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While the "William, It Was Really Nothing" single was in the charts, the Smiths planned these few dates in and around Wales as a warm-up for their first North American tour scheduled in October. However that tour was cancelled at the eleventh hour and the Smiths decided to go into the studio to record their "Meat Is Murder" album instead.
"Reel Around The Fountain", which had been neglected during the summer, reappeared in the set. It was still one of the most requested songs at the time. "These Things Take Time" which had been mostly forgotten in 1984 was also reinstated. To make way for these new additions, "I Don't Owe You Anything", "What Difference Does It Make" and "Pretty Girls Make Graves" were dropped. The former's live career was over, while the other two would be performed only a few more times before the end of the year then dropped when more material from the upcoming "Meat Is Murder" album would be added.
The rest of the setlist - which was identical on all three nights - included the recent single "Heaven Knows I'm Miserable Now" and it b-side "Girl Afraid", the current single "William, It Was Really Nothing", the recently reinstated "Jeane" and the 1983 live staples "Handsome Devil", "This Charming Man", "You've Got Everything Now", "Still Ill", "Hand In Glove" and "Miserable Lie".
Here is the number of times each song was performed on this leg, in descending order of frequency.
Barbarism Begins At Home - 3
See here for more tour statistics.
The other two new live additions, "Please, Please, Please, Let Me Get What I Want" and "How Soon Is Now?", weren't well adapted from their studio counterparts. "Please, Please, Please, Let Me Get What I Want" was dryer and was extended by repeating the second verse. It ended abruptly after Morrissey's last word, without the recorded version's beautiful outro. Later renditions would be significantly improved. It was obviously difficult to recreate the studio effects of "How Soon Is Now?" on stage. Live performances of that would be improved on the Queen Is Dead tour with the addition of second guitarist Craig Gannon.
"Nowhere Fast" which had been recorded since the previous live dates with plans of releasing it as the single after "William, It Was Really Nothing" (those plans were scrapped) had since evolved sensibly. It now sounded a lot like the song that would shortly be re-recorded and released on "Meat Is Murder".
"Hand In Glove" included an extended outro complete with Morrissey ah-ah-ah-ah's. In it, instead of singing "but we have something they'll never have", Morrissey usually sang "we have something they never had". Some harder numbers like "Handsome Devil" and "Still Ill" were given a rockabilly-ish edge. Echo was used in the latter part of "Barbarism Begins At Home" to beef up Morrissey's grunts. "These Things Take Time", the standard final song of the main set, ended with an extended guitar wall of sound while Morrissey wailed in a high pitched voice.
In "You've Got Everything Now" which was played in an unusual early slot (it had served as an encore for a long time), Morrissey made many of the usual changes, but also added more. In "Still Ill" Morrissey sang the slightly alternate "I really wouldn't bother". In "These Things Take Time" a line was changed at least once to "You said I was ill and you were wrong".
The most circulated concert for these 3 warm-up dates is the one from Cardiff. It is not available on any 'official' bootleg, but fanmade CD-Rs and tapes are being traded and MP3s are available on file-trading networks. Swansea is also available on fanmade CD-Rs and on the internet, albeit more limitedly. Gloucester is circulated on compact discs, but not on the internet yet. Digital files in WMA format widely circulated on file sharing networks credited as being from the Gloucester gig are actually from Dublin, 12 November 1984.