Posts Tagged ‘Anne McCue’

Girl Monstar – Esplanade Hotel St Kilda 11 July 1992

girl_monstar_hoptounAfter a wretched ’91 which saw many a guileless critic write them off for dead, 1992 promises to be the year of Girl Monstar, when their unique semi tough addictive brand of rock “n” roll is at
last made communicable to the hungry world at large. With their debut album “Monstereo Delicio” finally in  circulation, and ace plucker Janene Abbott filling the rhythm gulf left by Damian beyond all expectations,  things are very much on the up and up. I just can’t figure why they’re not gainfully employed superstars already.
Monstar Maniacs from every corner of Melbourne have converged on St Kilda’s (in)famous Espy for tonight’s she-rock shindig and I can sense a welcome dose of Monstar medicine on it’s way. What I haven’t anticipated is the very palatable pairing of Sherry and Anne,  arriving on stage in their mellow, acoustic guise – The Honeybees. The punters are provided with a half hour set of easy listening favourites as a prelude to the Monstarous main course. Citing highlights from The Honeybees set is much like splitting hairs, but I’ll chuck in my two bucks worth. Their duet on Neil Young’s ‘There Comes A Time’ rates honourable mention, as does the passionate rendition of “I’m A Believer” .  Sherry’s handling of “These Boots Are Made For Walking” renders every other version – Nancy Sinatra’s
included, obsolete. And I’d sell my left lung and buy a Hawthorn membership ticket to hear Anne McCue’s  one in a million voice illustrate the dreamy lyrics of “Ventura Highway” one more time.

The sensitive, wistful stuff done with, Melbourne’s own rock “n” roll wet dream cum queens  of noise – the mighty Girl Monstar – crash the stage opening with a tumultuous version of Alice Cooper’s  definitive road song “Raped and Freezin”. A couple of old favourites follow, the dramatic bitch anthem,  “Maneater” and Anne’s rueful soap opera, “Johnny”. “Are You Ever” is nothing less than a three minute invitation to salvation, a priceless cut of melody from the wizard ink of Sherry V – it sticks in the brain in the  nicest possible way. Another ace from the Valier deck – the telling ballad “If Only You Knew”, also carries the mark of Monstar magic.
The David/Bacharach classic “Walk On By” receives special treatment from lead guitarist  Anne. After the way the dirty old Stranglers mauled it in the late 70’s, it’s a delight to hear Anne’s angelic  vocal delivery give it fresh life. Her own composition “Higher Than High” is white hot pop and proves that  she can write ’em as good as she can sing ’em. A juiced up “Egomaniac” (Surely one of the best tunes ever committed to a B – side) is further evidence of her creative merits. “Surfing On A Wave Of Love”, dare I say their signature tune, is the night’s fitting finale,  but if it hadn’t been for the house lights coming on at such a rude interval, we may have seen the Bardot of percussion, Susie World take the mic for “Headbanger I Luv U”, the only track from “Monstereo Delicio”  not to get an airing tonight. This band has well and truly transcended the novelty status imposed on it from its earliest day. If Girl Monstar don’t make it logic is hopeless. (Archive Source: Monstar Maniacs Issue 1 – July / Aug 1992) by Bruce Earl



