In its simplest definition, “materia” is the Latin root word meaning matter, base and the substance that all things are made of. After giving their upcoming album a listen, I can understand why Trance legends Cosmic Gate have decided to give their latest release this most fitting title.
It is difficult for artists to keep up with the constant waves of change in the music industry; but after over fifteen years in the game and a sound ranging from Hard Trance anthems (Exploration of Space, Fire Wire) to their newer Progressive Trance beats (Falling Back, Be Your Sound), Nic Chagall and Bossi have found themselves riding “the wave” and emerging from the waters with an album that will go on to define Cosmic Gate.
“maybe these’ll be the ones that, over time, people will hold up and say: “hey, this is what Cosmic Gate are all about”.” -Bossi.
01. Cosmic Gate & JES – Fall Into You (3:27)
The album, chapter one of a two-part release, opens with euphoric powerhouse vocals by JES in “Fall Into You”. The song, which was released last month, has a darker sound with a climactic drop that takes over the entire track eventually smoothing out to have us listen to JES' voice one last time. The tune seems to continue the broody elements that they left us with in their last album with “Yai (Here We Go Again)” and perfectly emulates the track while still holding strong to its own identity.
02. Cosmic Gate & Ilan Bluestone – Spectrum (Album Mix) (4:14)
A stand-out track, “Spectrum” sees the second collaboration on their album, this time with Anjunabeats' own Ilan Bluestone. This bass-heavy progressive trance track delivers a chilling mid-song breakdown with a lengthy build that is pure Cosmic Gate and a drop that is undeniably Ilan Bluestone. It is a great join venture between two veterans and a growing talent that has been dominating the trance charts in recent years.
03. Cosmic Gate & Eric Lumiere – Edge Of Life (Album Mix) (4:41)
“Edge of Life” finds Cosmic Gate partnering up with Eric Lumiere again (they last worked together on “Falling Back” in 2014) and it seems as though the third time is the charm for them. Showcasing Lumiere's soaring vocals, the track builds from its intro to an epic, dance-friendly break before leveling back out to Lumiere's standout voice.
04. Cosmic Gate & Ferry Corsten – Dynamic (3:19)
After teaming up last fall for “Event Horizon”, Cosmic Gate enlists Ferry Corsten to pick up where they left off in “Dynamic”. The track is a darker, broodier trance anthem with a synth-heavy beat throughout. I was kept in suspense waiting for a massive drop, but I am more than happy with the end result: a deeper, mysterious sounding collaboration between two Trance heavy-hitters.
05. Cosmic Gate & Alastor – Fight The Feeling (Album Mix) (5:14)
My personal favorite track out of Materia- Chapter.One has to be “Fight The Feeling” with Alastor. This massive track delivers a huge punch of not only trance, but of a vocal aching to be the next gay anthem. The spine-tingling lyrics reverberating mid-song and those epic synth drops immediately transported me to my early twenties when I rocked out to Jeanie Tracy's “Turn It Out” on the dance-floor of the Avalon Hollywood.
06. Cosmic Gate & Tim White – The Deep End (Album Mix) (6:00)
“The Deep End”, a collaboration with Tim White, is another progressive track that relies on the current festival-style system of sing-a-long vocals with the expected mid-tempo drop. Not that there is anything wrong with the structure, it just seems lackluster compared to other tracks on the album, especially after having to follow “Fight The Feeling”.
07. Cosmic Gate – am2pm (3:03)
In one of only two tracks that showcases Cosmic Gate without any collaborations, “am2pm” is exactly what I come to expect out of Nic and Bossi. Released in early 2016 as part of their mix compilation album, Wake Your Mind Sessions 002, the track delivers on the hypnotic melodies and soft breakdown that trance music is known for.
08. Cosmic Gate & Julie Thompson – Fireflies (Album Mix) (4:23)
In what is possibly the biggest departure from the sounds Materia delivers, Cosmic Gate joins forces with Julie Thompson in the final partnership of the album, “Fireflies”. The track carries Thompson's high vocals over a string of piano chords and eventually builds to a dark, almost deep house sounding, beat. It is definitely a more chill-out track than a danceable trance song.
09. Cosmic Gate – Halo (Album Mix) (5:08)
Closing out Materia- Chapter.One is “Halo”, a powerful trance anthem that will come to define the immense talent Cosmic Gate is known for. The track immediately draws you in with thumping synth and features a tension building drop mid-song. The melody stands alone after the first drop while quickly gaining traction again and casacades into a climactic ending. One of the best tracks of the album, “Halo” effortlessly closes out chapter one of Materia.
Cosmic Gate's Materia- Chapter.One is available on preorder via iTunes and will be released January 20th. That same day, the duo will kick off their Materia Album Tour alongside Alastor in Los Angeles.
Other stops on their North American tour include San Francisco, New York City, Miami and Dallas. For the full list of tour dates and to purchase tickets click here.
Look for an in-depth tour kick-off review and exclusive interview with the boys next week!