Singer/songwriter Adam Baker, guitarist Kenny Florence, bassist Mike Robinson, guitarist Zack Oden, pianist Anna Spence, and drummer Nick Radford create the orchestrated, expansive indie rock of North Carolina's Annuals. Hailing from Raleigh, three of the band's members ( Baker, Florence, and Robinson ) began playing together in various bands during childhood. With the addition of Oden, Spence, and Radford, the musical collective was properly born in 2004. Annuals' spunky energy drew influence from the likes of Mike Patton, Brian Wilson, Paul Simon, Radiohead, and Aphex Twin, and the burgeoning group began attracting an audience with its live show, during which the bandmates would often swap instruments.
Stateside performances with Tapes 'n Tapes coincided the release of Annuals' debut album, Be He Me, which hit shelves in October 2006 courtesy of Ace Fu Records. The album made a sizable splash in the blogosphere, where Web-based publications like Pitchfork and Stylus Magazine applauded the group's orchestral pop. Meanwhile, European magazines like NME helped Annuals build a fan base overseas. A series of EPs followed, including two releases in 2007 and another (the engaging Wet Zoo) in 2008. That same year also saw the release of Annuals' second full-length release, Such Fun, which featured cover art by Bob Ross and production by Jacquire King. Another EP, Sweet Sister, appeared in 2010, intended to tide fans over while the bandmates worked on their third studio album.