Monday, March 18, 2013

L'Air du Desert Marocain by Andy Tauer

It's funny to me when I listen to people talk about childhood memories, because there is always one little thing that reminds them of some grandiose story that weaves in and out of believability. I humor them of course, as I expect others do for me.

When I came across L'Air du Desert Marocain (LDDM) by Andy Tauer, it was completely by accident. I was asked to tell someone what sample I would like to try with an order, and I said Oud Wood. However, I was given the Tauer, and after being upset for a moment, I sprayed it on and we were introduced. This was not a formal introduction, and in fact, it would have to wait for today, my second proper wearing, to really come and explain itself completely.

I was actually waffling quite about about LDDM, since while I have an affinity for incense in life in general, and more specifically in perfumery, I didn't think it did one particular thing perfectly, but rather several different things good enough by modern standards.

Just a few minutes ago, though, I was transported not to Morocco, but rather the basement of my grandparents old house on a small pond. I'm not sure why, but between the amber, incense, and coriander feel I get from it, I am reminded of that basement with every breath I'm drawing in.

Needless to say, when you can attach a memory to a scent, it ends up holding a special meaning for you. And thus, L'Air du Desert Marocain has etched itself in my memory so perfectly that I can't help but love it.

When it is first sprayed, I get a heavy dose of incense, and while it is not listed in the notes directly, I definitely get that distinct burning incense feel that so many fragrances claim as one of a kind (here's looking at you, Avignon). Still, this isn't as linear as most incense heavy fragrances, as it has a backbone of amber that adds a little sweetness, and when combined with the coriander creates a slightly sticky pile of seeds held together by a very faint smoke, again, like burning incense.

After it settles on the skin, the incense does the same and it reminds me of walking into my grandparents basement as a young child, hoping there is ice cream in the standalone freezer. Maple Walnut, my favorite. And, somewhat like that unique flavor, LDDM has a hint of sweetness that blossoms into an enveloping wrap that helps the incense stay calm. It's during this time that cedar and vetiver start to peak their head in, checking on the amber/incense combo to see if it's asleep.

Once things die down, nearly ten hours later, the woods start to become more apparent. Don't get me wrong, the combo is still there, but I embrace the change just like we all had to when the house was sold a few years back. But, unlike my family, I can relive my memories of that house in an instant with one spray. 

 I hesitate to say it becomes completely woody, as that would be a misguided judgement. Rather, it morphs into a peppery, woody base thanks to the vetiver that provides its signature rooty, earthiness that I've become fond of these last few months.

Performance and longevity are very good, though I'm not sure it forms a hand and tickles the nostrils of those six feet from me like some love to claim. Instead, I'd say it's arms-legth projection at most. Still, that's all I really want from a fragrance, and seeing as it lasts between ten and twelve hours on my skin, I can't say that I am disappointed.

To be honest, it's hard for me to judge it solely as a scent alone now, as it has woven itself into my memories. It sounds corny as all hell, and maybe it is, but in my mind scent memories are one of the most important benefits of fragrance collecting. After all, don't we all long for that one scent to take us back to a good time in our lives?

L'Air du Desert Marocain does just that, and as a result, has found its way into my collection. Sleep tight, Mr.Tauer. I'll call upon you when I want to reminisce.


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