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Before they kicked against the decadent scene that ranked Oasis and Blur as supreme during the 1990s, the two sets of siblings who would later form Delays — Greg (vocals/guitar) and Aaron Gilbert (keyboards), and Rowley (drums) and Colin Fox (bass) — tried to make ends meet as a Brit-pop act. They formed Corky, and the band's acoustic pop was briefly popular in their hometown of Southampton, England. By 2001, Corky had gone by the wayside and the brotherly bunch had regrouped as Delays. Sun-soaked, '60s-tailored rock melodies developed over a few years' time, as did a fondness for Cocteau Twins-influenced keyboards and loops. Impressed with the emerging sound, Rough Trade's Geoff Travis attended one of the band's private shows in 2003 and offered Delays a deal. With Rough Trade's help, the group released two singles that same year and cracked the U.K. Top 40 with "Hey Girl."
Shows with the Thrills, Tim Burgess, and the Sleepy Jackson followed shortly thereafter, giving Delays a sweet spot among indie critics in Europe and America. Another high-charting single, "Long Time Coming," peaked at number 16 in January 2004, and the debut album Faded Seaside Glamour followed later that year. Sounding rather like the Hollies meeting the La's for a rainy Sunday drive while picking up the Cocteau Twins' Elizabeth Fraser for tea, the album did well in England and paved the way for a second record, You See Colours, which appeared in 2006. Delays changed labels before releasing 2008's Everything's the Rush, which was issued by Fiction/Polydor, and jumped ship once again in 2010, this time partnering with Lookout Mountain Records for the release of Star Tiger Star Ariel.