BEGOTTEN: A Disturbing Online Music Mystery Part II
A Disturbing Online Music Mystery Part II
If you haven’t checked out Part I of this story yet, please make sure you do so before reading this article. For those who are ready to continue, sit tight and get cozy because this is where the story of b e g o t t e n 自杀 really begins to fall off the rails.
In 2017, a series of limited conversations between an unknown music producer and a record label owner would lead to the upload of six disturbing albums, each including their own unique set of tragic poems, blocks of confusing Chinese texts, mysterious music videos and paragraphs that recite the label owner's experience with this unknown music producer, a producer with a worrisome story that seemed to get all the more real as time went by.
The producer in question here is known as b e g o t t e n 自杀, and as you’ve learned in my previous video, their infamous musical work and strange relationship with the label owner of Geometric Lullaby, Dennis, has piqued the minds of thousands to this very day. From the moment b e g o t t e n 自杀’s work went live on Geometric Lullaby’s page, it was easy to see how this artist was going to strike a chord in music goers who crave the stranger side of things. A cryptic story? Check. An unknown origin and inconceivable reasoning behind it all? Check. Good music? Check as well.
b e g o t t e n 自杀’s entire vibe, this blend of uncanniness, romance, horror, and undeniable tragedy all tied in a pretty bow with this low-res and distorted aesthetic is the perfect dose for the dark side of the music world.
In Part I of this series, we dove into b e g o t t e n 自杀’s first two albums and the events that happened between the strange producer and Dennis. To save time, I’m going to assume you’ve already checked out Part I. With that being said, I just want to get right into it all today. There is a lot to unpack with the story of b e g o t t e n 自杀, so I want to waste no time jumping right back into the deep end.
I hope you're ready, because there’s no going back now. Cheers.
[July 23rd, 2018 / GEO - 015]
On the 23rd of July, 2018, Geometric Lullaby would unleash b e g o t t e n 自杀’s third album on the label, (phantom psalms) - 幻影诗篇. Considered by many to be the darkest and lowest point of b e g o t t e n 自杀’s career, (phantom psalms) - 幻影诗篇 spends a majority of its time intoxicating you with these hazy vocals and washy synths, a sound replicating the viscosity of syrup or honey as they slowly pour into your ears like a heavy fog, gradually filling up the space inside your head. (phantom psalms) - 幻影诗篇 is a hypnotizing pendulum, laughing gas for your ears as they become nothing but vulnerable entrances to b e g o t t e n 自杀’s dastardly deeds. If b e g o t t e n 自杀’s previous album (hushwave) - 治愈它 was the light and airy side of the producer, then (phantom psalms) - 幻影诗篇 breaks up the crowd as a heavy, slow moving, hulking counterpart. They are the sounds of a mad person; someone who had gone off the deep end.
“From the onset of the very first track, my heart felt like it had a weight pressing into it. Like sleep paralysis, I was terrified and yet my body completely relaxed. From the choice of chords and textures of the samples down to the lyrics, this album hits me probably most hard of all the b e g o t t e n 自杀 releases.”
Dennis, Owner of Geometric Lullaby
In my previous video, we last left off with Dennis’ trying to figure out what he should do with the mysterious package he received from b e g o t t e n 自杀. The strange envelope sent to him contained a single card that read "You're Invited" in big cursive letters. Below, there looked to be a fingerprint in red ink, or possibly blood. An address in Georgia, USA was also given on the card, and at the bottom was a scratchy b e g o t t e n 自杀 signature.
After some research and digging, he found that the address on the outer envelope was traced to a mental institution in Georgia while the address scribbled on the “You’re Invited” card on the inside of the envelope led him to a small graveyard with several mausoleums in central Georgia.
Dennis didn’t know if they should have the red ink, or what seemed to be blood, tested for DNA. He wondered if he should go to either of the addresses in Georgia. Or, possibly try and find someone to go there for him since he lived in a completely different state. His mind was flooded with questions.
Between the release of (hushwave) - 治愈它 and (phantom psalms) - 幻影诗篇, Dennis never received any further communication from b e g o t t e n 自杀, ultimately causing him to have to personally investigate the item he had gotten in the mail further.
This is what happened.
Dennis was able to eventually get in contact with a good friend who lived in the area of the Georgia addresses given to him, the friend actually took the time to find the address when Dennis reached out and agreed to scope out the place as the friend became just as interested as Dennis was.
When the friend FaceTimed Dennis upon their arrival, Dennis would see that they were in the middle of a beautiful graveyard, stones and trees engulfing the entirety of the background. They informed Dennis that they couldn't find anything that stuck out out of the ordinary, but Dennis asked them to just look a little bit longer since they had already gone through all that trouble to get there. This was Dennis’ first, and possibly last shot, at attempting to see if all of this b e g o t t e n 自杀 chaos was for real or just a hoax, so he knew he had to take advantage of the opportunity.
