Beach Fossils formed in 2009 as a vehicle for the reverb-heavy solo recordings of guitarist/vocalist Dustin Payseur. Bassist John Pena and guitarist Christopher Burke were brought into Beach Fossils' lineup later that year, after Payseur had single-handedly put together the recordings that would comprise the group's first album. Beach Fossils' debut 7" single, Daydream/Desert Sand, was released on Captured Tracks in February 2010; their self-titled album was released on the same label later that year. Pena and Payseur worked together on the group's next release, 2011's What a Pleasure EP, before Pena left to focus on his own group Heavenly Beat. The next Beach Fossils album featured drummer Tommy Gardner and production from the Men's Ben Greenberg. Clash the Truth was issued in early 2013 on Captured Tracks.
Payseur involved the other members of the band in the writing process, with both bassist Jack Doyle Smith and guitarist Tommy Davidson contributing ideas. The record was made in various locales in New York City and Los Angeles, including engineer Jonathan Rado's home studio and a cabin in Upstate New York, and featured guest vocals from Slowdive's Rachel Goswell and Cities Aviv. Somersault was released in early 2017 on Bayonet Records, a label Payseur started with his wife Kate Garcia.