My review of these fascinating scents from Slumberhouse has been forming in my head for almost two months now and finally I feel ready to write down some words. These scents are really the best and most intriguing I have encountered so far on my perfume journey!
Norne is described as "Fog caked needle, lichen, fern and moss perfume the nocturnal air beneath grandiose canopies of fir and hemlock...". The undertitle of this scent is "Ind i Fjeldkamrene" which, it seems, is a song by Ulver, a Norwegian folk music inspired black metal group. I´m not a fan of any kind of metal myself, but I do love scandinavian folk music! This particular song is inspired by the folklore belief that there were supernatural beings who governed the mountains. These could abduct the unvary and keep them imprisoned in the mountain. In the case of this song a maiden has been taken into the mountain and is begging with her last dying breath to be released therefrom. I found the lyrics and an English translation (because my Norwegian sucks) here.
The song paints a picture of a cold blue mountain in the wild north, it paints a picture of a dark night without moon and stars, of rain and of storm. To me the scent of this does not paint quite that same picture. This perfume is dark deep green and the scent of it is the same, a deep dark green coniferous forest. This is resinous and it carries the scent of recently cut wood, only darker not as fresh. I have never before smelled a perfume with such lifelike wood resins! On me there is no evergreen in this scent, only coniferous resins. Norne is neither complex nor simple. It does not change much on my skin but it is so wonderfully deep and evokative! Notable Scents did an interview with Josh Lobb, the perfumer behind Slumberhouse, in which he mentions that he doesn´t use top notes. That lack of top notes is definitely noticeable in these scents, and I like it! I like it a lot! This particular scent is also completely natural, made using only absolutes! Despite being all natural this scent has terrific staying power and fabulous sillage! If I could afford a full size I would buy it in a heartbeat!
Rume is described as "Inspired by a room - the explorer's hideaway. A burgundy/silver cologne with animalic pulse paired alongside a warm hush of clay, cola, filbert and hay. Rume is an idea, communicated through fragrance, of the desire to constantly seek out, experience and explore. An idea that contentedness is a poison and regret is the aftermath" and as having notes of bay, myrrh, labdanum and praline. I don´t have at all as much to say about this one as about Norne. I don´t quite understand the inspiration behind Rume, nor does it evoke any images. Many have waxed poetic about this scent, about it being resinous, spicy, smelling like gingerbread... But on me it just turns sour and the only one of the notes above that I can smell in this is the hay. It is rotting hay and a sour whiff of urine, it smells like a not so clean stable or barn... It´s definitely a chemistry malfunction though! When I try this on my favorite guinea pig, also known as my friend Blomma with the completely different skin chemistry, it is fabulously spicy and sweet with just a golden hint of dry hay! I love it on her but hate it on me...
Vikt is described as "Dark balsamic woods slowly oozing sweet metallic oils - motions of soft smokey black agar woods through syrupy bronze resins". I don´t have much to say about Vikt either, it isn´t very evokative for me and I don´t quite get the concept. I have a feeling that there is an interesting concept behind it, but it is hidden and so fails to add intrigue to the scent. This scent is so balanced that I can´t quite sense any individual notes. It is woody, but not in any traditional way, the resins are so sweet and deep. Not coniferous like in Norne but rather more exotic. There is a slight sour note in this too, but this one is much easier on my nose and it is not quite the sharp sourness of Rume but a more rounded sourness. I have heard said that oud can sometimes be a bit sour so maybe it is that. Still this scent is soft and gorgeous and I love it but I´d love it more if it didn´t fail to transport me.
Part two with reviews of Jeke and Grev and the free samples can be found here.