The Smiths were an English rock band formed in Manchester in 1982.
In February 1984, the group released their debut album The Smiths, which reached number two on the UK Albums Chart.
The title of the popular book on The Smiths, Songs That Saved Your Life, refers to a line from the song "Rubber Ring."
Early in 1985 the band released their second album, Meat Is Murder. This album was more strident and political than its predecessor, including the pro-vegetarian title track (Morrissey forbade the rest of the group from being photographed eating meat), the light-hearted republicanism of "Nowhere Fast", and the anti-corporal punishment "The Headmaster Ritual" and "Barbarism Begins at Home".
Rourke was fired from the band in early 1986 due to his use of heroin.