Launched in 1999 by Tom Ford, then at the height of his success as the mastermind of Gucci’s renaissance, Rush owes as little to nature as a polyester disco dress draped over a pair of silicone-enhanced breasts. And that’s the charm of it: Rush is ostentatiously artificial, good-natured and a little cheap, a perfectly balanced product of the more is more, tongue-in-cheek Fordian aesthetics.
Mostly, Rush is about the skillful overdose of three materials: C-12 aldehydes (the ones that smell like metal heated by an electric coil), decalactone (the peach smell of Mitsouko), and jasmolactone (a jasmine reduced to its smallest denominator, then blown up a thousand times). The notes given by Osmoz (gardenia, freesia, jasmine, rose, coriander, vanilla, patchouli and vetiver) collapse under the onslaught of these synthetic molecules: a hint of rose, vanilla to fill out the peach lactone, and a patchouli base eventually emerge.
The effect doesn’t evolve much over time: it is as flat as the red plastic bottle that holds it. But it sizzles with a bluish glow, like neon strips on lacquered peach walls, or seen through a glass of a sparkling Bellini cocktail. According to Chandler Burr of the New York Times, it is the exact smell of a hairdressing salon; Luca Turin compares it to an alien with warm blood.
Despite its provocative name, Rush doesn’t take itself seriously. But this perfectly post-modern artifact is a contemporary classic, because it succeeds according to its own terms: synthetic materials, displayed as such.
Image: Empress of India 2 by Bertrand Lavier (2005)
Okay, that's it -- I will love you forever. Any fan of Rush is a friend of mine!!! Rush is a fragrance with a massive sense of humor (although I wouldn't wear it to dinner) and I'm always happy to read an appreciative review. It's a fragrance that helps me remember that perfume can be about nothing more than fun.RépondreSupprimer
March, did you ever doubt we were perfume soul-mates? That's what I like about Rush: it doesn't take itself seriously. I did wear it to dinner though: an artsy dinner in a little Italian restaurant in the happening neighbourhood of Paris (so far up north I get a nosebleed), to offset a 1930s black satin dress. It worked!RépondreSupprimer
Great review of an intoxicating fragrance that I just had to buy for my gf at the outset of our relationship. Thankfully, it's one of a handful of perfumes she too was blown away by. Actually, it was love at first sniff for both of us via a scented mag strip way back in '99 :)RépondreSupprimer
Sexually enticing and inviting, Rush is for badass bitches with good attitudes!RépondreSupprimer
Dusan, I'm glad your girlfriend and you agree on at least *some* fragrances... Does she still wear it?RépondreSupprimer
Intoxicating is the word...
Emmanuella, I wonder what it is about Rush that makes it sexual... But it definitely is. Tom Ford really knows how to work that vibe, and never better than during his Gucci tenure.RépondreSupprimer
carmencanada, after all Rush is directly inspired by poppers, those nitrite inhalants used in the gay & bisexual community but also by metrosexual men like Tom Ford (well translate "metrosexual" as closeted homosexual)...not that Rush would cause anyone to experience sexual asphyxiation but is there some secret synthetic stuff in the formula?RépondreSupprimer
Emmanuella, one wonders... I've never tried poppers (guess I didn't hang around Le Palace quite enough in the 80s), so I can't compare it to the fragrance's effect, but there's that in-your-face aldehyde burst that feels somewhat overheated...RépondreSupprimer
the parallel with poppers - and thereby the sexual parallel - is very straightforward, as Rush indeed is a brand of poppers. The nitrites in itselves smell good, but probably the kinds on the marked for use in sexual situations also have other aromatics added, for an even more pleasant smell? Perhaps some of these also may be found in Tom Ford's Rush?RépondreSupprimer
A very enlightening comment! Clearly there's something lacking in my culture... something I suppose I won't be catching up on, ever! I'd be curious to know if there was an actual olfactory inspiration, which would be delightfully perverse.RépondreSupprimer
Oh, that's so interesting! I popped (heh) back over here and read the thing about poppers, I had no idea, having never been in that scene. I wonder if I asked on the Posse whether anyone would answer me?RépondreSupprimer
March, who knows? I never even began to imagine poppers could be aromatized (think of the perfumer working on *that*). I say, go ahead and ask.RépondreSupprimer
I'm going to ask. btw in the Dianne Brill fragrance review by Chandler Burr (see Patty's review yesterday for the link) there's a reference to the smell of poppers. She was an 80s club queen, so it would make sense... all news to me!RépondreSupprimer
If cocaine took over poppers in gay clubs and fashion circles during the '80s for its more chic glamour image, poppers are still used by "non-club scene" gay men, masculine "straight-acting" gay/bisexual men, leather guys etc, probably in conjonction with other substances such as Meth which makes users feel hypersexual and uninhibited.RépondreSupprimer
March, I read Chandler's review but it didn't register (duh). I guess he might know... Keep me updated!RépondreSupprimer
Emmanuella, the chic part is the part I caught way back when... ;-)RépondreSupprimer