Burberry just released Burberry Brit Rhythm for (young) men; it’s a flanker to Brit for Men (2004) and marks the beginning of Burberry’s in-house perfume development (adieu InterParfums). Though InterParfums is gone, silliness remains: Brit Rhythm was “inspired by the music in the brand’s DNA” — huh? what’s so musical about a trench coat? (I own a Burberry trench and have probably done some singing while wearing it…though I don’t think I was inspired by my coat to burst into song.) Burberry also produced an unmusical Brit Rhythm video that looks more like a lead-up to a fashion show than a rock concert. Do young guys still aspire, by the millions, to rock-singer status? You’d think so judging by mainstream perfume advertising.
It took three perfumers to come up with Burberry Brit Rhythm: Dominique Ropion, Anne Flipo and Olivier Polge. Brit Rhythm’s listed fragrance notes include basil, verbena, cardamom, juniper berries, black leather, patchouli, styrax, cedar, incense and tonka bean. Sounded promising….
Brit Rhythm does not have a competent opening act; upon application it smells like every generic scent strip you’ll find in GQ or Details: damn bland. I sniff artificial cardamom, flat citrus and something “Fresh” and “Clean.” As the fragrance heads straight to its cold-blooded heart, I detect a split second of “leather.” If ever a leather was not “black” it’s this one! This be pleather or Vynelle™. If you bought a sofa or jacket that smelled like this “leather,” you’d fling open the windows or only wear it outside. Brit Rhythm ends up with some bleached patchouli, engineered "wood" and reject tonka beans (the strongest note and a note apparently beloved by young men). Incense? HAHAHAHAHA!
Burberry never made smashing, or really high-quality men’s fragrances, but as far as I remember they never put out anything as bad as Calvin Klein does on a regular basis for men…until now.
Burberry Brit Rhythm is available in 30 ($49), 50 ($60) and 90 ml ($79) Eau de Toilette. The fragrance is also available in aftershave balm and shower gel.