A proper carnival is full of light, noise, laughter, activity- and, ideally, that exhilarating sense of chaos that makes the world feel topsy-turvy and just the right amount of dangerous. Inspired by the funfairs of Serge Lutens’ youth, Bapteme du Feu is a stroll through a gleefully disorienting boardwalk featuring the wonderfully discordant notes of sweet delights, animalic musk and the acerbic gunpowder of the carnival shooting range. As in previous Lutens creations, his favorite childhood treat of gingerbread plays a central role, but unlike the soft creaminess of Five O’Clock au Gingembre, the sweet ginger here is offset with the bitterness of burnt orange peel and galvanized with the striking, metallic tang of gunpowder. We suppose you could call it an avant-garde gourmand, but that somehow doesn’t seem to encompass it fully. Perhaps the best we can say is that it is, as all of Serge Lutens’ best works are, a portal into the unique world and vision of one of perfumery’s truly independent voices.