In my previous article, where I detailed every discreet thing going on with patten’s minisites that they create for each release, I mentioned that the codes written on the physical release of their new album, Psi, didn’t lead anywhere at the time. The first code (PHTHALO) didn’t even lead to a patten minisite, while the second code (RADICARIAN) led to one that had nothing but a black background and black text displaying the code in full. Well, at some point since writing that article (I’m assuming in late October personally), Radicarian’s minisite has been updated with content. What does it look like? Well, it looks a little something like this:
Unfortunately my screen is a little too small to be able to take full screenshots of the various ASCII images on there, so I recommend you visit it yourself. Now then, note that on each “image”, there is a specific spot on it, left empty against the background. Each of these little areas links to yet another minisite, and each of them contain their own separate bits of content. But before we look at those, it’s probably for the best that we check everything there is to be found on this main hub area of sorts.
Starting off, we have the ever classic ASCII art, so let’s go ahead and get all of that stuff out of the way:
Let’s see here, we have two people kissing, some clouds with a weird semi circle at the bottom (a mistake, perhaps?), a tilted OmYang:) with two circles in opposite corners, the old iTunes logo, three sea waves stacked on top of one another and finally the Warp Records logo. Hm, ok then.
What about those goo.gl link that’s under the image of the two people kissing? Well, that links to this image here:
Now this image is that of Plutchik’s Wheel of Emotions. Wikipedia tells us that the wheel visualises “eight basic emotions, plus eight derivative emotions each composed of two basic ones.” It’s basically one of many ways that people have tried to categorize or contrast the various human emotions.
Finally, we have this wonderfully cryptic message/poem gently sitting amongst the art:
Ink is a lock
How’d you see now?”
Link #1 – 30 minutes rain
You wouldn’t even think that this page had anything else other than the embedded YouTube video on it, unless you typed “view-source:” in front of the URL. Anyway, Let’s start with the elephant in the room.
30 minutes rain is a 30 minute long video containing a continually distorted image of D & A (aka the “faces” of patten) and an audio recording of a rain storm. Eagle-eared listeners may note that the rain recording used in this video is the very one used at the beginning of the song “Epsilon”. Almost as if they had heard my calls in my last article, this video does indeed have something at the very end of it. But we’ll come back to that later as we still have a bunch of stuff to go through in the source code.
Hitting us right in the face as soon as we get into it is a lovely image of The Mona Lisa. After that we have an image of someone using a simple mobile phone (think of a 3210), a picture of a rain cloud (how fitting), a graffiti style image reading “ABCDE” and finally a picture of an eye, which brings thoughts of the reality TV series Big Brother.
Alongside those images, we also have two cryptic messages. First there’s the one at the end, reading simply “D__M_ND D_ST”. I assume one has to fill in the blanks but I couldn’t possibly imagine what it could be, nor what it’d even lead to after one has solved it. As well as that, we have “une chose à la fin”.
“Une chose à la fin” is French for “One thing at the end”. What does that mean? Well, remember how I said 30 minutes rain has something at the end of it? Turns out, around 29 minutes or so in, a URL flashes up on screen, reading “patttten.com/DiamondDust”. I’ll be honest, I had to receive some guidance from patten on Twitter before finding this one, and I’m kind of kicking myself for not realizing it sooner because it’s incredibly obvious now that I look back on it. Regardless, let us go there now.
Link #2 – DiamondDust aka “IC”
The main thing that’ll hit you as soon as you access this site is the embedded widget showing off a rather nicely made 3D model bust of D & A in the style of the “Dialler” video, as well as a soda cup that has been spilled open gently clipping through D’s head. I wont embed it here for the sake of not killing your computer, but if you wanna view it, go ahead and click the link above.
Jumping into the source code, we have just two bits of ASCII art this time:
First we have a very strange looking, possibly distorted image of either Bart or Lisa Simpson (most likely Lisa as an edited image of her likeness is used on an official bit of patten merch) as well as a single sea wave that we saw previously in Link #0. Not much else. We do have four links to look at though.
The first link is to an article on a German site called “hhv mag”, detailing patten’s top 10 all time favourite albums. Something of note is that this article mentions the secret codes, specifically MAYLIS OPAL EMDASH, the minisite consisting of the fast moving gif deconstruction of ESTOILE NAIANT’s cover art and excerpts from Jorge Lois Borges.
