"Louder Than Bombs"|
The original edition of "Louder Than Bombs" is the American one. The Canadian edition was based on it, just like the British edition which came the following year. The latter then served as a model for further pressings such as ones from France or Israel, and perhaps also Japan.
USA 2-LP [Sire 9 25569-1]
The front of the American 2-LP set shows the usual LP artwork while the back shows the upper half of the same Shelagh Delaney image, with track listing, extensive credits and Sire and Rough Trade logos printed in brown (view left). The sleeve is gatefold, it opens to show the lyrics to all the vocal songs as well as the complete Shelagh Delaney image in black and white (view left). The records are slipped in plain brown paper inner sleeves with label copyright and catalogue number printed in white in a corner on one side. These inner sleeves are quite thin and are often ripped at the seams nowadays if the records have been taken in and out more than just a few times. The labels are the classic yellow Sire ones. The version of the Sire logo on them is the one on which "SIRE" appears underneath.
USA 2-LP [Columbia House W1 25569; record club edition]
The Columbia Record Club LP edition is very similar to the standard edition. It differs by slight corrections (mentioning the involvement of Columbia Records) made in the credits on the back of the sleeve, the spine, inside the gatefold sleeve and on the labels. The most notable difference is the Sire logo on the labels which has "Sire" written at the 2 o'clock position around it instead of underneath.
USA cassette [Sire 9 25569-4]
The cassette artwork has its own cropped version of the Shelagh Delaney artwork (view left). The spine has release information in white over orange and the back has the track listing and credits in black, as well as a barcode in a white box. The insert unfolds three times for the lyrics up to "You Just Haven't Earned It Yet Baby" printed in black over white. The reverse of the insert has the rest of the lyrics, plus credits. The case is all transparent (no black plastic section). The cassettes are made of clear plastic with silver labels.
USA cassette [Columbia House W4-25569; record club edition]
The insert of this record club edition differs from that of the the retail one detailed above by the correction of the catalogue number on the insert's spine, different credits at the bottom of the back flap, corrected catalogue number on the reverse and absence of the Sire address also on the reverse. The cassette is made of clear plastic with pale grey text printed directly onto it: album id and track listing at the top, Sire and Rough Trade logos and catalogue number on the left, credits at the bottom.
USA CD [Sire 9 25569-2]
This was the first album by the Smiths to be made available on compact disc in the USA. There are at least three different American cd editions, not counting the record club issue listed next. All feature the cd artwork on the front (view left). All seem to have the same booklet (confirmation about this would be appreciated). Everything in the booklet is found in black and white. It opens on a page of titles, followed by the lyrics to the 23 vocal songs. The back of the booklet uses the same image as background as the cd tray inlay, but over that are printed extensive credits, compact disc technology information, Sire and Rough Trade logos and catalogue number. The labels for the three editions have the same typeset with minor content differences (see below). The other differences are found on the back. The order in which the different editions are described below reflects the most likely production order.
- DADC edition
This is the most likely original edition. The back features a paragraph on the preservation of sound quality in the transfer from an analog recording to the digital compact disc. The cd surface differs from the next two versions by the number DIDX 1688 above the Sire catalogue number, and "Mfg by DADC" in the credits above that.
- in-between edition
For a lack of a better name I am calling this an in-between edition because the back is like that of the DADC edition above, while the cd is like the later edition described below.
- current edition
The sound quality preservation paragraph is dropped from the back, but the rest there remains the same. The final line in the credits on the cd surface is changed to "Mfg by WEA Manufacturing" and the DIDX catalogue number is dropped from above the Sire catalogue number.
USA CD [BMG Direct 9 25569-2/D 102695; record club edition]
This alternate record club edition is modelled after the version labelled above as 'current edition' (see above for description of stock cd variations). It shows the usual cd artwork on the front. The barcode on the back was removed and in its white box are found the BMG Direct catalogue number and address. BMG Direct credits and catalogue number were added to the left of the band name at the top of the disc. Finally, the BMG Direct catalogue number was added in black in the bottom left corner of the back of the booklet.
