Very helpful Review
Same old 'same old' ... but lovely nonetheless!
I confess to being a bit of an Oud addict :). This addiction was in no small way aided and abetted by House Montale, being that the first time I came in contact with Oud was via some of their perfumes. Unfortunately, the Oud explosion of the past few years has taken this note from relative unattainability to commonplace, rendering the search for 'really good' Oud fragrances an ongoing passion.
In my fascination with Oud as a note, I have come to the realisation that I cannot abide it unadorned. The medicinal, 'un-mucked-out-stable' effect it sometimes presents my nose with is quite intolerable, so my Oud MUST be softened with florals (predominantly Rose) and sweet-ish resins and incenses. The problem is that Rose/Oud combinations invariably end up smelling similar ... as is the case with Montale's Louban.
I have definitely smelled this fragrance before ... in other creations by the same house, in fragrances by Nejma, Killian, Arabian Oud, Al Haramain and Ajmal ... to name but a few. Each carry their own slight distinctiveness, but the underlying Oud and Roses in those I have tried (and own LOL) is dizzyingly similar.
In Louban's defense, the addition of Violet Leaf is the saving grace here, bringing a lovely green freshness to the composition. This 'green-ness' is comfortably enveloped by the richer ingredients, as if the Violet Leaf being too chilly needed a wrap of Frankincense, Patchouli and Sandalwood to keep it warm.
This is a really lovely fragrance and presented with the opportunity I would probably add Louban to my collection ... whether I would wear it very often remains to be seen :) ...