Delta formed in 1993 from the ashes of cult Sarah Records indie band The Sea Urchins, the core lineup consisting of brothers James and Patrick Roberts on guitar and vocals. A 10" for Che and three singles for Dishy Records followed before the band signed to the Acid Jazz Records subsidiary Focus, which effectively put the bandís career on hold for almost five years, with no material being released. They eventually broke free of the contract and returned to Dishy, who put out a tremendously received compilation of B-sides and demos called Laughing Mostly in 1998. The Guardian proclaimed it to be a work of genius, describing it as "the last great album of the millennium." This momentum allowed them to forge ahead and release Slippiní Out in 2000, which was lauded by the NME for its "songs of aching wonder" and named as one of that magazineís Top-50 albums for the year (#22). Itís successor Hard Light (2002) was similarly championed, the Sunday Times keenly observing that "in an era when Coldplayís oops-Iíve-just-grazed-my-knee melancholy dominates, this kind of authentic, feverish hurt on display here is irresistible."