USA CD longbox
Until about 1992-1993, compact discs were sold in the USA in tall picture boxes. Many were destroyed after purchase, but some were salvaged and ended up in fans collections. These boxes featured their own variation/cropping of the album's artwork. In the case of "Louder Than Bombs", the front shows the full Shelagh Delaney image. Besides the expected title, band name, Sire logo and compact disc logo, the words "2 record set on 1 specially-priced disc" also appear at the top. The back shows a closeup of the upper part over which is printed the track listing, the full album credits and a barcode, View front and back. The spines are orange with release identification in black.
USA music book
This is the most sought after music book for the Smiths, not only because it features 24 songs, but mostly because it includes transcriptions for every instrument (unlike British music books which are only for piano? guitar?). This spiral-bound book now sells for good money, even when in used and battered condition. View here.
USA CD [2012 reissue on Sire/Rhino R2 25569]
USA 2-LP promo [Sire 9 25569-1]
The promo edition of the American LP is a stock one with a promo warning stamped in gold ink on the front of the sleeve. The white and orange "Specially priced two-record set" sticker which is usually found on the stock LP's wrapper was affixed directly onto the sleeve of the promo (because promos were never sealed). Some came with the press kit described below.
USA press kit
The "Louder Than Bombs" press kit includes a 2-page press release on yellow Sire paper and a press photo, both in US letter format. The press photo actually shows 2 photos: one of Morrissey in front of a poster of the Queen Is Dead tour, with hands over heart, and the other of the band revisiting the Salford Lads Club in winter, as there is snow on the ground (view here). The latter photo is from the same shoot that supplied the one used on the USA promo 12" of "Shoplifters Of The World Unite" (see artwork in left menu and description below).
USA promo 12" [Sire PRO-A-2712]
The album was promoted in the USA with the help of a specially designed promo 12" of "Shoplifters Of The World Unite" featuring only that song on both sides. The front artwork is an orange tinted photo of the band in front of the Salford Lads Club, in winter (view left). The back is all white and grey, without any text or photos. The labels are classic yellow Sire ones. They are identical except for "Side 1" and "Side 2" because the content is the same on both sides.
USA cassette promo [Sire 9 25569-4]
The release of this album was also more limitedly promoted in the USA with the help of a cassette which surely served advance promotional purposes. The insert is a generic Warner Bros one. The front has a typewritten track listing and printed "Warner Bros Records", as well as a Dolby logo. The spine has "The Smiths" and the catalogue number typewritten, with a printed WB logo. The back features a printed promo warning and a telephone number for WEA Manufacturing. The cassette is made of clear plastic. It has silver paper labels with generic printed WEA Manufacturing info as well as "The Smiths" and "WB-25569" in typewriting at the top. The case is all made of clear plastic.
USA promo flat
Promo flats were usually sent to retail at the time of release of an album for instore promotion. They are made of thick card and are the size of a LP. One side of the "Louder Than Bombs" flat shows the LP artwork. The other is brown with white text: "The Smiths" at the top, "Louder Than Bombs" in the middle underneath a small orange tinted reproduction of the full Shelagh Delaney photo, and "Specially-priced two-record set / also available on cassette and compact disc" at the bottom. The reverse also has very small credits and Sire and Rough Trade logos (view here).
USA 53cm x 84cm promo poster (21" x 33")
This promotional poster shows a unique variation on the album artwork, with small Sire logo in the bottom right corner. View here.
View here (better image needed).
USA LP test pressing [Specialty 125569]
Test pressings of this album have made it into the hands of lucky collectors. They are circulated in white die-cut sleeves showing the Specialty Records Corporation labels. These are off-white, they feature the company's logo at the top and printed lines underneath to be filled in with release information. In this particular case the handwritten information is the date ("3-5-87"), label ("WB"), artist ("The Smiths"), matrix number ("Asr6") and catalogue number ("125569").
