Notes: Sichuan pepper, incense, bay rum, periploca (silk vine), cypriol, patchouli, ambranum (synthetic amber), Z11 (synthetic dry wood), sandalwood and cistus labdanum
Perfumers: Dora Arnaud & Pierre Negrin
I find that the notes list for almost every Amouage fragrance is only a part of the story, and I'm sure that's done deliberately. Creative Director Christopher Chong knows how to hold the public's interest by not revealing too much. And yet, he has been very much in support of transparency. An example of this is how some of the synthetic notes are officially listed along with some natural ones. As a consumer, I feel that the firm is giving consumers more credit than many other firms do. We're not being dragged towards being force-fed some abstract, phony story built on a shaky concept. There are strong aesthetics behind every Library Collection fragrance, and while each can be said to have a theme, in many ways, it is the wearer who is challenged to create their own story from the perfume. And if there's one thing perfume-obsessed people can do, it's spin a yarn.
Opus VI begins in a feminine vein with (unlisted) notes of jammy damask rose, orris, violet, jasmine grandiflorum and a light dusting of powdered honey. Amouage's famous frankincense-based incense accord is present from beginning to end, as are the very broad but lightweight woods. The amber accord is seamlessly blended into the base and I do not find that it's in the least overwhelming. In fact, I wouldn't mind if the amber were amped up a little more. No matter which floral elements are used in any Amouage blend created in the past few years, it is the uncommon, modern and unmistakable base that lasts for so long and is so recognizable. Notes will change from blend to blend, but they all exist on the same vibrational plane. The persistent and pleasurable thrum of woods, amber and incense with a tiny hint of sweetness by way of tonka or vanilla signals the arrival of the newest entry in The Library Collection. Opus VI is about as good as it gets for my tastes.
[sample sent to me by the company. I unfortunately have no information on when Opus VI will be available for sale in the US, but keep your eyes peeled at ParfumsRaffy.com]