When Les Fleurs du mal (“The Flowers of Evil”) was first published in 1857, it led to the prosecution of its author Charles Baudelaire and his publisher for “an insult to public decency”, the imposition of fines, and the removal of poems from the volume’s remarkable collection of verse. The attempted suppression did not work, of course. The volume to this day is recognized as a work of unsettling genius, with Baudelaire praised by no less a figure than TS Eliot as “the greatest exemplar in modern poetry in any language”.
Les Fleurs du mal is also the name of the new second album by While They Sleep, a one-man black metal band from Crimea in Ukraine, which will be jointly released by Symbol of Domination and More Hate Productions on March 29. And that album is the source of the song we’re premiering today: “The Perfume“.