Interview before the show at Tel- Hai, Israel 26-5-2011
“A Fantastic event!”: One on one with Cosmosis, a trance legend, moments before he conquers Tel-Hai College. Interview by Oded Oron & Liron Gavenda – Student Newspaper “Holech Batel”
Waking up after a long night of celebrations, thousands of hung over students started piling up the compliments on a successful Student-Day, conducted and produced by the student-body. We interviewed Bill “Bilbo” Halsey, a.k.a. Cosmosis a few minutes prior to his set, Halsey spoke of touring, music and his upcoming projects – And there were no hesitations with compliments.
Where is it you are coming from just now?
I came from Tel Aviv and I just arrived this morning from Switzerland.
Where do you travel these days?
All over the place. Tomorrow I am going to Moscow to play, later this summer I have gigs in Brazil. I gig all over generally. I was in Australia earlier this year, continuing to run around all over the planet playing parties like I have since I started the Cosmosis project 16 years ago.
Actually Before I started making electronic dance music I was also a musician, a guitarist for hire, playing in bands, and did some international tours, so clearly it's my karma to be a wandering minstrel. (here's an example from 1994)
How were you welcomed when you arrived?
With open arms. I am amazed at the size of the event. It take a huge amount of work to organize this size of event and it's run by students volunteers. It's a huge party, there must be about 7,000 people here. I am very impressed.
What of the crowd?
I think it’s fantastic! I’ve only got here an hour ago and they seem to be really rocking!
Laid-back before his upcoming Psytrance set, Cosmosis found the time for more compliments, this time dedicated to the band on stage, the “Balkan Beat Box”. “They are great, I’m really diggin’ it.” He said, “I just love the drummer!” (Tamir Muskat). For us it was an opportunity to discover what makes Bill’s music so unique in the minds of others.
Where do you draw your inspiration from?
I don’t know, really, it’s just listening to music and generally stealing musical ideas from other musicians (laughs) That’s generally how music operates.
Is there an album coming out soon?
I am working on tracks for it.
Are you working on other projects?
Oh for sure! I have loads of stuff going on, I’m currently working with the Peaking Goddess Collective, which is a Swiss based 4 piece collective. I've recently been recording with them for their new album. It's an ambient-electro-dub kind of stuff. I’m also working on another rock project with a friend of mine Ajja which is a lot of fun.
How’s life, traveling for 16 years non-stop?
"It’s a lot of fun but there is a balance that needs to be drawn between on the one hand, playing too many gigs and on the other spending all my time in the studio
Running around constantly playing gigs can lead to a very unstable kind of existence. It doesn’t help my creativity and compositional output if I have too many gigs. It took me a while, but I think I've found the optimum balance now".
Balance was the last thing that was felt as Comosis filled the void. Accompanied with his guitar, Bilbo successfully destroyed the crowd, as he performed newer material and an electronic version of Pink Floyd’s “Money”.
Only, for the disappointment of the eager crowd, the dream ended 40 minutes later, as the performer had to leave for his next conquest, somewhere across the land. But for those who know Cosmosis, and his relationship with Israel, there is no doubt in mind that it will all be weighed again, on the dance floor, soon.
Bill writes in: I was booked to start at 12 midnight but unfortunately the whole event line up had overran badly. As a consequence I only got to start at 2.20 am. I was on a tight schedule to get to a club gig in Tel Aviv (2 1/2 hours frantic drive away) I had to cut my set short, which I absolutely hated to do, but there was no other way. I only just made the Tel Aviv gig. Hopefully at some point I'll get the chance to make it up to my fans up in the north of Israel at some point.