USA gold record
An official RIAA gold record of "Louder Than Bombs" has made it into the hands of collectors. It shows a gold version of the USA LP with a RIAA plaque and logo over the bottom of the record. A reproduction of the front artwork is found at the bottom between a compact disc and a gold cassette of the album. USA gold awards of "Louder Than Bombs" with just an information plaque between a reproduction of the front artwork and a RIAA hologram are apparently fakes.
USA proof LP sleeve
Printers proofs showing the front and back of the gatefold USA LP sleeve, with registration and proofing bars, have made it to the collectors market. There doesn't seem to be any difference between the artwork shown on them.
USA proof LP inner sleeve
This is a very basic printer's proof of the LP inner sleeve, which means it is all brown. This has been seen for sale with the proof of the picture sleeve described above.
"Louder Than Bombs" was made available for the first time in Australia (other than on import) in 1988 when the complete Smiths catalogue was reissued by Festival Records. In 1987 CBS had passed on releasing the album, preferring to make "The World Won't Listen" a double-LP edition featuring all the material from both albums, with a few minor changes. It is possible that "These Things Take Time" and "Back To The Old House" on this Australian Festival edition were replaced by their Peel sessions version (as on "Hatful Of Hollow") and "Stretch Out And Wait" by its alternate version (as on "The World Won't Listen"). This needs confirmation.
Australia 2-LP [Festival L70269/70]
The front of the Australian vinyl edition shows the usual LP artwork. The sleeve is gatefold and the back shows the usual artwork, track listing and credits, plus additional Festival Records credits and logo. This text on the back is closer to golden tan than the original dark brown. The records are slipped inside thick round bottom anti-static sleeves instead of the usual brown paper inner sleeves. The labels are red with black text and a Rough Trade circle logo at the top. The package also includes a 2-sided illustrated paper insert advertising "The Smiths' Collection" (Festival's reissue collection).
Australia 2-cassette [Festival C70269/70]
Festival decided that the cassette edition of the album would be split over two tapes. Some copies are found in a double cassette case, others come in two separate, individual cases. In the latter case, it is unclear if the two cassettes were sold separately. There are two different inserts, even in the double-sized case situation. The front of both inserts shows the LP artwork over a black background (view left). One says "Part one" at the top, while the other says "Part two". The spines are black with "The Smiths" in white and title, catalogue number, "Part One"/"Part Two" and Rough Trade logo in orange. The back is black with orange track listing, Festival logo and credits. Each insert has one extra panel on which is printed the track listing and extensive credits in black over white. The credits are continued on the panels' reverse side. The cassettes are white with black text printed directly onto them.
Australia 2-CD [Festival D70269/70]
The Festival compact disc edition is very much sought after by collectors because it is the only version of "Louder Than Bombs" split over two cds. Unfortunately, as with all other Festival cds, the artwork is of very substandard quality. The case is a thick double jewelcase, the type that is more than twice the thickness of a regular jewelcase. The front insert shows the LP cover between black borders (view left). The spines are black with white text. The back shows the track listing, credits and various logos in black over orange, in a very plain and unrelated font. The booklet is actually just a folded insert with minimal credits and the uncropped Shelagh Delaney photo inside, with more credits on the back. If it wasn't lost, the set also includes a 2-sided black and white flyer titled "The Smiths' Collection", advertising the catalogue numbers of the six Smiths albums being reissued by Festival. The discs are plain silver (uncoloured) with black text printed directly onto them, in the same style as other Festival reissues. The name of the band at the top is in the same font as on the album "Strangeways, Here We Come". The album title is printed beneath, and the track listing is split on the left and right sides of each disc. There is a Rough Trade logo at the 4 o'clock position.
