The members of the Early November were young enough to have grown up with the Drive-Thru Records sound, a formula that incorporated sensitive emo, pop, and punk revivalist amalgams with a bit of post-hardcore grit. The band first emerged in 2000, fighting to secure shows in their busy South Jersey scene while hoping to land a deal with Drive-Thru. One way or another, their wish came true. Label figureheads Richard and Stefanie Reines signed vocalist/guitarist "Ace" (Arthur) Enders, bassist Sergio Anello, drummer Jeff Kummer, and guitarist Joseph Marro in early 2002 on the strengths of their demo and a solid MP3.com buzz, and by November 2002 the band had made its label debut with the For All of This EP. Promising appearances on the Warped Tour's Drive-Thru stage that summer spread the word, and by 2003, anticipation for an Early November full-length was brimming.