AZMAN Perfumes I Am Darkness Review (Nutt Wesshasartat) 2022 + Mysterious Incense Draw – ÇaFleureBon Perfume Blog

AZMAN Perfumes I Am Darkness Review (Nutt Wesshasartat) 2022 + Mysterious Incense Draw - ÇaFleureBon Perfume Blog


I am a creature of passion A messenger of liberty
I am the oldest friend And the latest flame

I am timeless
A tradition of renewal An eternal spring
I am forever and ever

I am a cathedral
A spaceship
I travel through orbits And minds

I am an angel
I am known to all I am allegiance
I am darkness – author is a dear friend of Husen Baba’s  Raef©

Think of darkness, not as the bringer of bad dreams and echoing footsteps, nor as the things that go bump in the night, nor the shadows that creep and reach across the walls and floors when you’re alone. This darkness is warm as swaddling, the sooty blackness of embers in the grate flickering out as they leave their warmth behind; the cobalt blue edge to the horizon as night falls; the velvety drift to much-needed sleep; the gentle voice that murmurs in the lightless recesses of the holy places where gods and men converse in silence, “I Am Darkness.”

Husen Baba

Not since Andre Lebreton’s brilliant Grimoire has there been a green incense that caught me quite like I Am Darkness. Dubai-based AZMAN Perfumes has created a beautiful incense fragrance built, unconventionally, on a chypre structure. The result is a mysterious, smoky green scent with a warm, floral heart and woody base that still somehow seems airy and warm. While the name I Am Darkness may suggest somberness, Brand founder Husen Baba explains that it relates to the mysterious, spiritual aspect of incense rather than of something foreboding: “Incense is closely associated to templates of different religions of the East and West. So, it’s a symbol of feeling inner safety and happiness. The name … gives a hint to its intensity.”

Thai perfumer Nutt Wesshasartat

Thai perfumer Nutt Wesshasartat, who had been on Baba’s radar for some time, was chosen for I Am Darkness because of his facility with white florals, including a key element of AZAMAN Perfumes I Am Darkness, frangipani flower, which is native to Thailand. Frangipani’s presence in the perfume, though subtle, is to act as a bridge between the bright fruit notes of the opening, the sandy incense heart, and the heavier, woody and resinous notes of the base by providing a trilling floralcy that keeps the fragrance aloft.

In its earliest moments, I Am Darkness recalls Grimoire’s fumy verdancy, but then jaunts off in a fruity-floral direction. The fragrance opens with a gorgeous bouquet of bergamot, pink grapefruit, pepper and jasmine, all twined together with incense. Looking at the notes, I expected a punch of tartness and the sometimes-awkward clang of citrus and frankincense I have found in other fragrances, and a pungent pepper bang. But here, Wesshasartat has tamed the acidity of the fruit and left its brightness and floralcy intact, which gives I Am Darkness sparkle without piquancy. The pepper bouncing around in the top settles down quickly and adds heat rather than punch, lighting a cozy fire underneath the incense and providing a warm entrée for the woody, resinous notes to come.

The chypre backbone to I Am Darkness is most evident in the way the citrus notes, led by bergamot, tease out the oakmoss and give the fragrance an overall sensation of dry greenness, a quality I have found in many old-school chypres, and which I love. Weaving in and out of the chypre architecture a light oud and frankincense ribbon, smelling creamy and woody, almost like grated sandalwood. As it settles on the skin for the next few hours, I Am Darkness is so many things that shouldn’t work together but do: the creaminess of the frangipani and jasmine washing over the light oud, tart fruit and smoky incense clinching like two teens who hated each other all throughout first term and are now snogging in the janitor’s closet, and chypre directing it all with the deftness of a maestro. It’s wonderful.

AZMAN Perfumes I am Darkness

Last year’s Two Minutes After The Kiss, a rose-oud fragrance, showed just how splendid this classic combination can be when made with real Cambodian oud and high-quality rose absolutes instead of relying on synthetics. I Am Darkness proves that AZMAN Perfumes can do the same justice to frankincense and oud, while giving it a twist that is at once inventive and cohesive. Folks, keep your eyes on this brand. It’s bloody good. (ed note: AZMAN Perfumes Manjoon was recently reviewed by Nicoleta Tomsa.)

Notes: Fir, bergamot, black pepper, grapefruit, Cambodian oud, cananga (ylang-ylang), jasmine, coffee, frangipani – white champaca, amyris, frankincense, labdanum, oakmoss.

Disclaimer: Sample of AZMAN Perfumes I Am Darkness kindly provided by AZMAN Perfumes. My opinions, as always, are my own.

Lauryn Beer, Senior Editor

Thanks to the generosity of AZMAN Perfumes we have  a 50 ml bottle of I Am Darkness for one registered reader in the EU, UK, U.S. or UAE. To be eligible, please leave a comment saying what appeals to you about AZMAN Perfumes I Am Darkness based on Lauryn’s review, and where you live. Draw closes 2/24/2022.

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We announce the winners only on-site and on our Facebook page, so “like” ÇaFleureBon and use our blog feed or your dream prize will be just spilled perfume.

This content was originally published here.

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