Neneh Cherry's Blank Project album finds her musically mourning her mother, Moki Cherry, who died in 2009. Following the passing of her mom, Cherry turned to music to heal herself. "I'm still here, I keep you deep inside," she breathes on this cut. "That song is about growing up, coming to New York, and losing my mother," she told Spin magazine. "It's dedicated to her and my daughters."
"I always found very strong images for my songwriting in New York," Cherry added. "Yesterday I was sitting on the train and thinking about the presence of everybody in New York. What's sometimes really overwhelming in Sweden is the uniformity. People kind of disappear by all looking the same and wearing the same clothes. There are a lot of great individuals, but it can become a very blank and bleak picture. 'Across the Water' is a tribute to a feeling I always have when I come here."