Rum, Sodomy, & The Lash is The Pogues undiluted, at the height of their immense powers. Producer Elvis Costello must take some credit - his assessment that he needed "to capture them in their dilapidated glory before some more professional producer fucked them up" was spot-on. Still, what really made it the album it was was Shane McGowan's lyricism - now so potent (see " A Pair Of Brown Eyes") that he could be genuinely considered amongst the best of the decade, if not all time. The band also displayed an uncanny ability to make other people's songs their own - "Jesse James", "The Band Played Waltzing Matilda", "I'm A Man You Don't Meet Every Day". Rowdy, rollicking, intelligent, and endlessly enjoyable - Rum, Sodomy, & The Lash may not be the most accessible thing The Pogues ever did, but it's the album that proves their greatness best.