It’s been a busy year for Melbourne duo Tim McMillan and Rachel Snow who spend eight months of the year based in Germany and performing across Europe, with over 100 concerts in Germany, Italy, Iceland, Poland, Japan and the UK. Together Tim – a percussive fingerstyle guitarist and outlandish storyteller, and Rachel – an exceptional violinist and accomplice in Tim’s whimsical narrative have gained a reputation for performing entertaining sets full of lively music, entrancing vocals and a good slice of humour.
We chat with the duo ahead of their upcoming Aussie summer tour.
First up, can you describe your music in five words?
Fingerstyle Goblincore Celtic Folk Metal
With more than 100 concerts overseas, did a particular city/country stand out as a highlight?
Each country brought some wonderful experiences! Iceland definitely stands out as the scenery is breathtaking and some venues were so remote it was almost like being on another planet! We would come in from a long journey to find a warm and cosy atmosphere with welcoming hosts and a super friendly audience.
Tell us about your new album ‘Reveries’ – how did this one come together?
It came together quite spontaneously. The pieces have been coming together over a year or so between touring with different inspirations from all the beautiful places we visit and the kind people who we meet along the way. But we didn’t really plan to go to the studio to record an album. Our manager booked us in there telling us it was in a beautiful castle so I think we were actually more excited to be exploring the Rohrsdorf Castle! But when we met the engineer Arno Jordan and saw the beautiful studio everything fell easily into place and we had the whole album finished in 5 days.
With eight months out of the year spent overseas – what is it that brings you back to Australia?
We love travelling and it’s a dream to be able to make a living from music but one of the hardest parts of being on the road is missing our family and friends back in Australia. There really is no place like home which is why we are so happy to be able to spend the summer with our loved ones and also explore and perform in new places in our own beautiful country.
What’s the biggest thing you’ve learned about performing live on your journey so far?
We’ve played all sorts of concerts in all sorts of venues from clubs, theatres, a treehouse, mines, folk festivals, living rooms and we’ve even toured with Motorhead legend Phil Campbell. What we’ve learned is that every stage no matter the size can be a thoroughly rewarding experience. We’ve learned to modify our set for each situation and it is such a great feeling to win positive reactions and responses from the contrasting audiences.
Any last words?
We’re very much looking forward to coming home to Australia and can’t wait to share the music from our new album!
When & Where: Westernport Hotel, San Remo – December 1, The Lost Ones, Ballarat – December 11, The Musical Garden, Benalla – December 13, Open Studio, Melbourne – December 20, Palais-Hepburn, Hepburn Springs – February 7 & The Workers Club, Melbourne – March 13.