Editors' Notes “This record does feel like a new chapter for San Cisco,” Jordi Davieson tells Apple Music, “in that I've been able to go back and use songs that didn't quite fit San Cisco's mould. With this new direction, we’re able to bring them in and have them on the record, which I'm super proud of.” More than three years after The Water, the Fremantle indie trio’s fourth album is a focused and emotional effort that pushes past their own musical boundaries. It was mostly written and recorded between Fremantle and Mullumbimby, and was a deeply cathartic process for the singer and primary songwriter. “It’s built into me now,” Davieson says. “When I am feeling angsty about something or something's not sitting right, I write a song about it. It’s therapeutic. And the next level—playing that song to people who connect with it and are like, ‘Man, I know exactly how you feel’—helps as well. It helps me and it helps them.” Below, Davieson talks through each track on Between You and Me.

Skin
“It started off being a rather fast kind of poppy song, very West Coast, quite Fleetwood Mac-y. Josh [Biondillo, guitarist] and I were pretty excited about it, but Scarlett [Stevens, drummer] and our producer, Steven [Schram], were just like, ‘This is a bit trash. Don't really like it.’ So we slowed it right down and started working on it. I was looking through my notes—I'll write down these phrases that I think of, that I think are pretty special—and I came across ‘Your skin on my skin is what's been missing.’ So I put that into the chorus, and the whole song just came alive from there. It set the new benchmark for how good we need to be for every other song, because we really felt like it was us moving into a new realm of music.”

On the Line
“We went to Mullumbimby, we were writing and recording the whole record, and ‘On the Line’ and ‘Shine’ were just never quite right. They were acoustic versions, a full rock song—we were just throwing everything at them, and it never really got to a place where we were like, ‘Yeah, that's awesome.’ And then when we got back to Perth, we were like, ‘Let's have another go, because when I sit down and play this song on acoustic guitar by myself, I think it's a good song. So we should be able to turn it into a great band song.’ So we worked with some new people and took a whole different approach to it. And before we knew it, ‘On the Line’ was going to be our next single.”

Reasons
“The idea came from this recurring thing that I would see in people around me, who were really close to me, just holding on to this frustration and anger—whether it be with friends of theirs or with their partners or with these people around us. You should talk about that shit and share those feelings with someone else that you trust, because the more you hold on to it and think about it and mull over it, the more toxic and awful it gets.”

Messages
“‘Messages’ juxtaposes with ‘Reasons’ quite well. There's all these different phases to relationships. There’s that need for having open communication and admitting that everyone's just as flawed as everybody else and we can get through this, we've just got to talk it through. That's also kind of what ‘On the Line’ is about—deciding whether to talk about it and work through it or just leave it for dead because it's too fucked up.”

Shine
“This was one of the newer ones that we recorded back home here, in Freo. We teamed up with James Ireland from Pond—he's one of our mates and he's just a very well-trained musician who understands how music works on a very deep level. He’s an amazing pianist and a really good beatmaker and drummer. We played him the song on acoustic guitar. And it was like, ‘What should we do with it? We've tried so many different ways with it. What direction should we go?’ And he was like, ‘I reckon we get bleeps and bloops happening.’ So we got in the studio and recorded it like that.”

Alone
“I think it's my favourite song. ‘Alone’ was one of the first ones that I started writing for this record. I wasn’t in a new relationship, but I hadn't gone touring yet while in that relationship. And for the first time it felt like, ‘What? Is this going to be fine?’ Because it's a whole different dynamic to what we've known. It's pretty crazy meeting someone and being with them for six months at home like a normal person, and then leaving for three months and going on tour and being in different time zones and all that shit.”

When I Dream
“It came from the same time period as ‘Flaws’ and ‘Between You and Me’, and it lived on a hard drive for many years. We released it quite a while ago now, and it did really well as a stand-alone single, like surprisingly well. We weren't super confident about it. I think this song is sort of the porthole into this record. It showed us that we can write music like that and go down that road and our fans will come with us.”

Gone
“When I first wrote it, it sounded like a Johnny Cash song—that was the vibe. I wanted to paint a picture of that kind of toxic masculine vibe that dudes put out, like, ‘I don't feel anything, I don't need to feel anything. It's fine.’ But sometimes you hear people be like that and then, just for a split second, they say the most wise, sobering thing and then they go back to being a shut-down, emotionally vacant dude. And also, tied in with that, my jealousy of not being able to just shut off all my feelings and always feeling everything so much. I was trying to take on this character of someone who doesn't care and is fine without any love in their life, and they'll just truck along being this real bastard.”

Flaws
“‘Flaws’ is the first song I wrote after I broke up with my first girlfriend. We'd gone out for like four years. It was real gnarly, and I was like, ‘I just want to write a song that I could play to her that would just explain everything.’ It definitely takes me back there. I can still remember where I started writing it and where I was at. It is a real snapshot of that part of my life. And it hasn't been able to move on from that because I haven't had a chance to play it live to anyone.”

Tell Me When You Leave Tonight
“We were at home and my girlfriend was talking about her plans for the night—she was going somewhere and I was going somewhere else. And I was like, ‘Just tell me when you leave tonight and I'll come find you,’ and Josh was playing guitar in the living room from afar. And he starting singing, like, ‘Can you tell me when you leave tonight, let me know.’ And then she left and we wrote the song.”

Between You and Me
“I was cleaning my room and I found a bunch of letters from my ex-girlfriend. It was a lot. We were really romantic teenage kids. And so I did what everyone does when they're cleaning their room, to procrastinate, and I wrote a song. It was tying up all the loose ends of that relationship and was quite a therapeutic process. It’s a special thing, just to share that much of your life with someone. Even though you probably will never talk to them again, but they were everything for so long.”

SONG
Skin
1
4:26
 
On the Line
2
5:00
 
Reasons
3
3:12
 
Messages
4
3:19
 
Shine
5
2:34
 
Alone
6
3:39
 
When I Dream
7
3:11
 
Gone
8
3:06
 
Flaws
9
3:43
 
Tell Me When You Leave Tonight
10
3:28
 
Between You and Me
11
2:49
 

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