Meet: Monnie - Lately EP
After playing with the likes of Thelma Plum and Sweater Curse, we get to know the Naarm/Melbourne-based songwriter & multi-instrumentalist and her debut EP
Image credit: Brianna Da Silva
After years of honing her skills as a bass player touring with Thelma Plum and a member of indie rockers Sweater Curse, the time is right for Monnie to step out in solo mode and after having released a string of singles and some, she's readied her debut EP, Lately.
Across six tracks, Lately sees Monnnie delivering her unique take on pulsating pop sounds, exploring growing pains, relationship anxiety and other all too relatable experiences through clever wordplay across a range of upbeat & melodic compositions.
With her debut EP featuring a collaboration with her friend Forest Claudette and having recently supported Northeast Party House on a national tour, we got to know Monnie!
After playing in bands for a while, how does it feel to have your debut solo EP out to the world?
Having a solo EP out is pretty bizarre for me to be honest, but also exhilarating. In a band, you get to anticipate and celebrate together, and for me the collaborative process and the shared experience of joy and excitement when creating something meaningful together is one of the best things in life. Having said that, working with different people and creating new music and a new sound for this project has been very liberating, fun and rewarding. There are lots of great things about the indie scene in this country, but I found that everything and everyone had to be very serious at all times, especially in rock music. And the definition of 'serious' is very specific in this particular context. I wanted to be able to express myself however I felt was appropriate without arbitrary reasons about what is 'serious' and therefore good.
What was the creative process like for Lately? Were the tracks written with an EP in mind or did it come together as you wrote?
The creative process for Lately was really fun! I had all of these ideas and desires to do things I hadn't had the chance to do before, write pop music and try new things. So, when doing writing sessions with various people the same kind of themes came up and the EP came together quite nicely as I was enjoying the writing process. It was a really fun way to explore a new direction for my music making!
What was it like working with Forest Claudette on Tell Me Something?
Kobe (Forest Claudette) and I spent a lot of time together once I moved to Naarm mid-2021 - it was lockdown and everything was closed so we spent our time doing things like writing songs and talking about shows/books etc. and in that time we wrote Tell Me Something together. We wrote a fair few demos together for fun and Tell Me Something, like the others, came together pretty quickly! Kobe and I share a lot of similar interests and tastes and we both love to really get in the weeds of songwriting, especially when it comes to lyrics and melody. So, it was a joy writing with them!
How are the songs from Lately feeling on the live stage?
I love performing live, I always have loved putting on a show. I have such a fun live set that I've worked on with friends and colleagues, starting at Bigsound 2022. Me and my friends Golda, Finley and Dameila came together for rehearsals with Dameila on the decks and Golda and Finley as dancers. I'd written a few ideas/feelings for each of the songs to express as some direction for the choreography, as well as some character references for our stage presences. Golda, Finley and Dameila came up with the majority of the choreo we still use in the live show, and I was able to work with a choreographer Zoe (Insta @zoeemoves) in Naarm to flesh out some routines for Bored, Tell Me Something and Read, No Reply. One of my favourite songs to play live is Spiral Fracture because we created a story for the performance of the song with props and costumes that is always a little different and always lots of fun. I love being able to perform on stage with my friends, and feel so lucky to be so supported by them on stage and off.
How can people best support your art?
Come to a show! Listen to the EP! Follow me on socials! Send me messages on Tumblr(lol)! talk to ur friends about my music! But also, only if you want to, there's a lot of good music out there and artists who deserve our attention. I also love collaboration so if you also make music do a remix or message me - let's collab!
What’s next for Monnie?
I am hoping to continue creating music and fun visual accompaniments to release! I created a zine for the Lately EP that is going to be distributed at various Eora/Sydney and Naarm/Melbourne cafes/community radios etc, so keep your eyes peeled for that.
What have you been listening to lately?
Lately, I have been listening to the Barbie soundtrack. I know I know, it's being done! But Mark Ronson really went all out for that soundtrack. I especially love the PinkPantheress song. I've also been listening to Felivand, Lonelyspeck, Kee'Ahn and Miss Kannina to mention a few.