German trance duo Cosmic Gate talks sound, style, and success in the music industry.
All the way from Germany, born in 1999 when Terhoevan and Bossems decided to form a new project within the electronic music field. With their first single being “The Drums” followed by “Exploration of Space” and Mental Atmosphere” and their “Somewhere over the Rainbow” remix using samples from The Wizard Of Oz. They became well know after thei single “Fire Wire” was released in 2001.
Previously having done remixes for notable artists within the Electronic Dance Music industry from Tiësto Ferry Corsten, Blank & Jones, Israel Kamakawiwo’ole, Svenson & Gielen and Vanessa-Mae.
Today the trance legendries have some ideas on the mysteries behind their sound! Check out the interview below.
ASL365: What inspired you to start producing trance music?
CG: In the end when you DJ in clubs as we both did, there eventually comes the time when you wonder if you could write music too for people to dance to. Then you maybe get a drum machine, sampler and a synth, start experimenting, meet other likeminded guys, throw the equipment together – and one day hopefully there is a track that gets signed from a label. That’s how it independently started for both of us… and then the story continues, there are bigger DJ shows, better labels releasing the music, so in the end, it was a very long process of learning and hard work. Social media could not blow you out there in a heartbeat, but we are thankful for that time of learning, it prepared us well for all that was coming since.
ASL365: You have been in this music scene for 20 years now! How do you manage to be successful over a long time?
CG: Maybe this is a question that other people could state out easier than us ourselves, eventually. If we might have a guess, we think it is because we are simply just doing us and what we love, as weird as this might sound! We do not run behind trends, as we know they come and go, we simply do our own thing and when writing music we follow our guts and heart, not our brain. What styles are successful at times is secondary to us, we write and release tunes that touch ourselves at first, and hope our fans will follow, that’s how it was from day one, and always will be…
ASL365: You’re trance legends and have continued to push the genre forward while many artists have shifted to pop and commercial sounds. Is this still your favourite genre to produce and play out?
CG: Yes, it sure is, even if we have a bit of a wider understanding of what our genre actually is. On longer sets we add tracks from – say – acts like Tale of Us or maybe Artbat, so deeper and more progressive tunes than most other trance acts would do. We simply feel their music is fresh and good, and of course not being Trance, but it fits and adds up towards the style of what we do, and we find it important to play these tunes that maybe not everyone would know or expect in our set. This, in the end, is the art of djing for us, sometimes surprising the crowd is not a bad thing…
ASL365: How would you like to define your sound?
CG: We think the best fitting term for it, still is progressive Trance, as much or as little these two words mean, they possibly wrap it up the best. We feel it might be the best to listen to our albums and DJ sets for everyone interested in us to make their own mind up about it; words often do not mean a lot, and progressive Trance sure does not help if you are not really deeply involved in producing and the DJ biz yourself.
ASL365: You were born in Krefeld, how has living in Germany influenced your music and your musical career?
CG: Of course the environment you grow up in, family, friends, school, the overall vibe of the city and area will reflect in everyone’s life, and of course all of this will find its influences in every creative process like music that is sure is undeniable. The area we are from was pretty much on the forefront of electronic music, the famous band Kraftwerk, true pioneers of Techno music are from Duesseldorf, which is super close to Krefeld. So yeah, sure our German background was very influential, also living close to the Dutch border was important too, the influence of all these early DJ mixes shows especially from the Dutch side were pretty big for us, so maybe we are combining the best from both countries, who knows 🙂
ASL365: You’ve done almost 300 of your radio shows. How do you handle that and how do you make each radio show unique?
CG: A weekly radio show, of course, is highly depending on the releases that are out, and so, of course, are we. In the end we simply try to find the music each week, representing our taste in Trance and progressive music. What we do love a lot, is to support new artists, the new guys on the block and their releases, be a platform for music that is not heard everywhere yet. In general these days DJs are maybe playing it too safe, basically hits only, but what is the sense in this, we are no-hit radio stations that have to fulfil quote. In our eyes DJs have a responsibility, to find new and interesting stuff, or play music the crowd might not necessarily hear. We try this for example with our Private Playlist tune on WYM Radio; every week, we play a track mostly out of the electronica/tech/deep progressive genre, to introduce it to our fans, and share a bit of what we like besides Trance!
ASL365: After so many years in your career do you feel an intense pressure before getting on stage or you’ve gotten used to it now?
CG: No, honestly we never felt an intense pressure ever. There is a feeling of excitement, like butterflies in the stomach before a big show maybe, but its a positive emotion, which we can then release in energy when being on stage. Anxiety or pressure would not be helpful, we both simply played numerous big shows before Cosmic Gate even started, so we, fortunately, were trained and kind of prepared for what was waiting.
ASL365: How do you guys handle disagreements when it comes to music production?
CG: Actually our tastes are pretty similar, one of us super liking something, and the other one totally not, actually doesn’t happen. If one of us does not feel a part of production though, we simply put it aside, easily handled democracy works simply the best 🙂
ASL365: Any projects happening at the moment and anything you can tease for the rest of 2019?
CG: We just remixed a tune for Armin Van Buuren, which from what we know is coming out in 2019 still, then we have our own productions in the making for release in early 2020, we will keep you guys in the loop!
Thank you very much for having us 🙂
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