Australia CD [WEA 1993 reissue 450993833-2]
The packaging and content of the 1993 cd reissue on WEA parallels its European counterpart described below. The only difference is found in the licensing credits on the disc, which should be orange or pink (confirmation/detailed information needed). A second variation appeared later on the market. The disc in this case is black, it also lacks the "Made In Germany" line top left, there's a "Digital Audio Technologies Australia" logo at the 7 o'clock position and the credits around the bottom edge are silver and mention Warner Music Australia.
Australia 2-LP promo [Festival L70269/70]
A very limited number of the stock Festival LP with "Media DJ COPY" promo sticker on the label were distributed to promote Festival's reissue programme.
Australia 2-LP test pressing [Festival L70269/70]
Test pressings of the Festival 2-LP set has made it into the hands of collectors. These have plain white labels and are slipped inside plain white card sleeves.
Brazil 2-LP [Stiletto 270.4001]
There's no surprise with the Brazilian LP edition of "Louder Than Bombs". The front shows the usual LP artwork. The back shows the usual track listing and credits in very dark brown or black. There's a big Stiletto logo in the top right corner and a big white stripe at the very bottom with additional Brazilian credits. The sleeve is gatefold. The records are slipped inside white paper inner sleeves instead of the usual brown ones. The labels are white with black text and a Stiletto logo at the top.
Brazil cassette [Stiletto ??]
The existence of this item is unconfirmed. Information needed.
Brazil CD [Stiletto 498.005]
The Brazil cd shows the LP artwork on the front, with a small Stiletto logo in a white space in the top right corner. There is no booklet; the front artwork is displayed on a simple insert with nothing but white on its flipside. The back is closer to the UK cd back, with the track listing taking up less space. A black Stiletto logo is found in the top right corner, and more logos and credits at the bottom. The disc is silver with black text printed directly onto it: band name and title at the top, track listing at the bottom, and logos left and right of centre.
Brazil 2-LP promo [Stiletto 270.4001]
Stock copies were made into promotional ones by being stamped in red with the warning "Especial para promoçao invendavel amostra gratis tributada" on the labels. The backs of the sleeve were stamped in gold with a round BMG logo and the words "amostra invendável".
Canada 2-LP [Sire 25569-1]
The Canadian LP set is, as expected, packaged just like the American edition (described above) it is based on. The sleeve is gatefold, the inner sleeves are brown paper ones and the records have yellow Sire labels. The only differences are the Sire Canada credits on the back of the sleeve and on the labels instead of the American Sire ones, and the fact that the text on the spine is printed in black instead of white.
Canada 2-LP [Columbia House W1 25569; record club edition]
This record club edition differs from the standard retail one described above by a few details here and there on the packaging. The front of the sleeve was not changed. The barcode on the back was removed, leaving an empty white box. The small credits at the very bottom on the back were adapted for Columbia House, and "CRC" was added beneath the two logos in the bottom right corner. The catalogue number on the spine was replaced with the Columbia House order number and catalogue number. The sleeve is still gatefold, the only change inside it is the addition of the Columbia House catalogue number in the bottom right corner on the right side. The latter number and "CRC" were added in white next to the copyright in the top left corner on one side of each one of the inner sleeves. Changes made to the labels are the presence of the Columbia House catalogue number and "CRC" on the right side above the side number, and the change of the credit around the outer edge to one mentioning Columbia House.
Canada cassette [Sire 25569-4]
The front artwork is the same as the American cassette artwork (view left). However the spine and back are black instead of orange. The back is full and has two oval-shaped holes for the case's plastic prongs to go through. It features the album's track listing, a barcode and some credits. Information on the insert's inside content is needed. The cassette is made of black plastic with text printed in silver on it.
