Bolt Of Lightning – JAR

My family has suffered this week, as on Monday, my wonderful auntie Ellen unexpectedly passed away in her sleep.
Perfume, as crazy as it sounds to people not as passionate as we are, is a huge emotional release for me, and I have been wearing fragrances of absolute beauty for comfort these last couple of days.
It seems like a perfect time to write about Bolt Of Lightning – whilst it is not my favourite in the line, I’ve wanted to explore it further since my video on tuberose fragrances. It is beautiful, and complex enough to lose myself in for a little while.

Bolt Of Lightning opens extremely vegetal, a potent ylang ylang? throws off a gigantic banana-skin accord, paired with an overwhelming blast of narcotic floral notes. The medicinal, feijoa aroma of methyl benzoate (a natural aspect of tuberose) pierces through the top notes: a green, astringent, powerful tropical fruit stench. It is this feijoa aroma which I initially mistook for green pepper – they smell nothing alike, but they have the same green, juicy quality – but with far different personalities.

After a couple of minutes, the almost mentholated opening has tamed to a level that smells like the opening of Tubereuse Criminelle… yes, it is THAT powerful before it even settles. The tuberose that begins to emerge from underneath is a cross between the sharper, orange blossom and jasmine heavy tuberose of the Lutens’, and the green, creamy, more tropical tuberose of Carnal Flower. The sweetness of both of those fragrances is missing entirely though, with the intense vegetal opening here, staining the flower with a bitter, raw earthiness.

The sharp intensity of the natural narcotics has a drug like effect to me, it is flourescent and literally dizzying. The tuberose is damp and dewy, there is no syrupy sweetness here; the smooth edges of the florals only begin to emerge as time goes on and the initial intensity of the opening has thoroughly evaporated. It’s at this point that I pick up on a whiff of jasmine and the merest hint of orange blossom, which similarly to Tableau De Parfums’ Loretta, gives off that kind of grape soda/bubblegum vibe, only here it is completely overwhelmed by the tuberose, unlike Loretta where the roles are reversed. There also seems to be a drop of Jar’s Jardenia in here, a delicate, mushroom-heavy white floral (gardenia) – which I initially mistook for the tuberose until they began to seperate slightly. This gardenia once recognized becomes almost on par in its intensity with the tuberose – and leads the fragrance to a relatively linear drydown.

Bolt Of Lightning has the humidity of Un Matin D’Orage’s opening: the scent of fresh dew – true to life – sitting on the leading floral’s petals. Bolt Of Lightning’s drydown also reminds me of Un Matin D’Orage’s clever sense of space… On first spritz, my nose is squished right against the soiled and overtly intense flower, but as it settles, the scent of BoL is that of a whole bunch of tuberose plants (and gardenias) from a distance. A hot, humid, greenhouse air surrounds them, only here it is, and smells, completely natural (unlike the stemone-heavy ozonic overload in the Annick Goutal). The subtlety of Bolt Of Lightning is hugely unexpected as it dries, lasting a few more hours as a damp, but heady floral reside before the late drydown of rich vanilla leads it to a soft finale.

Bolt Of Lightning is a beautiful, beautiful tuberose perfume, but undoubtably the most challenging there is out there. Tubereuse Criminelle is as light and as delicate as a friggin’ meringue in comparison. Having said that, I don’t understand the repulsion often described towards the opening – because it keeps my nose glued to hand (before the headache kicks in…) in fascination – it’s gorgeous. A must sniff for tuberose lovers, and those interested in avant-garde perfumery, but the balanced simplicity of the heart is enough to capture anyone. Another brilliant fragrance in the JAR lineup.

Bolt Of Lightning 30ml JAR – $$$$ (500+ euros)

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22 thoughts on “Bolt Of Lightning – JAR

  1. sinnerman01 says:

    Hi mate ! I’m sorry to hear about your loss, u are truly lucky to becable to find beauty in simplest places such as perfume . This fragrance sounds luxe indeed ! It’s sounds stunningly beautiful , thanks for sharing! All the best to u and your family .

