With 24 tracks, Louder than Bombs is the best value Smiths CD. Every track is quality. You'll get Morrissey's wit, his compassion, his keen observations, his emotion, his misery - and of course the great musical backing of Johnny Marr, Andy Rourke and Mike Joyce.
These tracks are collected from various points in the Smiths career, singles, B-sides, and album tracks. You won't notice, as the production of the tracks is very similar, so they blend well.
You get to hear the Smiths try everything, from punk (London), to rockabilly (Shakespeare's Sister), to even the reggae tinged Rubber Ring.
There are a lot of rare tracks here too, all just as good as the hits. Highlights include "You Just Haven't Earned it Yet Baby", "Half a Person" and "Asleep". You'll also get the Smiths only instrumental "Oscillate Wildly", the original single version of "Hand in Glove", and the effects filled "Golden Lights", the Smith's most campy recording. Quite a selection!
For new fans, this album is a great start. It shows everything the Smiths can do, and lots of it. Plus, getting Louder than Bombs it will save you getting the albums "Hatful of Hollow" and "The World Won't Listen", as it has nearly all the material from both.
If you are casual fan, and just want the hits you remember, maybe it might be better to get the CD Singles or the Very Best of the Smiths, as this collection isn't exactly focused on the singles.