Canada CD [Sire CD-25569]
Some aspects of the Canadian cd are identical to its American counterpart, others are completely different. The front artwork is the same. The back is almost like the early American version, including an information paragraph on sound quality preservation, but the credits paragraph underneath was changed to one from Sire Canada, and the Canadian catalogue number was added in the top left corner. The booklet is identical to the American one except for the correction of the catalogue number on its back and the removal of the line "Printed in USA". The cd surface is silver with black text printed onto it, as in the USA, but the layout is completely different, with track listing split above and underneath the center, the Sire logo on the left and the compact disc logo and catalogue number on the right.
Canada 2-LP promo [Sire 25569-1]
Promotion of this album in Canada was done via stock copies of the LP stamped in gold ink on the sleeve. While the stamp is found on the front of the sleeve in the USA, it is always on the back for Canadian releases. The Canadian promo stamp also has the particularity of being bilingual, the promo warning appears in both English and French, the country's two official languages.
After purchasing the rights to the Smiths catalogue, Warner released two best ofs then in 1993 proceeded with the reissue of all the albums over the territories they controlled. However "Louder Than Bombs" was not part of this initial plan and was only re-released in 1994 on cassette and cd. This new 'international' edition was "made by WEA in Germany manufacturing Europe" as the credits state and was sold mostly in Europe and in some Latin American countries. The design of the two formats was based partly on the original British and American designs. The WEA cds and cassettes were reissued again in 1995 when the "Singles" compilation came out, but these repressings are identical to the original editions except for a yellow exclamation mark sticker on the front of the case marking them as half-price reissues.
Europe CD [WEA 450993833-2]
The packaging of the 1993 cd reissue is based on the original cd edition. The front is identical, and the back is closer to the original American back than the British one because of the size of the track listing, the presence of credits to the right and the barcode being in a white box in the top right corner. Information about the booklet content is needed. The most noticeable difference is the cd surface which is orange-red with white text. The existence of alternate variations is suspected. The price code for France on the back may be "France WE833" on some copies and "WE835" on others.
Europe cassette [WEA 450993833-4]
Information about this item is needed.
France CD [Virgin 30261]
The design of the French cd was modeled on the British one described below, perhaps because the latter item was actually pressed in France. The front shows the usual cd artwork. The back is like the British one, with additional Virgin logo next to the compact disc logo, and Virgin catalogue number and price code under the barcode. The booklet is the same with the exception of the catalogue number on its back which was changed for the French one. The cd surface has the same text layout, but the text in question is black instead of orange, and includes the mandatory SACEM (copyright control) logo. Two disc variations have actually been spotted. In one case a line at the bottom states "Made
in France by PDO" and in the other "Made in France by PRS".
Indonesia cassette [Golden Peacock 2264 "Louder Than Bombs vol 2"]
The packaging of this unlicensed item is a bit of a surprise. The front artwork shows the full uncropped Shelagh Delaney image (as seen inside the gatefold LP, see left), but tinted in blue. This was done in a style very similar to Morrissey's although he obviously had nothing to do with it. Underneath the name of the band and the album title on the front appear the band credits, then "VOL. 2", which implies the existence of a first volume although none has ever been reported. The cassette itself is made of black plastic and has white, black and orange Peacock labels.
Israel cassette [Rough Trade ROUG 255-4]
The insert of the Israel cassette is exactly the same as in the UK, but some copies have a round yellowish-beige "Double Play" sticker on it. The cassette is tan-grey with black text printed onto it. This text was kept to a minimum: band name, album title, logos, catalogue number and side number. There is no track listing or credit, only "see inlay card for details".
Italy CD [Rough Trade CDROUG255]
This is one of four very rare Smiths compact discs to have been released in Italy, presumably all at about the same time as the "Rank" album. The packaging is very similar to that of the UK cd. The front artwork is identical. The main difference is the catalogue number printed on the rear, on the spine, and on the back of the booklet. The rest of the booklet looks identical to its UK counterpart but it may have been printed on thinner paper (to be confirmed). The disc is different. The text is simply printed in black over the basic silver surface. It features a Rough Trade 'circle' logo at the top, track listing to the right, and logos, catalogue number and credits on the left and bottom.
