Typical narratives about twins center on innate, idiosyncratic closeness. Most people expect identical twins in particular to possess inexplicable synergy from birth. Andrew and Brendan Bond are not those kind of twins.
The Bonds went to different high schools, attended colleges in different states, and eventually settled in different parts of the country. Their personalities arose so independently that though they’re physically nearly indistinguishable — even to their own father — their friends can instantly differentiate them. Yet for all their individuality and physical distance, they somehow both ended up as working musicians. Brendan played around Austin, performing with bands like A. Sinclair, Golden Dawn Arkestra, and backing Matthew Logan Vasquez of Delta Spirit; Andrew found success as part of the Brooklyn indie outfit Friends. They’d been in music their entire lives, yet they’d never once played together.
But twins can only escape the natural pull of kinship for so long.
When they sought to reconnect in their mid-twenties, speaking every other day, music was their one common ground. Although they professionally dabbled in varied styles, their personal tastes aligned remarkably well, something discovered through sharing their own songs with each other. “We lived apart for a long time but were still writing the same kinds of songs in the same vein,” says Brendan. “I don’t know what that means for nature versus nurture, but we certainly make a good case study. We spent so much time apart but both have this artistic desire for simplicity.”
Almost incidentally, sharing gave way to workshopping as the pair spent hours discussing one another’s compositions. “I’d say, ‘Hey check out this song.’ And he’d say, ‘That’s cool, but why do you have to do this part?’ Then I’d say, ‘Fuck you, man,'” Brendan laughs. “Then I’d call him the next day and say, ‘Alright I changed it, what do you think?'” Without necessarily meaning to, they’d become writing partners.
It wasn’t long before they chose to turn the accidental into the intentional. Andrew’s band had broken up and he was tired of New York. It had been more than a decade since the twins had lived in the same place, and with their relationship flourishing again, the timing seemed right to move to Austin. “We both liked each other’s songs,” recalls Andrew plainly. “So we said, ‘Alright, we might as well take advantage of the fact that we look the same and we have this connection.'”
Not that things click perfectly once they shared a city. They bickered over everything; Brendan describes their working relationship as “an identity crisis that never ends.” Thankfully, any sentimentality about their “reunion” was surpassed by devotion to their shared aesthetic and love of the craft. “I think that in our case – maybe with all identical twins – there’s really a connection that can never be diluted or broken, or a level of understanding that I think many people would find difficult to comprehend,” Andrew says of the collaboration. “The only emotion I think both of us feel being in this band and making this music is the joy that we get out of playing music with our friends, which of course include each other.”
Though absent for years, that intrinsic connection reveals itself on the duo’s debut EP “Just Kids”. These are tunes that harken back to the Golden Age of pop, where accessibility was key and, in Brendan’s words, “songs were the coin of the realm.” It’s there in the chilled out romance of “Dance Night”, the measured longing of “Oh, Home”, and the beach vibes of “Pool Boy”. Circumnavigating years of separation, the Bond Twins’ music reclaims a unity reserved for siblings as biologically close as they are, a genetic inevitability laid bare in their inexorable hooks.
Which is why, after all the distance and disagreements, they could only name themselves the Bond Twins. As Andrew puts it, “Why not just call it like it is? It fits with our personality — no bullshit.”
“We are who we are, and we’re the Bond Twins, and always will be.”