Like A*Men, Kouros, and Joop! Homme, Narciso Rodriguez For Him is a fragrance that pisses a lot of people off, and people love it or loathe it. Count me in as one of its fans.
This fragrance is whacked, it's so out there. Its bleak looking charcoal gray bottle suits the scent perfectly. Narciso Rodriguez For Him makes prodigious use of violet leaf, an ingredient that, like iris root, isn't famous for lifting people's spirits. Violet leaf has been used in men's fragrances a lot during the past fifteen years, especially in sport fragrances and so-called "fresh woody" scents. Fragrances like Eau de Cartier and Gucci Pour Homme II use violet leaf to give an airy, dry and transparent quality to them.
Not so here. Narciso Rodriguez For Him is a heavy, sludgy and dark aromatic fragrance that would smell right at home in a mausoleum. This is a modern-day powerhouse. There's also a huge amount of oakmoss and patchouli in this fragrance. These two ingredients add a cold, damp feel to the entire scent, like standing near a swamp in the middle of the night. Its smell also reminds me of wet ashes from a fireplace. Associations with wet concrete have also been made by other reviewers, and those aren't too far off the mark.
My descriptions aren't exaggerations - this scent really does make me think of graveyards, swamps, etc.. It's not that I enjoy thinking about death and blackness. What I'm trying to convey is how unique and fascinating this fragrance is. Its grim darkness and mastodon-like weight virually guarantee that people will have strong opinions about Naricso Rodriguez For Him, and that certainly is the case. It may not be a pretty or happy scent, but it's still a work of art and it smells great. However, it's a fragrance I only wear on occasion, when I'm in just the right mood to wear it, due to its dark and doomy smell.
Like Black Sabbath for your nose.
MY RATING: 8/10
Fragrance House: Narciso Rodriguez