Japan CD [1990 first release on Victor VICP-43]
"Louder Than Bombs" was not released in Japan until 1990. This original Japanese edition appears to be the most commonly traded one nowadays. The front shows the usual compact disc artwork. The back is the expected variation on the usual back, with slightly different credits to account for the involvement of Victor Records. The cd surface is in the same style as the other Smiths albums released and/or reissued by Victor in 1987 and 1990, with a Rough Trade logo in a circle at the top and the track listing at the bottom. The obi is silver with black text. It shows release information on the front and track listing, some credits and barcode on the back. The booklet's liner notes include a list of all the concerts the Smiths played while they were together, from the debut at the Ritz in 1982 to the farewell gig at Brixton Academy in 1986. The last page has the album's track listing in English and Japanese, printed in black over orange.
Japan CD [1993 reissue on WEA WMC5-547]
This new Japanese edition was released by WEA who had just purchased the rights to the complete Smiths catalogue the year before. It was modelled on its European counterpart and the packaging is superior to that of the original Victor release. Unlike the European edition, the Japanese cd has the barcode on the back of the obi instead of the cd tray inlay. The obi is light blue-green and beige with a blue "Smiths Original Catalogue" crest common to all re-releases in the series. Its back covers the complete backspace and displays over a beige background "The Smiths Original Catalogue", an illustrated list of the eight albums being reissued by WEA. The disc is burnt orange with silver text: credits and logos on the left, track listing on the right. The cd tray is made of white plastic. Information about the booklet is needed.
Japan CD [1995 reissue on WEA WPCR-306]
In parallel with the release of the "Singles" compilation, another reissue programme of the Smiths back catalogue was put together by WEA in Japan. This 1995 budget reissue is very similar to the one from just 2 years prior. The most obvious changes were the white obi with red ignited 'Hot price!' bomb common to all the releases in the series and an additional "Smiths Original Catalogue" insert inside. The cd tray is still made of white plastic.
Japan CD [2006 reissue on WEA WPCR-12443]
The most recent reissue programme of the complete Smiths catalogue in Japan dates back to 2006 when all the albums were re-released in mini-replicas of the original LP sleeves. These are slightly bigger than the typical size of a compact disc. In the case of "Louder Than Bombs", the original UK LP pressing served as a model for everything with the exception of the obi which, exceptionally for this album only, is not based on any earlier obi. It is orange, has barely any front, and the text on the spine and back is white. The front of the sleeve shows the LP artwork instead of the cd variation. In most cases there is a maroon and white round sticker on the front which presumably gives release information or praises the album. The back is like the usual USA and UK LP backs, with track listing in the middle (separated into 'Side One' to 'Side Four') and a big block of credits at the bottom. The sleeve is gatefold and its inside content is lyrics and the full uncropped Shelagh Delaney photo in black and white, exactly like the original LP sleeve. The inner sleeve is made of brown paper just like the original LP ones, but the catalogue number in the top right corner on one side was obviously corrected. The cd is actually also slipped inside a plastic film inner sleeve (the round bottom variety), which is in turn slipped inside the brown paper inner sleeve. A white paper booklet featuring the lyrics in English and Japanese and what looks like a bio is also found inside.The cd surface is based on the original UK LP labels, so it is black with grey text.
Japan CD promo [1990 first release on Victor VICP-43]
The original release of the album was promoted with copies of the cd with "sample" stamped around the center and a promo sticker affixed to the obi.
Japan CD promo [1993 reissue on WEA WMC5-547]
The Japanese promo cd is a stock copy with a white and red promo sticker on the back of the obi and promo text printed on the cd's inner ring.
Japan CD promo [1995 reissue on WEA WPCR-306]
A promo counterpart to the 1995 cd edition is expected, but none has ever been reported for this title. Please write if you have any information.
