Courtney and Arden Kurhayez, 19-year-old twin sisters from the suburbs of Chicago, started playing music when they were five years old. After both girls getting drum lessons at the age of five, Arden switched to guitar when she was eight. There was no looking back after this point, and together the twin duo made the pop/rock band Double Identity. With a four song EP out, the duo lives and breathes music. They perform at music festivals as well as performing intimate acoustic performances for birthdays and other parties.
When discussing writing their own songs, Arden stated, “I’ll usually start writing with a vocal melody or guitar riff in mind and start shaping the song from there. Once I have a good idea of the direction the song is heading, I’ll bring it to Courtney so we can work through any rough parts together, then we’ll add in drums and bass once we have the guitar and lyrics down. Since I’m accustomed to writing on my own, I think it would be a fun challenge to write with other people from the start.”
“Our debut EP, ‘Small Talk’, came out in April of this year, and since it’s our first record, I guess the inspiration came from pretty much all of the artists that we’ve listened to and who have helped to shape our sound. The older style of Against the Current helped to partly inspire us, but overall, it was basically just the teen angst of all of the drama that happens in high school, at least as a subject matter. As for artists, it’s Against the Current, The Summer Set, Sabrina Carpenter, Taylor Swift, Selena Gomez, and a ton of different artists, but definitely a lot of totally awesome female musicians,” commented Courtney regarding the inspiration for their music.
As for the genre of their music, Courtney said, “The question of our genre of music is always so hard for me. I think that we fall pretty solidly in the pop/rock category, because we’re definitely not just pop or just rock. I guess we dabble a bit in the pop punk range, but pop/rock seems to best the closest label to our sound. Honestly, I don’t really like to label it, because then it feels like we’re stuck in a box with our sound. When Arden and I are writing, we aren’t thinking about th
e genre of a song, we’re just trying to make something that we would want to listen to even if it wasn’t our own band—the genre gets influenced by whatever music or artists we’re obsessed with at the time of writing that song, or, usually, the feelings and emotion behind the subject that we’re writing about.”
Arden also commented on the band’s genre, saying, “I can never give a straight answer to this question, because I feel like some of our songs are more pop, others rock, while others lean more towards pop-punk. The only thing I can say for sure is that there’s usually heavily distorted guitars involved!”
Both Arden and Courtney have differing favorite aspects of performing.
“I would have to say that my favorite aspect of performing live is being able to share a part of myself with the audience. Hearing songs played live versus on a recording is an entirely different experience, and performing brings them to a new level. I love the energy that comes along with it, and there’s the added human interaction that allows for more emotion to be shown as well,” Arden stated.
Courtney also replied by saying, “Overall, I just love performing. Making music is a ton of fun, and to be able to do it with my twin sister makes it that much better. Just being able to goof around and have fun with my bandmates is one of the reasons why we have so much fun performing. One of my favorite things about being in this band is seeing the reaction from younger kids. Adults will say they like your music even if they don’t, just to be nice. Kids don’t do that. So, it means so much to us when a kid or someone around our age genuinely tells us that they really like our sound or our songs. Years ago, I had a young girl come up to me and say that she started taking drum lessons after seeing me perform, and I can’t even describe how much that meant to me.”
Arden commented on her favorite aspect of performing. “I love having an outlet for everything I feel/have felt/will feel. There’s a difference between writing songs for yourself and keeping them to yourself, and being able to share them with others. Being in a band gives me the space and support to do that, as well as the opportunity to share my experiences. Plus, my fellow bandmates are pretty great, and I think it’s really cool that we all get to do this together.”
The Kurhayez sisters love performing both original songs and covers of some of their favorite bands and artists. From 80’s hits to more recent songs and their originals, this duo plays a wide variety of music when they perform live.
“My favorite original song to perform live is called ‘Never Wanted Us’—it’s one of our new ones that will be on the next EP. The vibe is more closely related to the songs on the Small Talk EP, but it’s totally angsty and I love it. You can watch a live acoustic version from inside the WRSE studio. As for my favorite cover to perform, it’d have to be ‘Talk’ by Against the Current. It’s so high energy,” Courtney said.
Arden commented, “Currently, my favorite original song to play live would have to be ‘Lights Out’ which is off of our Small Talk EP. However, I can already tell that there’s one song off of our next EP that is quickly taking its place at the top of my list, but everyone else will have to wait a little longer to hear it! As for a cover, I think “Strangers Again” by Against the Current is fun, as well as “Better Than Revenge” by Taylor Swift.”
As for the future, both sisters replied with big plans and ideas.
“We hope to go on tour within the next few years, which would be really exciting. Right now, we’re writing songs for our sophomore EP, which will hopefully be released around this time next year. We’re planning on releasing a single off of it in early 2019, so stay tuned for that!” Courtney commented.
“I’m mainly focused on perfecting our sound for the next EP. I can already tell that this collection of songs is going to be bigger and better than anything we’ve released thus far, and I’m insanely excited to get it out there,” said Arden.
Arden and Courtney like to listen to a lot of different genres of music. Some of their favorite artists are Against the Current, Sabrina Carpenter, Selena Gomez, The Summer Set, 5 Seconds of Summer, All Time Low, and Taylor Swift.
As for an age demographic, Courtney stated, “We would love to have our age demographic be people around our age, so in their teens and in their 20’s. We want people of all ages to enjoy our music, but I’ve always loved the idea of artists and their fans growing up together. I know I loved, and still love that about a lot of the artists that I listen to. So, it’d be great to be the one making the music this time!”
Courtney also made a statement on how they are an all-female group by noting, “Those who have seen us live know that we have another girl, Kyra, who performs with us at our live shows, so aside from when we have special guests with us on stage, the core performing members are all-female. Growing up doing a lot of battle of the bands, or just performances in general, we’ve found that it’s pretty rare to find an all-female band. I sing and play the drums at the same time, which is something that you don’t see too often. For one, female musicians typically don’t play the drums. There are some awesome girl drummers out there, but in my personal experience, I haven’t encountered too many in person. I also sing lead a lot too, so the combination of that often surprises people.”
Check out Double Identity on YouTube, Spotify, and iTunes. Also follow them on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.