As one who fully embraced the disco culture of the 1970’s there was one thing I loved about the music; the vocal hooks. All of the great disco anthems had one or two lyrics repeated many, many times usually over a smoking bass line. Disco was about dancing not contemplation. If I list, the name of many of those songs you wouldn’t remember anything but the title like an earworm. The art of a memorable hook is what sets apart the perfumers of the past who have passed the test of time. If I list those esteemed artists, they also all had very distinct olfactory hooks within their perfumes. The great Paul Vacher was no different as the new Le Galion Sang Bleu confirms.
When Nicolas Chabot oversaw the resurrection of the perfume brand Paul Vacher built he also found some recipes which had not been produced; Sang Bleu is one of those. M. Vacher was working on this in the 1970’s while also working on Eau Noble. Eau Noble was mix of citrus floral and leather in a very refined cologne architecture; as such it was contrary to prevailing trends. Sang Bleu was M. Vacher setting sail with the prevailing trend winds filling the sails of this Le Galion as Sang Bleu is a powerhouse chypre. As you can see in the ad campaign for this release M. Chabot enthusiastically embraces Sang Bleu as a perfume of the era it was created in. M. Vacher forms an intricate line dance of many notes into something great.
Sang Bleu opens with that herbal citrus mixture so common in those 70’s powerhouses. All of the usual suspects are present; lemon, orange, rosemary, and tarragon. M Vacher ups the ante with a fascinating push-and-pull of eucalyptus and artemesia. These two whirl on that dance floor provided by the citrus and herbs. The floral heart is primarily geranium and violet. To keep it from getting too feminine M. Vacher throws in a fistful of clove and galbanum. This turns everything a satisfying shade of green to set up the chypre finish. That comes courtesy of sandalwood, patchouli, cedar, and vetiver. I am fairly certain the original recipe had real oakmoss as an ingredient but the vetiver and cedar make an adequate substitute.
Sang Bleu has 14-16 hour longevity and above average sillage.
One of the nice things about M. Chabot’s bringing Le Galion back is we get to experience M. Vacher’s portfolio all together. When doing that you see what an accomplished perfumer he was. Sang Bleu was one of the last recipes he would write down prior to his death. It is very fitting way to remember his style with a chypre powerhouse last dance.
Disclosure: This review was based on a sample provided by Le Galion