His friend was alone and the connection wasn't the greatest, but they ended up agreeing with Dennis’ request. As the sun began to set, they walked along each line of headstones and showed Dennis everything they could see. Dennis watched from his office, focusing on everything that was coming his way, all while wishing he could have just made the trip himself.
As time went by, the friend kept telling Dennis that it was just a simple graveyard and whoever was doing this to him was most likely just messing with him, but Dennis didn't want to believe it. He wanted something to happen.
"Just keep going. Walk through the whole thing," Dennis recalls telling his friend. And so he did, with Dennis wishing he had just one more email or anything else at all to help explain the letter and the reasoning behind the odd request for his friend, but he really had nothing to go off of besides what little b e g o t t e n 自杀 provided him with, and most of all, his own personal curiosity.
His friend reached the last row of gravestones and…they found absolutely nothing. But when his friend turned the camera to leave, Dennis spotted something.
"What was that?" Dennis yelled, nearly spilling his drink.
"I don't see anything, I..."
"No, on the road!"
Behind Dennis’ friend, on the only road path that led into the cemetery was an all black car. Dennis swore it hadn't been there before and he knew it definitely wasn't his friend's vehicle.
His friend’s face fell from a joking and light expression to fear. He hadn't noticed that car before either.
"I'm not going anywhere near that!" his friend told him.
Dennis begged his friend to talk to them, maybe knock on the window or at least wave, but his friend refused. The car didn't move and the windows were tinted so dark that it was impossible to see if anyone was inside.
And of course, by luck, the connection started to lose quality and the picture became blurry. The black of the car smudged the screen, mixed with the greens and greys, all painting the screen with its bad connection.
Next, the audio began to cut in and out. Dennis only got one more flash of something distinguishable before it completely disconnected. He couldn't tell if his friend was smiling or screaming. The still frame left him anxious and worried.
Dennis would try calling the friend over the next few days and it seemed that his phone was off or had no connection at all. A week would pass with these attempts by Dennis, which only led to a shocking discovery: the number had suddenly been disconnected completely. Any form of contact with the friend seemed hopeless at this point as Dennis would also discover that his Facebook account was deleted as well. Dennis called the local police station and gave them all the information he had regarding b e g o t t e n 自杀, the emails, the addresses, the situation with his friend, and the odd FaceTime call at the graveyard. Then, not three days later, Dennis would get a call.
It was his friend.
The friend acted as if nothing had happened all, as if they checked out the graveyard and there was nothing there. Dennis asked about their phone, their time away, not calling Dennis back, why they would suddenly delete their Facebook account, but strangely enough, Dennis’ friend would brush it all off as if Dennis was just making it all up in his head. The friend would tell Dennis that they were just busy and that there must have been a problem with their cell phone provider or service at the graveyard. They also claimed that they had just gotten tired of Facebook so they wanted to delete it for a while. A bit too coincidental as you can probably tell.
At this point, Dennis didn't know what to think. He knew the only other place he could get a clue from was from the other address he received: the one for the mental institution. He decided to ask his friend again to see if somehow, possibly, he would be willing to go check out that spot as well for him, but the friend said that he was busy.
Dennis’ friend hasn't contacted him since that follow-up phone call, nor has b e g o t t e n 自杀 as mentioned earlier. Summer of 2018 came and Dennis decided at this point, it was best to just release the next album in the b e g o t t e n 自杀 series, (phantom psalms) - 幻影诗篇. Maybe making this release go public would draw b e g o t t e n 自杀’s attention back in to the label owner who was constantly craving any sort of communication. As the release ran its course online, Dennis would spend his time planning on how to figure out more about the mental institution from which the letter he received was addressed. And of course, he would be checking his email, waiting for contact of any kind.
As with all of the previous b e g o t t e n 自杀 albums that were sent to Dennis in that initial email, (phantom psalms) - 幻影诗 would also contain a poem, block of Chinese test, and music videos from the producer to go with it all. Here was the attached poem:
"A ghost is a being sent to remind
A creature of memory, outside of space and time
It returns with a vengeance, won't leave me alone
Just as happiness finds me, my honesty is blown
Another year will I last? A decade or two?
Every day is a curse, but somehow I get through
A friend is a pawn, a lover the same
Another piece of my life, just a game
I'll lose soon enough, I'll fall to the rest
Inside I have lost, I've failed the test
I deserve to disappear, and be forgotten at last."