Japan CD promo [2006 reissue on WEA WPCR-12443]
Promo versions of this edition of "Louder Than Bombs" are stock copies with an additional white sticker with red text affixed to the back of the obi and 'sample loaned' etched on the cd's inner ring.
Philippines cassette [Backbeat ??;"tape one" tracks 1-12]
Philippines cassette [Backbeat ??; "tape two" tracks 13-24]
The album was split over two cassettes in the Philippines. Each one shows on the front the usual cd artwork above a black section in which the track listing is printed in orange. The track listing is repeated on the back alongside logos, again in orange over black. The inserts only include credits on the flipside, in black and white. The cassettes are made of black plastic. The labels on them are also black and feature the respective sides' track listing, release information and logos in white. The cases are all made of clear plastic.
Saudi Arabia cassette [Thomsun Original EN-1656; part 1, tracks 1-12]
Saudi Arabia cassette [Thomsun Original EN-1657; part 2, tracks 13-24]
The album was also split over two cassettes in Saudi Arabia. Each one shows on the front the usual LP artwork, with "The Smiths" in red and "Louder Than Bombs" in green above and the Thomsun Original logo in pink underneath. The first one says "Part I" in black at the bottom while the second one says - can you guess? - "Part II". The track listing is given on the back, which is light blue just like the spine. Information about the insert content is needed. The cassettes are black Maxell C-46s with black, white and green labels featuring a printed track listing at the top.
Taiwan cassette [Crystal ROUGHC255]
Two different cassette editions have come out of Taiwan, both obviously unlicensed. The only difference between them is the colour of the labels on the cassette, white in one case, yellow in the other. Both variations have the same text on them and both cassettes are made of black plastic. Both show a cropped version of the usual artwork on the front (a close-up of Shelagh Delaney's face) over a pink background, underneath band name and title in an unrelated white script font, and above a black portion with Chinese or Taiwanese text. The insert wraps itself around the cassette, so one spine displays the information in English while the other displays it in Chinese or Taiwanese. The back shows a track listing and a few label credits in the same pink, white and black colour pattern as on the front.
UK 2-LP [Rough Trade ROUGH255]
This is one rare occurrence in which the UK pressing of a Smiths release was modelled after a foreign pressing, namely the American edition on Sire. However it must be said that the quality and looks of the packaging was significantly improved. The front of the sleeve shows the usual LP artwork. The back is slightly different to that of the American edition: the barcode was moved to the bottom right corner and the British catalogue number replaced it in the top right corner. The Sire credits at the very bottom were dropped. The sleeve is still gatefold and its inside content is exactly the same, but the text on the spine is black. The inner sleeves are also brown but they are thicker and glossier and the catalogue number on them was changed to the British one. The most noticeable difference between the American and British pressings is the labels. The British ones are black with grey text in the classic Rough Trade layout, which is a huge improvement over the generic yellow labels of the Sire edition.
ROUGH 255 A1 / ROUGH 255 B1 / ROUGH 255 C1 / ROUGH 255 D1
UK cassette [Rough Trade ROUGHC255]
The front of the Rough Trade UK cassette appears to be identical to that of the American cassette it was modelled on. The spine and back are very similar: the Sire logo, catalogue number and credits were replaced with Rough Trade ones, and the barcode in the UK is black over orange instead of being within a more contrasting white box. The inner part of the insert is completely different. It opens once for track listing and credits in black over orange. The next panel shows the full uncropped and untinted Shelagh Delaney photo which also appears inside the gatefold LP sleeve (view left). The reverse is all orange, without any text, so this means that there are no lyrics included in this edition. There are three versions of the cassette itself. Some are made of white plastic, some are mustard brown, others are black. The labels for all three variations are glossy black with grey text: "The Smiths" and album title at the top, Rough Trade logo on the left, no track listing.
