Manchester indie rock quintet Polytechnic had its embryonic stages in Devon, England, where school friends Dylan Giles (vocals, guitar) and Yuri Caul (bass) were experimenting with Krautrock and going under the name the Conversation (the name was taken from the 1974 film). The two played some gigs in Manchester before adding drummer Tim Warren in 2004. Shedding the Krautrock sound, they added guitarist Denny Hilton, who had played in a backing band for Can vocalist Damo Suzuki. Losing their original band name to another group, the newly named Polytechnic caught the attention of Radio 1's Steve Lamacq, who aired their demo. Keyboardist Peet Earnshaw was added in time for opening slots with the Subways, the Strokes, and the Breeders as well as tours with the Longcut and Doves. In early 2006, Polytechnic signed with Transgressive Records, who issued several singles, the first available by April. Shatterproof Records handled the debut full-length Down Til Dawn, released in spring 2007.