Jeke by Slumberhouse

Year: 2008

Notes: lapsang souchong, clove, tobacco, patchouli, labdanum, benzoin, cade

Comment: Eau de Parfum review
Many of this house's creations revolve around resins, balsams, dried fruits, spices, tobacco and leather, with a molasses sweetness, a la Serge Lutens (Josh Lobb is a self-confessed worshipper of Christopher Sheldrake). Jeke is another example of what's considered to be Slumberhouse's signature style.

Apparently, it "evokes autumn twilight with masculine fragrance of burning wood" but one is unable to identify with such a description. Instead, it's more reminiscent of a sweeter and denser version of Black Tourmaline by Olivier Durbano, but with tobacco and clove replacing the frankincense. Granted, it's spicy and leathery, with a prominent burnt caramel note, but there's nothing particularly complex or endearing about it.

And that's the problem with Jeke – it smells clumsy and unfinished, with no indication that it was developed or blended properly. Overall, it smells like a hodgepodge of essential oils and absolutes thrown together, with very little foresight. The tobacco is unable to really shine, the patchouli comes across as stifled and the sweetness overpowers any smokiness detectable. There are no nuances, layers or evidence of any genuine development – just one sweet woody mess.

As for longevity and projection, there's too much hyperbole surrounding the general performance of this house's fragrances, which one considers to be utter poppycock. The thing is, most of them range from average to good, in the longevity department, often with very little sillage and Jeke is no exception.

With that said, it could have been much worse, hence not being rated any lower.

Year: 2013

Notes: tobacco, patchouli, labdanum, benzoin, cade

Comment: Parfum extrait review
In comparison to the Eau de Parfum, the extrait is markedly smokier and drier. One also finds that the cade is given more opportunity to breathe, with any sweetness and spiciness drastically reduced. It's also structurally sparser than its predecessor but it hardly projects – one has to sniff extremely close to the application point, to detect anything at all.

While the parfum extrait smells more balanced, the Eau de Parfum is richer and stronger. Those who found the Eau de Parfum too sweet and cloying may derive some satisfaction from this whimsical pseudo-extrait, but one found it lacking in substance.

With regards to the Slumberhouse releases, in general, one gets the distinct impression that Josh is basically throwing his underdeveloped maverick ideas against the wall and seeing what sticks.

Disclaimer: Since some Slumberhouse releases are always being 'improved', and with various formulations of the same fragrance in existence, this review is based on the sample(s) received. Due to the lack of information about these reformulations, one is unable to confirm the actual formulation(s) that has/have been reviewed. As a result, your experience of this fragrance may greatly differ. Understandably, it's all very confusing.