So, following on from my previous incense post, I aim to list and briefly describe some incense fragrances that stand out for me. Like I said in my roses post, this is not even remotely a comprehensive list and very subjective. So, drumroll, dim the lights...
Incense Pure by Sonoma Scent Studio - Brief review here. If you like your incense unadulterated and uncluttered, Incense Pure may be just up your alley. I certainly love it. Like a lot of seemingly simple perfumes though, Incense Pure achieves something far more complicated, without ever seeming boring.
Incense Series by Commes des Garcons - I think almost anyone who has an interest in incense fragrances will have heard of these and probably tried a good few. The most well known in the series is probably Avignon, which is a churchy, very frankincense-heavy take on the genre. The others are very interesting too. I could certainly recommend Kyoto and Ouarzazate, both quite meditative and very different to Avignon. I haven't tried Jaisalmer or Zagorsk, but I have read quite good things about them.
Cardinal by Heeley - Another very incense-focused perfume, particularly in the first half. Later it becomes much woodier, but is a lovely fragrance.
10 Corso Como - ok, I know a lot of people would classify this as a sandalwood perfume and yes, it is. However, there is enough incense in here to make my list. A classic.
Profumum Roma Olibanum - another good example of a fairly straight up incense perfume. It is lovely, but as I mentioned a few months ago, it smells a bit like a toilet cleaner used in one of our local hotels! Still good though.
Andy Tauer Incense Extreme and Incense Rose - I only group these together because they are great incense perfumes. As the name implies, Incense Rose could also be discussed as a rose perfume, but both perfumes have hefty doses of incense and like most Tauers' serious longevity. If you don't like these, you will need to scrub, as they won't fade quickly.
Etro Messe de Minuit - woah, now we're talking. I think this is a love-it-or-hate-it perfume. It smells moldering and musty to me, like chronic dampness in the church crypt. I think there's a fair amount of Myrrh in here too. One thing I can say, is that this is like nothing else you've smelled before.
Lots by Amouage - being a lover of incense and Amouage, its no wonder I love so much from this house. I could write pages, but suffice to say that Amouage uses a very distinctive incense note in its deployment of Omani Silver Frankincense. Try Jubilation XXV for starters.
Annick Goutal - Encens Flamboyant. Not totally up my alley, but it has a lot of fans. Quite thick and heavy, but worth trying.
Olivier Durbano Black Tourmaline. This is complex and long lasting. It's difficult to decribe what I like about it, but it is very unique.
L'Artisan Dzongha - this is what I'd term a spicy incense. It has a lot going on, without being that strong. While we're dealing with L'Artisan, I would also classify Timbuktu as an incense fragrance. Both are very good.
Serge Lutens Serge Noir - funnily enough, I can't really think of many incense-dominant Lutens perfumes. Gris Clair has a feel of it, as does Encens et Lavande, while Serge Noir is possibly the strangest. Its opening in particular is feral and very odd.
Guerlain Bois D'Armenie - smells a lot like those paper incense strips. Certainly different to a lot of what I've listed so far. If I have a criticism it is that I find this one very slight and subtle.
So, I've come to the end of my incense list. I know many of you will read this and probably think that I've missed off a good few, and I'm sure I have. Let me know what you think of my choices and feel free to recommend a few of your favourites.