Men's Biz is thrilled to welcome FZOTIC to its family of fragrances. We've curated perfumes for over a decade, observing many trends arrive on the scene and leave them just as quickly. Equally, we've seen fragrances take flight and soar.
In this article, we look into what makes an Independent 'indie' brand. We first turn to Tauer Perfumes before we explore the newest additions from FZOTIC.
Case Study: Tauer Perfumes
In 2016 we launched Tauer Perfumes, pouring our impassioned hearts into the brand and introducing it to the Australian market for the first time. L'Air du Desert Marocain proved its brilliance by winning the tastes of our discerning clients, beguiling with its clever accord of coriander seed, cedar wood, and ambery base notes.
It was perhaps the soulful character of the brand - or the character behind the brand – that won people over. Our clients experienced perfumes singularly crafted by a Swiss chemist turned perfumer. This is a man who hiked and painted in his spare time, told tales of the creative processes and logistics of perfumery, and included a signed card with every one of his full-sized perfumes. The warm presence of the marvellous Andreas 'Andy' Tauer felt in his fragrances provided a point of connection for enthusiasts, bringing a friendly and approachable human face to the artistic world of perfumery.
Indeed, the works are full of life and character. Smelling the range of Andy's work is like developing a friendship, coming to know another through their style and mannerisms. His fragrances have his mark, and the Tauerade accord is the olfactory equivalent of a handwriting, specifying Andy's penchant for extracting the sweet yet dry qualties from incense, ambergris, resins, and cedar, mixing this with quality citrus notes to produce a charismatic effervescent effect. This shifts across many iterations, from the intense rose-patchouli fizz of Incense Rose, and the bursting citric brightness of Orange Star, whilst it spices and charges the arid earth in the leathery Lonestar Memories.
Characterising Indie Perfumery
Independent perfumery is idiosyncratic, and sometimes we wonder whether 'autonomous' perfumery is a more accurate label for this movement. But even niche brands like Frederic Malle or Essential Parfums offer their perfumers creative freedom - so, what defines 'indie' perfumery?
Our suggestion is closer to a characterisation, because there is no settled definition! Indie perfumery gains its meaning depending on the relationship the perfumer (nose) has with their own brand and output. The perfumers are often the ones measuring, compounding, diluting, and bottling the perfumes destined for the market. In other words, they are their own creative director. They arbiter their tastes and extend it to the world. It's not about mass appeal - but appealing to those who happen to share the tastes and visions of the perfumer. Perfumes are more meaningful in this regard, and as Bruno Fazzolari of FZOTIC says:
"FZOTIC favors the bold. My fragrances aren't for everyone, but since you aren't everyone, they might fit you just right."
You learn more about the perfumer through the stories they tell in and with scent. A perfume brand becomes a platform for creativity and expressivity in general. And with brands like FZOTIC and Tauer, you'll find blogs and lively Instagram pages detailing the perfumer's olfactory life, as memories and associations fill the stories they tell. They are always insightful. Little wonder that Men's Biz's independant brands: Tauer, Heeley, and now Fzotic, make use of the perfumer's name in their titles.
We warmly welcome the FZOTIC brand to the Men's Biz range, with a snapshot of 6 perfumes and 4 hand and body soaps.
Turning our attention to FZOTIC. Pronounced ‘fah-zo-tic’, or ‘fah-ZA-tic’ with an American twang, FZOTIC is true ‘indie’ and self-taught perfumery, dedicated to infusing artistry into everyday life.
A relatively young brand, as Bruno Fazzolari’s scents spoke to increasingly more people, this hobby took on a dominant life of its own. Leaning into his ability to ‘see’ the colours of a smell (synaesthesia), his initial fragrances were first wedded to his paintings on display in galleries, meant to scent the atmosphere and enrich aesthetic reception, prolonging the experience like the stain of an afterimage.
His works are idiosyncratic and universal all at once, created in good and interesting taste and fuelled by his own personal passion for perfumery. Richly informed by the visual realm and its techniques, Bruno embraces the spontaneous impact of colour, who works at the materials of perfumery with an adept hand to create scents that are striking yet assume measured form and proportion. Bruno has an eye and nose for density and texture, applying his material with various brushstrokes, so that they mark, dash, melt, layer, and take shape on the olfactory canvas.
Lampblack is a cornerstone of the FZOTIC brand, and is a marvellous olfactory study of infite black, managing to remain lucent at all stages of its development. It is inspired by the scent of dark pigment used to make India Ink - a soot which lends Lampblack its name. This perfume was created to complement an exhibition of ink drawings made with this material. Its aroma ranges from vegetal, mineral, saline, and smoky - it is true to its source material. It is a shiny and wet black with a reflective surface, preserving a lustre as it dries. Lampblack utilises the roots of vetiver and cypriol to create a dry effect, seasoned with black pepper and lightened with sweet orange and grapefruit. Reassuring and health-giving, it cannot be missed and is deservedly praised.
Feu Secret shares a similiar stylistic feel as Lampblack, which utilises orris (the dried rhizome of the iris flower) and turmeric root for its unique character. Iris fascinates universally, paradoxically growing in intensity as it dries. Alone, it is buttery, earthy, and unmistakable. Bruno takes this ingredient and uses it to soften a flame made of spruce woods, eucalyptus leaves, pine needles, cedar, and birch. The result is a smokeless burn, wrapped up in a velvety and gentle creaminess. Its trail has a distinctive shape that lingers in the air, and it is marvellous.
Sultry and intoxicating, almost narcotic, Ummagumma is an adult gourmand, full of creamy vanilla, sandalwood, and buttery chocolate, balanced by the comfort of smooth tobacco and resinous incense. The fragrance celebrates sophisticated sensuality and is loaded with genuine tonka bean absolute. It is an amazing contrast that draws out colour in some of the darkest ingredients in perfumery, celebrating at once the power and delicacy of labdanum - rolled in dusty cocoa like an exquisite chocolate truffle.
Hand & Body Soaps: Honey Cedar & Toasted Lilac
Fzotic’s clay soaps are artisanal and exceptional, offering outstanding skincare and gorgeous fragrance. They are generous and enriched with olive oil and shea butter. Even quoditian objects (like bars of soap) are touched by the inspired artist, who brings colour and joy to everyday processes.
Honey Cedar is a dream of clean cedar against the textures of tobacco and honey, scenting the skin with this delirious blend. Toasted Lilac has a nostalgic and soft quality at its core, a pastel tone where blooming lilacs exude a sweet and creamy floral smell. This is emphasised with an unexpected note of toast, which adds a soft and comforting warmth to the fragrance.
We love Bruno's words: 'be colourful!'. We invite you to explore this wonderful collection of scented creations - attending to them like you would a trusted friend who has many stories to tell.