"Please, don't touch me...stay away"
Here was the Chinese text that was also sent with this album:
就是荣耀。 2为什么国家说：“他们的神在哪里？”3我们的神在天上。 他做任何让他喜欢的事情。 4但他们的偶像是银和金，由人的手制成。他们有嘴，但不能说话， 眼睛，但看不见。他们有耳朵，但听不到，鼻子，但不能闻到。 他们有手，但感觉不到脚，但不能走路，也不能用喉咙发出声音。 8那些造他们的人，就像他们一样，所有信任他们的人也是如此。 9你们所有的以色列人相信耶和华 - 他是他们的帮助和盾牌。 10亚伦家，相信耶和华 - 他是他们的帮助和盾牌。 11敬畏他的，信耶和华 - 他是他们的帮助和盾牌。 12耶和华记念我们，要祝福我们，他将要祝福他的百姓以色列， 他将要祝福亚伦的家，13他要保佑那些敬畏耶和华 - 小和大的人。 5月14日，耶和华使你们兴起，无论你和你的孩子。 15愿耶和华，天地的造物者蒙福。 16最高的天属于耶和华，乃属于他给人类的地球。赞美耶和华的， 不是沉默的人，不是死人。 18我们现在和永远都是传扬耶和华。赞美耶和华
1 Not for us, the Lord, not for us, but because of your love and faithfulness, which is glory. 2 Why countries say: "Where is their god?" 3 Our god is in heaven. He does whatever he likes. 4 But their idols are silver and gold, made of human hands. They have mouths, but they can't talk, eyes, but they can't see. They have ears but cannot hear, noses but cannot smell. They have hands, but they cannot feel their feet, but they cannot walk or make sounds through their throats. 8 Those who made them are just like them, so are all those who trust them. 9 All you Israelites believe in the Lord-He is their help and shield. 10 House of Aaron, believe in the Lord-he is their help and shield. 11 Those who fear him, believe in the Lord-he is their help and shield. 12 The Lord remembers us and will bless us. He will bless his people Israel. He will bless the house of Aaron. 13 He will bless those who fear the Lord-small and big. On May 14, the Lord raised you up, regardless of you and your children. 15 Blessed be the Lord, the Creator of heaven and earth. 16 The highest heaven belongs to the Lord, and belongs to the earth he gave to mankind. Praise the Lord is not a silent person, not a dead person. 18 We are preaching the Lord now and forever. Praise the Lord
Music videos for the tracks (disintegrate) - 瓦解 and (neurotic) - 神经质 were also sent from b e g o t t e n 自杀. For (disintegrate) - 瓦解, we are given this extremely low-res black and white footage of a train. It most certainly seems to be security footage slowed down as we can see the individual frames of this train moving its way along the tracks. A figure appears on the tracks, glowing as if the camera detects the heat coming off of their body. Next, the person purposely puts their body in front of the path of the train, and you can guess what happens next. It’s some pretty heavy stuff so please watch at your own discretion when visiting the Bandcamp page for (phantom psalms) - 幻影诗.
The music video for (neurotic) - 神经质 returns to that low-res, VHS quality skeleton footage we’ve seen in previous music videos from b e g o t t e n 自杀. Nothing really happens here as we’re just given this glowing skeleton looking down at the floor in a dark and ominous room.
For fans of really smooth sample work, all with a creepy undertone and undeniable dark energy, (phantom psalms) - 幻影诗 is 100% for you. Its hopeless cries present in the vocal samples chosen are harrowing. The piano work feels heavier than the world, the drums decayed and beaten, and when all blended together we are served a smoothie that can put an elephant to sleep. (phantom psalms) - 幻影诗 is heavy, strong and emotional; hypnotizing, intoxicating, and alive. This album is best paired with the night time. Happy travels.
[October 8th, 2018 / GEO - 020]
If (phantom psalms) - 幻影诗 was the low point, then (happy anniversary) - 周年快乐 serves at the manic counterpart. Talk about a 180 degree turn from our last departure with (phantom psalms) - 幻影诗, (happy anniversary) - 周年快乐 gives us a mirage of okay-ness, a soothing cloak that hastily covers up the darkness we had just previously heard. And this is replicated in the artwork as well: by far the most colorful and bright b e g o t t e n 自杀 cover yet, exciting greens and euphoric blues flood the skull upon every listen. Hustle and bustle vaportrap, soothing guitars maxed out in the reverb department, chimes and jingles sounding like you threw a fluffy pillow at a gigantic, gem-infused chandelier, listening to that wonderful sound as each individual crystal is knocked into the other.
The album also wraps up with four bonus tracks, each with these really fun and hyperactive chop jobs with samples bouncing all over the place, overall, a complete contradiction from the lethargic moods heard previously on (phantom psalms) - 幻影诗.
(happy anniversary) - 周年快乐 and its generally warm sample flips and extremely short run time confuse us from everything we just heard, it’s sporadic and sudden change in tone from the last three albums is just…bizarre.
What is exactly is going on with b e g o t t e n 自杀?
