I have two such in mind now, they are both strong out of the gate in a manner that took me aback at first. I have worn them both a number of times now, and this evening I have one on each wrist. Anya's Garden Kewdra was when I first tried it one night, at the first instant, almost bitter and astringent. I fell asleep with it on, and had fitful dreams, from which I woke to find myself enveloped in comforting sweetness and beauty. I didn't understand where it was coming from and wondered what it was, then realized, the Kewdra had turned into something completely different. It turned into a gardenia (lightly toned by boronia and angelica), couched in the musk notes of patchouli, sandalwood, ambrette and beeswax. I inhaled deeply then, it was indeed of an unusual light sweetness and beauty enough to calm a sudden wakefulness in the middle of the night, a strong effect for such a gentle sweetness. I suspect the ambergris was the element that bound everything together and magnified the beauty, as musks are wont to do.
I experienced an even more extreme version of this development with Dionysus by Lord's Jester, Adam Gottschalk. The start was very shocking for me, it felt like a strong chypre without top notes. Then, almost unbelievably, it mellowed into a tobacco honey plum with polished wood, very rich and full bodied. Reminded me of the first cigarette of the day, with black coffee, in a warm well kept room with polished floors.
Both of these scents have a strong warm musk base that lastly comes forward and binds to the skin, veiling it with a soft narcotic glow. Narcotic because they are both relaxing and heady at the same time. Like an opiate dream, the acrid smokiness slowly turning into something dense, mellow sweet and then intoxicating.
Above, a French postcard, nude smoking opium ( see the Opium Museum for more images)
Please continue to visit these other sites for more on these and other natural perfumes in the Musk series:
Yahoo Natural Perfumery group
I Smell Therefore I Am – Abigail Levin
Perfume Shrine – Elena Vosnaki
The Non Blonde – Gaia Fishler
indieperfumes – here, me, Lucy Raubertas
Bitter Grace Notes – Maria Browning
CaFleureBon Michelyn Camen, Mark Behnke, Ida Meister, Skye Miller, Marlene Goldsmith
Olfactarama – Pat Borow
First Nerve – Avery Gilbert
Olfactory Rescue Service – Ross Urrere
Grain de Musc – Denyse Beaulieu