene and natural, like a demure Chanel 19, or the female flanker to Grey Flannel, and it's a mere $20. This fragrance exists to nullify the need to ever own the Chanel.

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    2. Thanks. It's for sale in the Netherlands at a very reasonable €32.50 for 100 ml. I guess I'd never seen it before because it is marketed as a scent for women.

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    3. Yeah the nice thing about "green" fragrances - and I mean really, truly, naturalistically GREEN (bitter, cold, powdery) - is that they're pretty unisex. I see little reason why a woman couldn't wear the uber-green Grey Flannel, just as I think a guy can very easily wear Silences and Chanel 19. They just seem to be very gender neutral experiences. Silences has a bit of a powdery-sweet floral element in the drydown, but when I compare it to the more overt coumarinic violet aspect of Grey Flannel, I think the Beene scent is actually more floral. Beene also reissued (under license of EA) their 1980s EDT called Bowling Green, which is the answer for any guy who feels threatened by GF. But now I'm getting off on a tangent. So I'll quit while I'm ahead.

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  3. From Jacomo, I'd also rec Jacomo de Jacomo. At least if you want a true spice bomb

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    1. And for even truer spice bombs, try Spice Bomb.

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