Archives 69 – Etat Libre D’Orange

Archives 69 opens sweet, and fizzy – with soapy aldehydes up top and a sherbet candy underneath. The soap entwines with some sweet orange, and slowly begins to give way to some pepper spiced fruit.

The fruits start bright and berry-like, playful and immature, before they get dense and a little “stodgy” – bringing to mind the prune-y/date-y fruit of Feminite Du Bois. This sweet, sticky fruit is counterbalanced in weight by a continuing translucent fizz – that no longer smell like the aldehydes – but a spiced floral fruitiness that hovers above the entire composition. The peppered spice also smells like it has a hint of ginger in it? Maybe even cardamom – it’s subtle whatever it is.

An “off” camphorous vibe comes in once the aldehydes fully disappear, its bizarre becuase whilst there is patchouli in the drydown - the camphor doesn’t seem to be coming from this, it’s like its own being. It brings with it a metallic edge, that I pretty much consider Etat Libre D’Orange’s signature. A smidge of smoky incense joins in, heads up top, and quickly becomes a leading player along with the remains of the now, slightly nauseating berry note. As I have already said (I just have to reinforce this becuase the description sounds so heavy) – all these dark notes have a great lightness to them, they are verging on translucent and the fragrance still manages to bring to mind the colour of its label.

The floral that trails through the heart of the fragrance is listed as “orchid”, I have a lot of orchids in the house, and I can’t smell them at all – so, I’m not gonna lie and say I smell orchid specifically, maybe I need to smell some EO.
As it begins to dry down, the subtle patchouli is sweetened by some benzoin, but the most prominent are the musk and the incense. The musk blended with the florals gives Archives 69 a slightly dated, classical feel, but with the fizzy of berries up top adding an extremely modern edge. The incense that starts so metallic, has a bitter resinous facet that is more obvious in the drydown. It’s a big bucket of textures, that somehow, is pulled off very well.

Unfortunately I don’t find it anywhere near as interesting as I hoped it would be (good job I didn’t blind buy this as I planned), but it is still a solid fragrance in the Etat Libre D’Orange lineup and definitely one of the most accessible. A playful fruity floral with a metallic, resinous and camphorous vibe throughout, nice.

Archives 69 50ml Etat Libre D’Orange - £74 Les Senteurs

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9 thoughts on “Archives 69 – Etat Libre D’Orange

  1. lucasai says:

    I want some Antiheros to try! :-D

    • I’ll try review Antiheros soon – there’s just little to write about it. Lavender + soap, that’s it, not my kindda thing :(

      • lucasai says:

        It’s MY kindda thing, that’s why I want to sample. I need to try it to check if it will beat my future perfect lavender. If it won’t be better then my perfect lavender is Eau de Gloire, Pd’E.

      • Eau de Gloire is nice. My lavender is Gris Clair, very closely followed by Kiki Vero Profumo, maybe on par. I’m yet to try Reverie Au Jardin which hopefully will smash them all.

      • lucasai says:

        Yes, it’s nice. I like Gris Clair too, but only when I’m in a mood for it. Reverie Au Jardin, Tauer. I know few of them, not this one.

      • Then you must explore the rest, the Tauer line is exceptional, so many outstanding compositions :D

      • lucasai says:

        I wish their samples were a little less expensive. Spending 26€ on 5 samples is quite a lot to me. I’d rather save this money to buy a nice perfume decant…

        Ah, I will be buying Rose Anonyme anyday/any week

  2. This sounds like it might be a patchouli of the patchouli I don’t like (old hippie). Went to a play last night and sat next to somebody wearing the patchouli oil…yecccch. Even my generous spritzing of Kilian Incense Oud couldn’t cover it up!

    • Mmm I love smelling oldschool patchouli oil. Nah this isn’t the stuff, I think Borneo is more what you’re thinking :D This is much more about incense and pink berries – the camphor is it’s own beast, very strange. I’m sure you smelt fantastic Steve!

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