The Cobra & The Canary (2012)

The Cobra & The Canary by Imaginary Authors
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The Cobra & The Canary is a perfume by Imaginary Authors for women and men and was released in 2012. The scent is smoky-leathery. The longevity is above-average. It is still in production.

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Josh Meyer

Fragrance Notes

Asphalt, Hay, Iris, Leather, Tobacco blossom, Lemon



7.4 (55 Ratings)


8.0 (44 Ratings)


7.1 (43 Ratings)


6.6 (44 Ratings)
Submitted by Franfan20, last update on 01.09.2019.
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Greatly helpful Review    16
In the tar pit
I can't remember how I came up with the idea of crossing this soulless wasteland alone, but it doesn't matter anymore. I'm lying in quicksand up to my chest. Damn, I must have been inattentive drinking earlier when I slipped into that muddy funnel. Maybe it's more of a mixture of moor and quicksand, no matter how much I move, I'd only be drawn deeper into it now. My gaze is fixed on the barren, withered soil, at the height of the turf, only that from the scorching heat the grass here has long since degenerated into hay. The heat is flickering all the time. I lie with my face pressed on one side into my drinking bottle, in the corner of my mouth my cigar is still glowing, which I had fortunately not taken out of my mouth to drink. Someone once told me that in such hopeless situations one gets a sharpened sensory perception.
I smell smoky tar. Probably this is a tar pit after all. The smell mixes with the old snake leather of my drinking bottle, the bitter-sweet smoke of my cigar, the scorched hay. Even though at first I found this smell strange in the first panic of my mishap because of its bulky, dark, brittle and dry character, I begin to like it more and more with increasing duration from minute to minute. After about an hour the cigar is extinguished, the damp leather seems almost balsamic-creamy, the tar more and more resinous and woody. The initially black scent has turned dark brown and light brown hours later, but in all its resinous creaminess it is still coarse-grained and dry.
When finally countless hours later the scorching sun on the horizon disappears, the shimmering heat goes, the smell also decreases in intensity, but it stays with me the whole night, until I have the feeling to have accepted the scent itself, only perceive it when I draw my attention to it, then it is there. Or maybe he's not anymore, like me.
15 Replies

21 Reviews
Helpful Review    4
Countryside Summer
One thing I'll give The Cobra and the Canary credit for is that when you smell it, you'll be able to detect most of the notes listed in its pyramid immediately. A very clear hay note and leather note sit right up front. Leather is one note I usually have trouble identifying, but I find the leather in this very true-to-life. it's not the leather of an expensive, designer jacket or pair of shoes, but something a little more rugged and worn. Next to it sits the hay, dry and aromatic, summer in a barn. Keeping in tune with the hay note, comes the tobacco--also dry, leafy, and fresh--the tobacco of unsmoked cigars and plantations, not pipes. These 3 notes work well together, and while they don't necessarily offer contrast or interplay, they create a certain warm, pastoral atmosphere that's comfortable and without disturbance. There's also a mineralic edge to the entire composition, which suits it fine, and stays in line with the drier, natural quality of the fragrance.

I smell The Cobra and the Canary and I envision a barn in the summer, on a farm where tobacco's grown, with maybe some mountains in the background, or a stream passing through (this accounts for the leather, hay, tobacco and minerals). Reading about it, I see the perfumer envisioned a young man driving a Shelby Cobra (the leather and mineral...asphalt) smoking a cigarette, after picking up his friend from the family farm (the hay). Either story fits, and what you imagine when you smell this could be something entirely different. But you will pick up on the 4 main notes listed in the pyramid. They're distinct and presented well, if not a little obviously.

I enjoyed this one and found it a pleasant, easy-going wear. Imaginary Authors succeeded in creating a very relaxed, personable fragrance. I'd have no problem throwing it on and heading out the door for an evening with friends. Thumbs up.

P.S. For a darker, more challenging take on hay and tobacco, you may want to look toward Sova by Slumberhouse. And for a more complex, chic, and modern take on hay and leather, there's Cuir Pleine Fleur by James Heeley. All 3 are great options and it will really come down to what you're looking for at the moment.
5.0 7.5 6.0/10

223 Reviews
Helpful Review    7
Sexy on the right person ...
I've entertained the idea of ordering samples from this house for some time so eventually I just took the plunge and did so. I've been away for work so I was gratified by their arrival upon my return! The extremely creative concept of Imaginary Authors rather tickles my fancy ... altho' I'm not going to allude to understanding it :).

I am Ophidiophobic (fear of snakes) so I thought I'd get this one out of the way first, pretty sure that I'd never wear anything with 'cobra' in the name. The title of this perfume does inspire a certain 'movie' to play in one's head, but I can't even look at pictures of these reptiles so I am firmly blocking that! Anyway ... The Cobra & The Canary has nothing to do with serpents, but it does have a lot to do with Leather and Tar ... and quite a bit of smoke!
The back story of this fragrance is actually about two young men going on a joyride in a Shelby Cobra, which being the petrol head I am (yes,yes, now you all know two things about me never revealed before lol) seems quite intriguing! It's a fabulous car I wouldn't mind taking a crack at joyriding in myself!
There is a definite 'smokiness' in the opening of this juice ... very much like tires burning tar ... but from a distance. It's nice ... a little bit thrilling! My skin also throws out lots of leather ... like well used driving gloves stained with the tobacco smell of unfiltered Lucky Strikes. All in all quite macho, so while I don't think I'd ever carry this off successfully, perhaps the hot dude in the passenger seat could! There is something homo-erotic about two young men going for a jaunt in a fast sports car ... or is that just me reading too deeply into things? I suppose this frag does have a James Dean-esque idea about it.
Once all the 'Asphalt' burns off, this fragrance actually becomes quite a comfortable wear. The combination of Hay and slightly cosmetic Iris along with the Tobacco and Leather is quite smooth ... the only pity is that by that time, the sillage is quite close and I would have wanted this phase to have more projection.

I cannot say that this first foray into Imaginary Authors has left me unimpressed ... on the right person The Cobra & The Canary would be fantastic, even downright sexy!!
2 Replies
2.5 10.0 5.0/10

130 Reviews
Helpful Review    2
Old-School Fahrenheit
Goes on smoky, but the smoke has a little bit of the choking quality to it that I recognize as benzoin. A creamy underside shows up soon afterwards. At about an hour and half the smokiness has dissipated and the creaminess has tamed the benzoin, leading to a warm, but weighty, comforting scent with very faint citrus, like you were smelling a giant fluffy cushion. It waxes elegant, and by three hours in, the feel is one of relaxed opulence – benzoin and maybe a little musk with some sort of citrus. It’s blended quite well. The projection is now down to a skin scent, though. Hour five the scent reveals the usual vanilla base, followed by a weird interlude of Scotchguard/cream/aridity. By eight hours, it’s a slightly creamy vanilla, and it stays there for the remainder (11 hours at least), surviving even light workouts.

The Cobra and the Canary is a curious fragrance, one that tells a story of another life lived in stages, like Memoirs of a Trespasser. We begin as a youthful racecar driver who stumbles into some kind of fortune, and then adds the allure of high culture to his brash charisma. It's Fahrenheit-esque, but a Fahrenheit of an earlier time.

Overall, I found the scent interesting and well-blended, but it didn't connect; that feeling -- of a near miss -- is what I get from other fragrances of this house as well. It's like I was almost kissed.

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