Spring has arrived or, as Robin Williams aptly put it, “Spring is nature’s way of saying, ‘Let’s party!'” You can see the grass thrusting out of the ground, flowers spreading their pollen so indiscriminately, and animals in heat putting out their scent. Many members of the animal kingdom use pheromones to signal their intent, to perpetuate their genetic code, or stated simply, to fuck. While there is some debate about the existence of human pheromones, most biologists say that if they exist, they really aren’t that influential. Being human, if nature didn’t provide, we provide for ourselves with Science! Chemistry, botany, zoology mixed together with creativity and an understanding of passion. Some of the best people in the perfume business who understand this mad dance of heady science and base desire are Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab. It is in their Lupercalia release that they let their freak flag fly and have perfumes to attract the interest and inflame the passion of the object of your desire. What you do after that is your own affair but let me just say that sweat does intensify the effect.
While we have perfumes based on love poetry like Baudelauire’s The Balcony which hints at secret sweet assignations with Bourbon vetiver, red patchouli, honey, helichrysum, and black rose and Shelley’s Love’s Philosophy with talks of the purity of lover with a hint of spiciness with vanilla, saffron, and cream, Black Phoenix is being a lot more direct this year. For instance, Bright Red Dildo.
Now this is inspired by a short humorous scene written a Greek poet, Herodas, who wrote in the 3rd century BCE. So it’s classical. Still, Bright Red Dildo. Even its scent, red leather and honey, isn’t all that subtle either. Then there is Signior Dildo. No, don’t give me that look–I am not making this up. It is a satirical poem written by notorious rake and Gentleman of the Bedchamber (actual court position), John Wilmot, Lord Rochester in 1673. The scent is a mix of orris, violet leaf, narcissus, and Madagascar vanilla to remind one of pearls and ivory. And…I’m going to leave that one right there. Then there’s Dragon’s Boner. Yeah again. This perfume is filled to bursting with dragon’s blood resin, white cream, pear blossom, and white honey. Awful lot of white in there.
Next, we have erotica. It’s not porn if it’s over one hundred years old. But just in case, you may want to be careful about viewing these perfumes if you are using a work computer. First we have Fleurette’s Purple Snails, created by illustrator Franz von Bayros, who captured fin de siecle decadence with images of ladies in various imaginative poses, naughty implements, and an animal or two. Because of this, Bayros was also captured by the police force of more than one European city. For example, there is The Mirror, where a young lady is examining her ample posterior in a sumptuous bedroom while her pet monkey does the same. You have white lilies gilded by sparkling grey amber, raw white clove, white musk, Oman frankincense, and pink pepper which mixes the innocence curiosity with the innate sexuality of the scene. Then there is Adante con Fantasia, where a voluptuous woman is playing with a young man’s instrument… literally. She’s using a violin bow. This scent is a honeyed lilac fougere, a mixture of masculine and feminine scents, with a hint of lime for that extra kick.
We also have that Black Phoenix classic, Shungas: Edo era Japanese erotic art. These woodblock prints run the spectrum of erotica from standard couplings to fantastical imagery versing on phantasmagoria. Night Scene is on the more literal side of the spectrum with a couple enjoying the night air… with their genitals. The perfume is reminiscent of a Japanese garden with wisteria blossoms and lemon peel, but the passionate young lovers add blue musk and white frankincense. Blossoming Vulva is so literal, it verges on the gynecological. But the fragrance of golden amber and bourbon vanilla with sweet oak, blue lotus, and tea blossom give the impression of a delicate oriental flower ready to open its petals. Then there is Phallus Parade which is a group of anthropomorphic penises. Again, I am not making this up. This scent is a lot more masculine with leather and black tea with champa blossom, incense, ambrette seed, and black truffle accord. You get a feeling of a dark forest with big tall powerful trees with a lot of sap.
Please hurry and get your perfumes since the scents talked about here will go away on April 24th. If you do get your hands on something, whisper into Black Phoenix’s ear that Needcoffee sent you. It would give us so much pleasure.