"This album feels spastic, nostalgic, dreamy, and surreal. It is all over the place, as if the artist's mind was going a million miles an hour while creating it. The lo-fi-type beats mixed with 8-bit and acoustic guitar highlight just part of the sampling and experimentation this album explores."
Dennis (Owner of Geometric Lullaby)
Here was the poem b e g o t t e n 自杀 sent over with this release:
"What a happy anniversary
What a joyous span of time
What a wonderful evening
With your hand in mine
You tell me everything that you want to say
You let it all out, put it all on display
I can't say a word, my mind goes blank
I want to shed tears, say words, give thanks
So happy anniversary, from me to you
You'll never understand, they never do."
Here was the Chinese text b e g o t t e n 自杀 sent with this release:
It is easy to fall in love, but it is more difficult to stay in love with the same person for the rest of your life. It is easy to fall in love, but it is more difficult to stay in love with the same person for the rest of your life.
Even if a year has passed, the love you shared continues. Send my best wishes, and you will continue to be blessed in love and happiness.
Throughout the ages, many people searched, but never found love like the two of you. May you always have great blessings of love and happiness. happy Anniversary!
Be proud of knowing that you have the kind of love that everyone desires, and one day you will find it. May your heart always keep the love and passion like love. happy Anniversary!
Music videos for the tracks (quartz) - 石英 and (diamond) - 钻石 were given for this album. (quartz) - 石英 would feature the reverse footage of gradually burning birthday candles, instead of everything melting away we see these candles rise from the grave. (diamond) - 钻石, an extremely short track at less than a minute long, presents sped up footage of a trick or treater during Halloween.
To add some more context to the story, Dennis, the label owner of Geometric Lullaby, also spends his time performing in a band. Knowing that they would soon be on tour towards the latter part of 2018, Dennis realized that their route through the east coast of the United States would inevitably lead them past the address for the mental institution mentioned in the mysterious envelope.
Unfortunately, misfortune would strike again.
A hurricane would hit at the exact time they were supposed to drive south through Maryland, Virginia, and the Carolinas. Next up on the tour would have been Georgia, the state in which the mental asylum existed.
To make matters even worse, their engine died. Dennis notes it would’ve cost them several thousands of dollars to fix, and so instead of finally getting to the bottom of the surreal letter from our favorite little mysterious friend b e g o t t e n 自杀, they high-tailed it back home to Minneapolis from Syracuse, New York.
However...it was around this time that Dennis would finally receive an email from b e g o t t e n 自杀. It was short and it was simple. But to actually get some communication after such a long silence felt amazing. It said the following;
"Thank you. I am still alive. I am okay for now."
b e g o t t e n 自杀
Just those simple lines gave Dennis so much joy. He was glad that b e g o t t e n 自杀 was happy with how Geometric Lullaby was handling their releases. Dennis was nearly brought to tears.
At this point in our story, autumn of 2018, Dennis was yet to respond. The email was sort of final sounding, but of course, Dennis still had so many questions. At this time, Dennis wanted to take the next couple of weeks to figure out exactly what he wanted to respond with and how he wanted to say it. He was ready to continue to keep everyone updated on the situation, but thought it would be best to finally drop the fourth b e g o t t e n 自杀 album in October of 2018.
(happy anniversary) - 周年快乐 seemed to be the true calm before the storm in the saga of events between Dennis and b e g o t t e n 自杀. It was as if the melancholy musical style from the album replicated the seemingly calm section of the timeline the two virtual pen pals found themselves in at this moment. And while Dennis was relieved to finally hear back from b e g o t t e n 自杀, everything was still so odd. Any question Dennis had up until this point was still unanswered, nothing was solidified, nothing declared or figured out. Dennis took this time to focus on the label, prepare that fourth b e g o t t e n 自杀 release, and just take the time he needed to figure out his next move with the unknown producer.
In part III of our story, we’ll be wrapping everything up with b e g o t t e n 自杀.
Will Dennis figure out the truth behind the mystery?
Is it all a hoax, or something to truly be worried about?
I can promise you the oddities don’t end here and I can not wait to share with you how everything concludes. Until then, I think it’s time we put a virtual bookmark in our little story here, the insane tale of b e g o t t e n 自杀 is one of my favorite musical mysteries of all time and I hope to see you around for our final installment of what happened between Dennis and b e g o t t e n 自杀.
Thank you, we’ll talk soon.
Much love, ur boi,
Also known as "Youtube's Vaporwave Valedictorian", Pad Chennington is a content creator who has created a substantial following on YouTube for his videos discussing all things Vaporwave. Starting in the Fall of 2017, Pad's videos range from reviews to breakdowns, interviews to unboxings, and much more, always revolving around odd and interesting music genres found throughout the internet. Pad has also recently released an album in February titled "CONTRAST", available as a free download via the My Pet Flamingo label.