You may recognize the names Megan and Liz from the duo’s success in the pop genre; however, in 2014, they made the trek back to Nashville to pursue the music that really spoke to them – country. In June 2014, the twins released their debut country EP, Simple Life, which showcased a seamless transition into the genre.
Following Simple Life, the duo released “That Ghost,” a single that garnered a Teen Choice Award nomination (Choice Country Song). All their success, however, hasn’t come effortlessly. After the closing of their LA label, Megan and Liz moved to Nashville with nothing on the horizon but a dream, working hard and receiving little in return. The twins have proven successful in persevering through difficult times.
I had the chance to catch up with Megan and Liz to discuss their new EP, DEUX, available March 11. DEUX (the French word for “two”) provides a second chance for Megan and Liz to emerge in the industry, as well as introduces a second version of them to audiences. This EP is literally their blood, sweat, and tears. According to Liz, “This is the first project that we’ve entirely funded ourselves, we hand selected the producers, the songs, the hair and makeup, the pictures, the photographer, everything. This is us. This is who we are.” With all of the hardships that they’ve faced, they’ve found themselves. Their challenges have shaped them as young women and as musicians.
The debut single from the EP, “Big Kids,” which Radio Disney has already been spinning, is a classic song about growing up. The chorus characterizes the song, beginning “We’re the ones growing up, we’re the ones getting out,” and the verses are all about the daily struggles of being a young adult.
“This EP definitely has more maturity than our past music,” Megan said. “We’re not 18 anymore! We’re 23. We’re young adults. Our values are still the same, we’re just getting older. Yes, I’d still love to be someone’s princess charming, but I’m probably not going to sing about it.” Liz added, “We have adult relationships, and adult struggles. It’s not just breaking up with a stupid boy, it’s breaking up with the stupid boy you made actual real life plans and choices with, and how to handle it like adults. It’s a whole new level of emotion that I think comes with just getting older.”
The other tracks are a mix of country-pop hits and sincere ballads, all of which are thematically cohesive, containing lyrics about growing up, maturing, and the learning that comes with both. “I had too much fun picking the 7 songs…I love anything that fits together like a puzzle, and this EP seemed to do that,” Megan said.
“Home Is You” is a ballad about the twins’ relationship and also the most challenging song on the EP for Liz to write. “[‘Home Is You’] was a song that we felt needed to be done for a while, so I felt in some ways there was a lot of pressure on it, but the reason it was hard to write was because we had so much content about our lives as sisters that it was hard to narrow down what should actually be in the song,” she said. “Drive,” an upbeat song about how driving without a destination is one of the best ways to cure restless thoughts and confusion, was the hardest song to write for Megan. She recalled, “It was one of the first songs we wrote when we moved back to Nashville, and I remember my spirits were so low. I was so discouraged in myself as a songwriter and walking out of that room that day after we wrote that song gave me that glimmer of light I needed to keep pushing forward.”
“Just a Name” is a jam about an ex’s name no longer meaning anything to you, and it’s one of the most special songs on DEUX for Megan. “[This one] really was about how when you find that right person, the person you thought was your person in the past is nothing more to you than just a name. When that realization comes to you, it’s the most liberating feeling in the world,” she explained. “White T-Shirt” is a beautiful song about the perfect kind of love that everyone dreams of finding. It’s about meeting your person, and knowing it, and it happens to be the most special song on the EP to Liz. “I am such a believer in that ‘stupid, inconvenient, can’t-live-without-each-other kind of love’ (quoting Sex and The City – it’s a lifestyle),” she said. “I feel like this song is for all the hopeless romantics, myself included.”
“That Ghost,” as mentioned before, is a haunting ballad about worrying that the ghosts from your past will come back during a new relationship. The song’s creation led to inspiration for the project as a whole. According to Liz, “It was the first one that ignited the sound. It was the song that we were like OH, this is what it’s supposed to be.” Lastly, “He’s Not Him” is an optimistic song about new relationships, and remembering not to compare them to past ones. It’s an excellent reminder that your new relationship is with a different person, and things are going to be different with that new person. “We always liked that song because sometimes relationships suck, and you don’t realize that until you’re in a good one,” Megan said.
Overall, DEUX, is a big deal for Megan and Liz. This EP serves as an introduction for the young women that they have become. Throughout all of the obstacles that life has thrown at Megan and Liz, they’ve discovered who they really are as people and as musicians. For Liz, “The main goal [for the EP] is for everyone to get a feel of who we are and who we want to be.” As for the listener’s takeaway, Megan says, “The emotional roller coaster we went on while recording/writing this EP was a big one. From 21-23, we learned a lot about life and ourselves. I want people to connect with at least one song on this EP…No matter what you’re going through in life, I want one of these songs to be relevant.”