Doubly happy

Doubly happy
Benji (left) and Joel Madden (right) of The Madden Brothers.

As members of US pop-punk band Good Charlotte, identical twin brothers Joel and Benji Madden get equal fan attention.

But when it comes to their love lives, the younger twin has been more in the news.

Joel is blissfully married to socialite, fashion designer and reality TV star Nicole Richie, with whom he has two children.

But since it was revealed in June that Benji is dating Hollywood actress Cameron Diaz, he finds himself under the glare of the spotlight. Although the couple have been together for only two months, there has been talk of wedding bells.

Is this Madden twin, previously linked to the likes of English singer Eliza Doolittle, US socialite-DJ Paris Hilton and English-born Australian singer Sophie Monk, really counting down to his last days as a single man?

LATEST RELATIONSHIP

One thing is for sure, Benji, 35, is over the moon in his latest relationship.

"Well, it's easy to see, isn't it?" he told The New Paper in a telephone interview from Los Angeles on Friday.

Late last month, he was pictured with Diaz, 41, on a romantic getaway on a yacht costing US$633,000 (S$790,000) per week, sailing along the coasts of Italy and France.

They kissed, cuddled and held hands, making no secret of their romance.

The US star is not the only thing keeping him busy these days.

Benji and Joel are heavily promoting their upcoming first record as duo The Madden Brothers. It is called Greetings From California, and is due for release next month.

The album will be split into two "sides" - one with an "upbeat, sunny pop-rock" sound, and the other with a more old-school vibe.

Since their formation earlier this year, the duo's first single We Are Done has hit No. 1 in Australia and New Zealand.

WORLD TOUR PLANS

They have also announced an Australian tour starting in October, and have plans for a world tour "in every corner of the planet" next year.

Although the new project took off only this year, the Madden twins have been working on it since 2012.

It kicked off with a meeting in Miami with Grammy-winning producer Pharrell Williams.

"We decided to seek our buddy Pharrell to get his take on this idea. He's a guy we like to talk music with. He's very passionate, kind and inspiring," Benji said.

At the end of the meeting, the trio co-wrote two songs - California Rain and Good Gracious Abbey - both on the upcoming record.

The Madden Brothers will mark nearly two decades of musical collaboration between Benji and Joel since Good Charlotte formed in the late 90s.

The band, also comprising bassist Paul Thomas, guitarist/keyboardist Billy Martin and drummer Dean Butterworth, released five studio albums.

Asked if he feared the fate of the Gallagher brothers (of Brit rock act Oasis), whose split was acrimonious, and the Jonas Brothers, Benji was unfazed.

He said of his brother: "We work really well together, everything just works when we're together. There is never a fear of us breaking up. It has never crossed my mind," he said.

"We had super strong instincts with this one. Yes, I guess you can say it was a good call," Benji added.

ashikinr@sph.com.sg

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