Reason #309 Why The ’80’s Didn’t Suck: Meat Is Murder
I was very disappointed with this album upon its release way back in 1985 for 2 reasons. The best song on the album (and, some would say in the entire Smiths discography), How Soon Is Now, had already appeared on the Hatful Of Hallow compilation I bought a few months prior. So, there was that ‘gyp’, and then there was the preachy title track, which bored the hell out of me (and didn’t do much to erase the ‘mope rock’ tag their detractors had labeled them with from the get-go); and, aside from the amazing Headmaster Ritual and fun rockabilly romp Rusholme Ruffians, the rest of the songs seemed to really pale in comparison with those on the debut and HOH. I did, however, love the cover.
Fast forward a couple of decades, and upon revisiting I still hate the title track! But the remainder of the tracks have definitely grown on me. I Want The One I Can’t Have, That Joke Isn’t Funny Anymore and Barbarism Begins At Home all belong in any discussion of “Best Smiths Songs”.
Even a sub-par Smiths album is worth your while, but if you’re new to the band I wouldn’t recommend starting here. Either HOH or the self titled debut would be good choices, but your best bet as an entry point will always be The Queen Is Dead.