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[Interview] Cosmic Gate Opens Up On Trance & EDM

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Part of the reason why Cosmic Gate has been such a steady force over the last decade is due to their passion for bringing their signature, soul moving sound to their faithful fans around the globe. The German duo have been in the game, tearing it up since 1999, and show no signs of disappearing out of the limelight anytime soon. Nic Chagall and Bossi make it a point to constantly stay true to their roots amongst a rapidly changing music industry, which is them producing and playing what they love rather than jumping onto the scene’s newest trends. It’s this kind of originality that fans respect, and is a prime reason why the world falls in love with them year after year.

We caught up with them amidst their insanely busy summer, filled with tons of stops on their North American tour, and asked them about the overwhelming response to their new album, thoughts on controversial topics in the EDM culture, and some of their favorite moments from their career.


Hello Nic! Hi Bossi!  I want to start by telling you how much I appreciate you taking time out to talk with us.  I can imagine how busy you must be, with your new album Start To Feel having just been released, and your North American Tour underway.  

First of all, congratulations on the huge success of the album! It has had amazing reviews, and garnered many accolades, such as being given MIXMAG's Album Of The Month award.  They said it’s "fearless, panoramic, astonishing, and damn near perfect."  How does it make you feel to know that something you have put so much time and effort into has been received so well?

Thank you very much for the kind words! What can we say, we are beyond happy that the album is getting received so well, from critics and fans both. Seeing all of our work, effort, the heart and emotions we put in, every single tweet of a pleased fan, all getting shared and appreciated is simply making us happy too. With Start To Feel not following the mainstream road of EDM, but having its very own path, it was not a question for us that the album would do so well. We are more than happy!

Are there any major differences you can pinpoint that sets apart this album from your last, Wake Your Mind, which was released three years ago?

We won’t say its major differences, but of course in nearly 3 years a lot of things change in music, in dance especially. Production processes, software, mastering, little things are different and of course find such reflection in an album production. Our songwriting though is sure the same. Our, let us call it “Cosmic Gate handwriting” is not different from how it was on Wake Your Mind. Things are just more modern sounding on Start To Feel when you compare the two albums. We hopefully highered our standards a bit, as neutral listeners can maybe answer this question better than we can. In the end its always about personal taste.

I know it must be hard to pick a favorite, but are there any tracks on Start To Feel which hold a special place for you?

Its really impossible to give an answer here, as every single track on the album has a special place in our hearts and touches us somehow, otherwise it would not have been released. Personal favorites of ours often change from listen to listen, depending on the mood we are in and the environment we play it in. We hope this can be accepted as an honest answer, as we prefer people to make their mind up and find their own favorite, and to like the album in total as itself, telling a complete story from chapter to chapter.

Your summer is packed with numerous stops for your Start To Feel tour in North America, some of which Andrew Rayel will be accompanying you on.  What can the fans expect to see this time around?

Its true, Andrew Rayel is supporting us in some of the bigger venues around for the tour. We also will bring Eric Lumiere to perform "Falling Back" and Kristina Antuna with her song “Alone" too. We have brand new visuals for the shows to give them something extra. For the first time, we are touring in a bus, which gives some additional rock ‘n roll feeling on top for us. We just started and have had a lot of fun with our whole crew already with much more to come. If we are in a city near you, do not miss out!

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One of the last stops on your tour is Electric Zoo in New York City.  It won't be the first time you've played this festival.  Are you looking forward to returning there and debuting some of your new material?

Yes, absolutely! Electric Zoo sure was one of our best shows we ever had in the US when we played back, we think it was in 2010. That’s why we are looking forward to presenting ourselves and a bunch of our new music from Start To Feel in NYC for Ezoo again. It’s sure to be one of the many highlights of this busy summer that is still ahead of us.

Switching subjects briefly, I wanted to touch on a more recent topic within the electronic music community.  There has been talk within the scene of "prerecorded sets", and how there are some artists who feel that it could be viewed as "impossible to get up on stage and wing it and mix whatever."  What are your thoughts on this, being that you are known for doing just that and playing what you feel is right for the crowd at any specific moment?  Do you feel that the actual art of mixing and beat-matching has decreased in importance with the increase in technology over the years? 

With the help of laptops and certain software, beat matching sure is not that important anymore. A lot of actual producers suddenly are on stage playing a DJ set, or maybe a kind of pre-programmed DJ set, which is certainly not our thing. We would not ever want to do this, as there are so many aspects that can affect the music we play. The vibe of an event, what the prior artist played before us, a last minute adjustment in set time or length, weather changing or electricity failing are just some of the variables which could affect our song choices. There are so many reasons for us to just go and follow our intuition when it comes to the next track to play or how to build our set. This is what we are used it after so many years of DJing.

Pre-recorded sets might work at some festivals for some artists for sure, but we see the art of DJing simply a bit different. We like to beat match and decide in the second what to play, and this will never change for sure.

If you could, name a few of your most memorable shows over the last decade of your career. 

Wow, this is a hard question to answer, as we were blessed with so many great shows over the years. The first memorable show was Trance Energy back in 2002, which was something like the start of our international career. A lot of requests form all over the world happened after this performance.

Amazing festivals over the years followed, like Tomorrowland, EDC, and Creamfields. Clubs like Zouk Singapore, The Guvernment in Toronto, State in Buenos Aires, and Ministry of Sound in London. Some solo shows like in the Palladium LA or in Melbourne for 5000 people are fantastic memories for us too. All of these events are worth being mentioned, and we are sure we forgot some that belong in here as well. Most importantly, we hope there are more to come!

Thank you both so much for your perspective, and once again it's been an honor to speak with you.  Enjoy your summer and keep doing what you do, we love it!

Thank you very much for the interview, we hope everyone is having a great summer as well!!


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