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VioletChaos

Samhain V1: the Original 2002 Prototype

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MOD NOTE: Yes, this is a prototype and we have another review sub-forum for protos. But as the Lab website tagged this as part of the Halloween 2018 release, I am following suit and placing this review topic here in Halloweenie.

 

Were running out of room at the Lab, and its been a long, long time since weve had a trunk show. When Brian and I were rifling through the prototype and snafu shelves a few weeks ago, we dug up two busticated Snake Oils one that was a mispour of Lemon Scented Sticky Bat, and another involved an Aggravated Vanilla Incident and we unearthed the very first Samhain prototype from 2002.

 

We dont have time to do a full-blown trunk show right now, so were offering these three for sale. Theyre in very, very limited quantity.

Years ago, there was a retailer in PA that gave me what she *believed* was the Original Samhain in an unmarked bottle. The scent was one of cathedrals and mass and spooky autumnal things and everything lovely and creepy. I eventually traded the bottle away during a hasty destash, and now we -perhaps- are meeting again. Let's see if I know this scent from another life...

 

In The Bottle: I get all the various spices (heavy on the nutmeg and allspice) and some of the sweet apple in the background.

 

Wet On Skin: The damp woods and black patch have entered the fray, but there's not misbehaving, which is pure relief, as "damp" notes, like water and ozone, are usually death notes on me. But so far, this scent is rich in atmosphere with no obvious drawbacks.

 

Dry Down: A sweeter, spicier version of the typical Samhain, which, for me, is preferable. I'm getting all the good aspects of the note list and none of the bad. The aging has perhaps done this proto a great service! While I remain unsure if this scent is connected to that "mystery bottle" of long ago, I'm glad to have this in my collection either way!

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This is my first encounter with Samhain. I've avoided for fear of it being too fruity, but I felt I had to go for this if only for the reason that it's from the year I was born.

 

In the bottle: Crisp, juicy apple. Not quite the smell of a single note - there's a hint of something more complex under the surface. It glows.

 

Wet: Still apple, with a bit of maybe incense or tobacco. You have to get really close to smell anything but the apple. I also detect dead leaves.

 

Dry: Finally, the apple recedes and lets some of the other notes have their moment. It's delicately warm, a little fuzzy. It reminds me of a very gentle All Souls, though not as sweet or thick.

 

Verdict: Like the dampened aroma of an incensed apple pie.

 

EDIT: I have had an epiphany. That complexness I mentioned in the bottle, and the fuzziness when it's dry, is definitely mullein. I knew there was something I wasn't familiar with to identify upon first test, and I found it! Discovered while grinding dried mullein leaves in a mortar and pestle. New favorite note.

Edited by monocainsheresy

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This is the version of Samhain I have always dreamed about. I do like to wear Samhain in the autumn, and have bottles from a few different years. Usually they are heavier on the fir and woods, with a slight medicinal scent. This one is sweeter, more fruit-forward, and lacks the medicinal note. I am so happy I was able to get a bottle!

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It's very similar to my (almost-finished) bottle of 2005 Samhain. I'm curious to do a side-by-side comparison. This version is a little more forward with the pumpkin/hay note that I get from 2005.

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Just like @monocainsheresy, this is my first time trying Samhain. And I know it's not the standard version, but boyyyy do i love this one.
It smells mostly like fresh, juicy apples to me, but there is a lot of sexier, interesting things going on in the background—an Autumn forest, full of damp pinewood and browning leaves, perhaps a distant chimney or campfire burning, the remnants of a pie crust with vanilla and nutmeg, and some dampness in the air from last night's rain. 

It smells just like Autumn should—sweet, spicy and robust. I can't stop sniffing my wrist.
I have a feeling I'd like newer Samhain as well, but i can't imagine enjoying it as much as this one tbh!

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Deep dark blackberry-apple notes over damp leaves and a whiff of patchouli. This is sweet, spicy, rooty, and in general smells like the autumn forest fall. Full of life, death, and everything in between. Good throw and wear length.

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