Melbourne’s Girl Monstar first walked onto a stage at a club called ‘Heroes’ in Carlton, North Melbourne – 25 years ago. ‘Heroes’ – probably better well-known as ‘Hearts’ was a busy Nicolson Street live venue in the 70’s and 80’s – but today provides residential apartment living. Another iconic live venue bites the dust….wonder if the rock n roll ghosts keep the home-owners awake at night ? The Boys Next Day apparently played their final gig there – and, some years later – Girl Monstar would plug the amps in for the first time there too – endings and beginnings from a rock n roll haze. GM had me hooked very early in their career – and this band and their infectious brand of rock n roll have long been a part of my life. 25 years ! Was it Noel Gallagher who wrote ‘… it’s never gonna be the same, coz the years are falling by like the rain’ – never a truer word spoken my friends. Looking back, music fans of my generation were spoilt for live rock n roll back in the 70’s and 80’s -and by gosh the talent pool here in  Australia was immense. Girl Monstar were a band who I would’ve’ seen around 50 or so times, probably more. Back then – when life was less complicated – I just wanted to rock – and let me tell you – Girl Monstar delivered. Apart from those who had their ear to the ground – their name may be unfamiliar to many. But make no mistake – their legacy looms large. How rare is it to find a band where all four members can sing great, perform well and possess stage-prowess personalities as well ?! Bassplayer Damian Child was an essential ingredient to the band – stalking the stage at right with a BC Rich, gravel throat and charisma a-plenty. She would depart in 1991. Drummer Susie World was – and still is – a powerhouse behind the skins. Lindy Morrison often gets the wording when the press think ‘Australian female drummer’. I saw Sue drum enough times to know that she’d pummel Morrison in the department of percussion. No contest. Sherry Valier and Anne McCue did most of the writing and it was apparent to me and the Gig Lizard very early on – that both had star potential. No fluke that the now-Nashville-based McCue has gone on to forge a career in music and has a solid worldwide fan base. She’s got where she has on talent alone and when Lucinda Williams correctly labelled her ‘an amazing guitarist’ around ten years back now, some of us had long been aware of this. Do you own any Anne McCue albums ? Man, you should – she is building an impressive back-catalogue which is worth exploring. Sherry also has produced an amazing body of work which stands her on par with any big-name writer to come out of Australia. Yep, her tunes are that good. I could write about Girl Monstar until the sun comes up, but instead – I will direct you to – it’s all there. 11th of November 1988 was the date folks – Carlton in North Melbourne the place – a place where some Australian rock n roll history began.

Who: Girl Monstar
Where: Esplanade Hotel, St Kilda, Melbourne – 11 July, 1992

Looking back I would’ve shot more rolls of film on Girl Monstar than any other artist. They were an amazing rock n roll band who should’ve made the big time. Alas. This photograph of guitarist Anne McCue and drummer Susie World was taken at the Espy in St Kilda on a cold winter’s night back in 1992. It seems like yesterday. I quite like this pic as Susie is looking straight at me whilst Annie is focusing on the fretboard. Girl Monstar are one of the bands featured (and justifiably so) in the upcoming ‘Rock Chicks’ exhibition at Melbourne’s Arts Centre beginning November 6. Detailed info on Girl Monstar (and many other great live photo’s) can be found at the Girl Monstar Fan Site

Anne McCue is one of the most influential guitarists of our time. Tune in to hear an exclusive interview that was recorded on September 21, 2010. Mr Rockbrat covers many aspects of Anne’s career – from her days with Melbourne outfit Girl Monstar to her most recent album ‘Broken Promise Land’.  When ? 9PM AEST Monday 27th September 2010 – Rockbrat Radio can be found here

(Flying Machine Records)

‘Broken Promise Land’ is the most recent release from Australian guitarist Anne McCue. It’s been lodged in my car stereo for some time now and I thought a review by the Rockbrat was long overdue. Firstly, the CD packaging is great – a digipak release with some stunning photo’s of Anne by Lisa Galipeau. The first track ‘Don’t Go To Texas (Without Me)’ is by far my favourite on the album – a mix of dirty loud guitar and a catchy-as-all-hell chorus. This is another soon-to-be McCue classic and is up there as one of the best songs released in 2010 – anywhere. The accompanying video is also one of McCue’s best and is worth your viewing time. The Rockbrat-ears also loved ‘Lonesome Child’ – which displays Anne’s vocal range quite nicely (I could imagine Skynyrd covering this thumping tune live and taking it to another level), the starkness of ‘The Lonely One’ and a bruising take of Rose Tattoo’s ‘Rock n Roll Outlaw’. This blooze-based classic has been in Anne’s live set for some time and has some ace slide work. It’s a damn shame Rose Tattoo’s Pete Wells and Mick Cocks are no longer here to enjoy this, as I’m sure they both would. Anne McCue has written and recorded some truly stunning songs over the years, tracks like: ‘Arcane’, ‘Desert In The Rain’, ‘Laughing’, ‘I Want You Back’, ‘Stupid’, ‘Tiny Little Song’, ‘Roll’, ‘Ballad Of An Outlaw Woman’, ‘Driving Down Alvarado’, ‘From Bakersfield To Saigon’, ‘Hellfire Raiser’, ‘Lay Me Down’, ‘Too Late For Love’, ‘Money In The Morning’, ‘Do It The Right Way’….and you must of course include the current track ‘Texas’ in here as well. These are just some of my personal favourites, but when you stack them up in a list you see what a remarkable body of work Annie has amassed. There is a ‘Greatest Hits’ album there just staring back you – if she ever feels the desire that is. When I first saw Anne McCue in the late 80’s she had true star potential. Some years on, her star not only continues to shine, but  she constantly produces the goods – releasing vital albums which are filled with amazing rock songs. For those in the know, I am preaching to the converted – but for unitiated – it’s time you climbed on board and became an Anne fan. Anne McCue is currently on the road in support of this album, with an Australian visit locked in for November. The Rockbrat suggests you go buy and then go see.

