Amouage Lineage: The Ancient Frankincense Trade at Sea
The ocean beckons to me. This isn’t a life for everyone, yet even the deadly rushing waters soothe my soul. The damp air brings a chill down my spine as it clings to my beard. The soothing steam from my ginger tea warms me up as the fiery elixir touches my lips. As I look around at the ship’s wooden planks that were stained by the ocean mist, while the smell of frankincense wafts in from my cabin, I feel at home.
The bags of myrrh and frankincense are lined up so neatly, as they should be. They are worth their weight in gold after all. We will reach the shores of the desert soon, and I will get paid. Is money worth it though? Being on land will never kindle my longing, the sound and feeling of the waves lull me to sleep. For now, I will just enjoy what time I have left on these beautiful waters. The sun never shines as bright as it doesn’t over the plane of the ocean, but I must remember to live in the now, and not worry about the future.
Amouage Lineage is the third fragrance that I have covered from their new Odyssey Collection. I must admit, I didn’t really love any of these when I first started testing them. However, over the week long tests I did on each, I gradually let them tell me their story, and I was quite surprised as the secrets that they held. I can always tell when a fragrance is inspired because it shows me a story or a picture in my mind, and that is the story that I told at the beginning of this article. It may be a bit unconventional based on other reviews that I have seen, but this is only my story with Lineage.
The Omani house’s new salty incense perfume opens up with a hot and arid ginger, both warm like a hot cup of ginger tea, and dry like the sands of a sun-kissed desert. The herbal feel of Sichuan pepper bolsters this, but I would say this is ginger dominant. Ginger of this quality almost gives off a dry woody smell, with a warmness that mimics peppery cedar.
This dry herbal-spicy combo melds in and elevates and incense smoke from olibanum, something that this entre line is based upon – a fragrant journey with frankincense. The silvery smoke, with its dry and resinous feeling, give way to a slightly earthy myrrh. Traces of slightly sweetened benzoin gives some contrast. Woody vetiver forms a bond with the ginger, akin to a freshly minted ship made with warmly spiced wooden boards.
The sheer uniqueness in this fragrance comes from the salty oceanic air, that feels a bit minerally, yet also inky. Just imagine that the sun baked some kelp on some rocks, but now a cool ocean breeze carries the scent around. That is probably the best way that I can describe it. The fragrance splays with the contrasts of vaguely wet and cold, yet also dry and warm, The contrasts is what took me a while to get. At first, I was wondering why they would put such a note in a beautifully rendered warm, spicy, and resinous scent. However, once I listened to the story, it became clear to me as to what it was saying.
Lineage is beautifully rendered in shades of orange and warm yellow, with a dusky gray backdrop. This scent won’t be for everyone, but yet again, the Omani powerhouse has created something unique as an ode to the fragrance fanatics that adore the brand. This one isn’t signifying the past as Purpose was. This is a taste of things to come. A step away from the mainstream and back into a firmly niche spot, that also doesn’t feel like they are trying to be artsy. It is very wearable and would make a wonderful rainy autumn day scent.
The fragrance is a return in some ways, as this is a very potent scent, full of character and bravado, that feels like a hug as you wear it. Yet the scent will leave a large sillage trail in the wake of its embrace, along with projecting well beyond an arm’s length while standing still. This isn’t Interlude Man levels of strong, but it’s certainly no slouch in the category.
I feel like this line has been unfairly criticized by people who never wanted to give it a chance. They blew it off at first whiff without a second thought. If you want to be a niche fragrance fan, then you must be patient and listen for the whispers. If I would have judged this line based on that, then the reviews would be negative. Luckily, I didn’t do that, and I found a gorgeous scent, that told me a story that I didn’t know existed. This is the true allure of niche fragrances.
What are your thoughts on the Odyssey Collection so far? Which one is your favorite? Did any of them tell you a story like they did for me? Next week, I will be doing the final review of this collection, Search which also happens to be my favorite of the line, so I am stoked for that!