The second link sends us to a website called “WTF Art History”, specifically to their article on “Enigmatic Mirrors”, whatever those are.
The third link is to this image here:
One can only assume this is nothing but specks of dust floating in front of a light.
Finally, we have one last link, which is to this image:
Reverse image searching this brings up an article by the Daily Mail, which explains that it is an image of a “fog bow”, a rare phenomena similar to that of rainbows, that appears in fog rather than in rain, thus giving the arch a completely white look. All very interesting things, overall. Moving on, we have the second link from the main hub to look at.
Link #3 – PSLNRPRS aka Epsilon Reprise
Well this is certainly a surprise.
Blimey. What can you even say? Well, for one thing, this is definitely a way cooler bonus than the previous slowed down versions of their songs as we’ve heard and seen in the other codes. The video is very nice too, providing some alternate camera angles and close-ups of the gorgeous models used in it. Included in the description of the video is even a link to download it, intriguingly titled “jp-bonus”, which makes me think it was a Japan-only bonus track. However, upon looking at various Japanese music sites such as HMV, Amazon and Ototoy, it appears that isn’t the case. Either that, or it WAS a Japanese bonus track, but it was obtained through other means such as a code included with the copy.
A simple ASCII version of the scheduling icon from Windows(?) is all we get in this link, along with 3 links and one quote. The first link is to the Wikipedia article for “Dream”, the second link is a Fred Perry interview with patten as well as a Spotify playlist of 7 songs (with one missing due to it not being on Spotify), all of which were given as a response to various questions such as “What’s a song you wish you had written?”. Finally, the last link is to a Wikipedia article on “Axial tilt”, which may be connected with the quote in this page:
”a mote of dust, suspended in a sunbeam”
This quote is taken from Carl Sagan’s reflections on the “Pale Blue Dot” image, which was a photo taken in 1990 by Voyager 1, at about 3.7 billion miles away from Earth.
Link #4 – 555-555 @ Bleepstores
It’s literally just a link to their Merchandise store. Nothing more, nothing less. Little bit confused by this, if I’m honest, unless patten are trying to sway me into finally buying the L_SA t-shirt, the design of which is actually what makes up this link.
Link #5 – 8D141016
This video is a simple 42 second long clip of what is presumed to be a patten live show. I’m not able to identify the song personally. The video starts by looking at the stage, before panning over to the crowd, who is mostly motionless, and then panning back over to the stage, dipping down a little bit and then ending. As for the title, I’d assume 141016 is the date that the video was taken, but I have no clue as to what 8D means; D is one of the known members of patten, but what relevance the 8 has is unknown. Both of these things are rather odd and cryptic, if I’m honest.
Three bits of ASCII this time:
The symbol for Om/Aum, another rain cloud and another eye. Om/Aum is notable for it being the base of patten’s OmYang:), which is currently the symbol they’re applying to almost anything they’re doing as of recent.
Four links this time: Link 1 is to a StackExchange Biology question, posing “Is it easy to test human Flicker Fusion Threshold?”. The second link sends us to an article on a website called PsyPost, entitled “Scientists discover how to use flickers to induce visual hallucinations”. 3rd link takes us directly to patten’s website, specifically to the live show section. And link number 4 gives us a picture:
This is Salvadore Dali’s “Living Still Life”. To say the least, I’m a little intrigued to see if all of this is teasing for something incredible they’re going to be doing in their upcoming shows or not, but at the same time I’m a little bit frightened from it all.
And that’s it. That is all they have for us today. A 3D model, a bonus track and a live show clip. Also potential foreshadowing for some weird freaky stuff they’re going to be doing in their live shows. Because why not.
As a footnote, I’d like to remark on the other code. So far, PHTHALO has continued to be a dead end, from the point where I first checked it to the time of me writing this. Because of how long it’s time for RADICARIAN to even be updated with content, I asked patten on Twitter on if it’s just a red herring or not. They replied thus:
— patten (@patttten) November 2, 2016
A clock, or rather, time. So, I guess I’ll see you for part 3 of this whenever they update PHTHALO.
EDIT: PHTHALO UPDATED: PART 3 HERE