The Smiths were an English rock group active from 1982 to 1987. The group was based on the songwriting partnership of Morrissey and Johnny Marr, and were signed to the independent record label Rough Trade Records. Considered by some critics to be the most important alternative rock band to emerge from the British indie scene of the 1980s. The Smiths have had a major influence on subsequent alternative music, including the Britpop movement and bands such as The Stone Roses, Gene, Radiohead, Blur, Suede, Oasis, The Libertines, and Doves.
At the time, the group was notable in particular for two things: Morrissey's unusual, witty, and controversial lyrics, and Marr's music, which helped return guitar-based music to popularity after it had fallen out of favour in the UK charts. The group released a total of four studio albums and several compilations in fewer than five years, as well as numerous singles.