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Name: The Carousel

Manufacturer:  Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab – Neil Gaiman’s American Gods III

Scent Description and Notes: Calliope music played: a Strauss waltz, stirring and occasionally discordant. The wall as they entered was hung with antique carousel horses, hundreds of them, some in need of a lick of paint, others in need of a good dusting; above them hung dozens of winged angels constructed rather obviously from female store-window mannequins; some of them bared their sexless breasts; some had lost their wigs and stared baldly and blindly down from the darkness.

And then there was the carousel.

A sign proclaimed it was the largest in the world, said how much it weighed, how many thousand lightbulbs were to be found in the chandeliers that hung from it in Gothic profusion, and forbade anyone from climbing on it or from riding on the animals.

And such animals! Shadow stared, impressed in spite of himself, at the hundreds of full-sized creatures who circled on the platform of the carousel. Real creatures, imaginary creatures, and transformations of the two: each creature was different. He saw mermaid and merman, centaur and unicorn, elephants (one huge, one tiny), bulldog, frog and phoenix, zebra, tiger, manticore and basilisk, swans pulling a carriage, a white ox, a fox, twin walruses, even a sea serpent, all of them brightly colored and more than real: each rode the platform as the waltz came to an end and a new waltz began. The carousel did not even slow down.

“What’s it for?” asked Shadow. “I mean, okay, world’s biggest, hundreds of animals, thousands of lightbulbs, and it goes around all the time, and no one ever rides it.”

“It’s not there to be ridden, not by people,” said Wednesday. “It’s there to be admired. It’s there to be.”

A place of power and possibility, of gods diabolical and celestial: glowing amber and heady cinnamon, the green of growing things and the white of thunderclaps, sweet myrrh and sacred styrax, forest moss and blood-soaked battlefields, papyrus and clay, rose petals, wildflowers, abbatoirs, and honey. -https://blackphoenixalchemylab.com/shop/neil-gaiman/american-gods/american-gods-2/the-carousel/

Oil Color: A peachy colored oil.

Bottle Design and Artwork:  This is the lab’s brown apothecary bottle.  The label wrapped around the bottle features the name of the company in black bold font along the bottom.  The name of the scent is above that in larger font, outlined in red.  The image art is as follows:


  • ITB:  I’m getting wildflowers and moss under thundering skies laced with styrax and a clang of metal, papyrus and clay.  It’s hard to pin down as the notes shift beneath me so quickly.  I’m intrigued.
  • Wet: This paints such a vivid sensory picture for me in a delightful whirl of complexity.  I smell ancient deeds written atop papyrus illuminated with images of  electric wildflowers, rolling rose petals, brush strokes of styrax, and sweetening honeyed gore under sun-setting amber rays.
  • Dry: This scent is just gorgeous.  It continues to shift in these beautiful, almost sensuous ways throughout the day.  It’s a journey of evolving stories and I have been finding myself eager to repeatedly mark its progress.  After 11 hours, the scent still has about 2″ of throw and retains a beautiful clarity of honeyed, resinous delights sprinkled with rose petals, a dash of cinnamon, the charge of thunder, and a whisper of blood-tinged metal from battles long past.  Lovely.  A bottle might not be enough.

Other Impressions: “Orange-y and fresh.  I like it.” -Tony (30 minutes after application.

“It smells like sugar cookies and like how a Dad smells.” -Tony (on The Carousel dry 11 hours)