    • Thanks Tim I appreciate that.
      Bolt of Lightning is a beautiful piece of work, and yep super luxe! But, it should smell super luxe for the obscene price D: Sooo shouldn’t have sampled these, I want them all.
      Thanks for reading :)

  2. Freddie – I am so sorry to hear about your Aunt, my condolences to you and your family. And you right, perfume can help keep you sane when all things seem to be crumbling around you…as for tuberose for sanity.. I’m not sure if that work for me. Take care – xoxox Steve

  3. poodle says:

    So sorry about your loss. It’s good that you can find some solace in your fragrances. Unexpected losses are never easy to deal with.
    JAR is way out of my price range. I won’t even try them for fear I might love them.

    • Thank you poodle.
      They are way out my price range too – this one is anyway, or I’d buy it in a second. On my vacation at the end of the year I’m REALLY considering picking up a bottle of Jarling. I think it’s one of the cheaper ones… at around 300 euros? :/ Still… it’s a once in a lifetime purchase anyway, a car costs more and this will probably last longer :) Will just have to see how much money I’ve got left at that point.

      • poodle says:

        Well, you only live once and it’s only money. It’s nice to save for the future but there’s no guarantee the future will happen. Enjoy things while you can. Get that bottle of Jarling. As long as the bills are paid there’s nothing wrong with treating yourself. Ha, if only I practiced what I preach.

      • Haha! Well, you preach very persuasively :P I’ll be sure to reexplore the JAR range before I go so I’m set on one, it would be something lovely to come back with. I wanna do a video on the JARs soon too – spread the word :P
        Hope you’re keeping well poodle!

  4. Ines says:

    I’m sorry to hear about your loss.
    I can imagine perfume being able to help – and Bolt of Lightning certainly fits as something to give you a bolt.
    I was lucky to smell it this summer in Paris and I wish it wasn’t so expensive so I could get myself some – to me it smelled exactly like the perfume I imagined one spring evening after a thunder shower passed and the smell of green wet leaves, dirt on asphalt and electricity in the air were left behind.
    I find it incredible that they managed to capture all that in a perfume using my favourite note – tuberose. :)

    • Hey Ines thanks for getting in touch.
      Wow it sounds like Bolt Of Lightning was made for you! You got all that out of in when smelling it in the store? I imagine most people run away when they smell that opening :P It is absolutely beautiful though and I worry in this review that I play down the heart/drydown a little bit – it’s beautiful though.
      It’s unfortunate that this is the most expensive of the line, but they must know how good it is! Still, I don’t think it’s the JAR I’d choose to buy :P What are your thoughts on the price of these? Would you invest?

      • Ines says:

        Oh, I wish I could invest! It’s just not something I can explain to myself as possible (and I would need to save for a long time in order to have that amount to spend). Although if things change and I get a better paid job, I might convince myself. ;)
        Btw, I got all that from having it sprayed on my arm. It was the one I chose to try and I didn’t ask for the price.
        It would deifnitely be the one I would choose to buy though. :)

      • Still think Jarling takes my number 1 spot if I were to buy – I find it fascinating :D Can’t wait to visit the store, but yeh, the price is scary D:

  5. TaffyJ says:

    So sorry about the loss of our Auntie. My favorite Aunt passed away two years ago and I miss her every day.

    Your description of BOL is wonderful. Un Matin D’orage is one of my faves, so I may have to search out a sample of BOL.

    • Hi Taffy, thanks for your lovely reply ((( )))
      A sample of BOL will cost a bomb so I hope you enjoy it if you manage to get one! For the first twenty minutes, it is a powerhouse of challenging notes, when it settles, that’s when I see the similarities – not so much in scent (as for me UMdO turns into a fig whereas BOL stays a white floral), but definitely in feel – that light, translucent floral bouquet from a distance overlaid with the scent of stormy days :D Very romantic haha.

  6. Cindy says:

    I live in California, does anybody know where i can buy this product? Thanks a lot!

  7. Cindy says:

    Thank you Smellythoughts!

  8. Cindy says:

    LOL. Yes, the price is a bit “scarry” :D and about “ridiculously exclusive”… forget about it! hahaha
    Thank you very much smellythoughts! You are so helpful. :)

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