UK CD [Rough Trade ROUGHCD255]
More care was taken in the design of the UK compact disc than for the American edition it was modelled on. The front shows the usual cd artwork. The back shows the track listing in smaller print, which means that there is space left underneath for the Rough Trade logo and address amongst other things. Unlike the American edition there is nothing in the right half on the back except for the barcode, which is printed directly over the background image instead of being kept inside a more contrasting white box. The layout inside the booklet is almost the same, but the paper is orange instead of white. The back of the booklet shows more or less the same credits (with a few adaptations), but the paragraph explaining how to care for compact discs was completely dropped. The cd surface is silver with dark orange text printed directly onto it. It is stated there that it was made in France by MPO.
UK music book [Warner Bros Music Ltd and IMP 21046]
A4 size 140-page softback songbook featuring the music and words for all 24-tracks on the album. Also includes great colour photographs of the band. View here.
UK/Europe CD [2012 reissue on Warner/Rhino 2564660483]
UK/Europe 2-LP [2012 reissue on Rhino Records 2564665877]
UK/Europe promo CD-r [Rhino Records]
CD-r to promote 'The Smiths - Complete - Remastered by Johnny Marr' reissues. Comes in a PVC sleeve with full color artwork and fold out insert. Additional information needed.
UK 2-LP test pressing
A very small number of test pressings have made it into the collecting world. The 2 records bear all white labels and are found inside white inner-sleeve-type paper sleeves.
ROUGH 255 A1 / ROUGH 255 B1 / ROUGH 255 C1 / ROUGH 255 D1
UK proof LP sleeve
Printers proofs showing the front, back and spine of the gatefold British LP sleeve, with registration and proofing bars, have made it to the collectors market. There doesn't seem to be any difference between the artwork shown on them and the definitive artwork except perhaps the intensity of the orange tint.
UK proof LP sleeve - orange sleeve and blue text
This is identical to the above, but the text on the front is blue instead of white. It is unclear whether the text on the back is also blue or the usual golden brown.
UK proof LP sleeve - blue sleeve
This is identical to the above, but the front and back image are tinted steel blue instead of orange. The text on the front is white, while it is golden on the spine and back.
UK proof LP sleeve - gatefold lyrics side
A printers proof of the inner gatefold side of the sleeve (where the lyrics are printed) has also made it into the hands of one or a few collectors. The layout is the same, but the background color is beige and the text printed on it is steel blue. The full Shelagh Delaney image repeated on both sides is also tinted steel blue (some may exist with text and image in black). Glossy and matte variations are known to exist. Some have been seen with handwritten revision notes at the top.
UK proof LP inner sleeve
This is a very basic printer's proof of the LP's inner sleeve, which means it is all brown with only the catalogue number ROUGH 255 in the top right corner of the 'big' side, which is the side with flaps that are meant to be folded over the other side. This has been seen in two variations, one over pale brown paper and the other over white paper.
UK gold disc
Official BPI gold disc issued to commemorate sales in excess of 100 000 copies. It shows in the upper half the cd front artwork next to a cd. The bottom half has a gold BPI plaque stating the recipient and the gold status. Everything is mounted over a red velvet background and framed inside a gold frame.
(unknown) shelf talker
A shelf talker is something used in retail to draw attention to certain items being specially promoted. This one is of unknown origin. It has a plain white flat section that would presumably be slipped under a stack of cds on a shelf to hold it in place. The front section is the part sticking out. It is orange and says "The Smiths" in white. View here. Although the item has been advertised as having been used for "Louder Than Bombs", it would be very surprising that this is accurate because in 1987 most music consumers had not yet switched to the relatively new compact disc format and record shops did not yet stock multiple cd copies of an album. It was probably simply associated to "Louder Than Bombs" because of the fact that it is orange and white. It can be speculated that this may date back to around 1995 when the "Singles" compilation was released, as that album's design was also based on the colour orange.