Just over 20 years ago – in November of 1988 – an all-female rock n roll band from Melbourne Australia (featuring Sherry Rich and Anne McCue) stepped onto the tiny stage at a pub in North Melbourne and performed their debut show. They were called Girl Monstar – and for nearly two decades, the band – and indeed the individual members – have played – and continue to play a large part of my brother’s life – (he once ran their fan club and runs So to celebrate the 20th anniversary of one of Australia’s greatest rock ‘n’ roll bands – this episode of Buried Treasure Podcast is dedicated to Girl Monstar

Running time 2 hours, 35 minutes
File size: 141 mb

Download the Girl Monstar Tribute Podcast


Sherry Valier – guitar / vocals
Anne McCue – lead guitar / vocals
Sue World – drums
Damian Child – bass
Janene Abbott – bass

Girl Monstar
Sherry Rich
Anne McCue
Damian Child
Sue World



The now defunct Girl Monstar, were not just another all-girl group. Anyone close to me will know how much I loved this band, and anyone who ever witnessed them live will attest to the warmth and magic that made them what they were. A very special act who achieved a lot in their five year career (but never really fulfilled their potential, otherwise they’d be stars – I blame certain parts of the media for this !) before that big Monstar engine finally ran out of steam. Their first two singles, ‘Surfing On A Wave Of Love’ and ‘Joe Cool’ both reached number one on the indie charts – and this, their debut full length album went largely ignored. Shame too, cause ‘Monstereo Delicio’ is packed full of white hot rock n roll. Recorded in 1991 (with original bass player Damian Child, although her replacement Janene Abbott is pictured on the cover) but not seeing release until mid 1992, the album displays all the raw talent and sound associated with that first line-up, an album etched in Monstar magic. Crowd favourite ‘Are You Ever’ begins the mayhem, quickly followed by ‘Teenage Dinosaur’ – Damian’s gravel throat vocals shining through on the chorus. Video single ‘Higher Than High’ leaves me in no doubt that Anne McCue could write ’em as good as she could sing ’em (their colourful video for this song shoulda seen more air-play !) The songwriting talents of Sherry Valier are a standout. ‘Jason Please’ and ‘Don’t Blame Me’ highlight this. A nice acoustic intro on ‘Jason Please’ allows the listener a moment alone with Sherry’s smooth tones. Anne’s creativity runs riot on ‘Johnny’, with some nice guitar work here also. The dramatic bitch anthem ‘Maneater’ was another live favourite, and loses none of it’s raw power here either. ‘He’s So Cruel’ is a song that could’ve been anything. Cutting guitars and sharp vocals ensure this song stick in your head for days. Great opening line, “Baby plays with razors – cuts me all the time”. The album rounds off with ‘My Baby Makes Me Stay Up All Night’ – another Valier original, and put simply, a wonderfully written stop-start rock n roll song ! Drummer Susie World handles lead vocals on ‘Headbanger – I Love You’ and the Bardot of percussion puts in a confident performance on this heavy handed number. Bonus hit single tracks ‘Joe Cool’ and ‘Egomaniac’ (surely one of the best ever tunes committed to a B-side) draws to a close ‘Monstereo Delicio’. Someone once wrote “If Girl Monstar don’t make it – logic is hopeless”. Well there you have it – logic IS hopeless. Sherry is now fronting her hot band of Grievous Angels, Susie is drumming with the Exotics, Damian is now with Sine, and at last report Anne was seen playing acoustic gigs in Melbourne’s wine bars. I leave you to go and discover this album, and with it, that something very special that was associated with this band. Thanks for the memories girls.