After spending nine years living in France, Wreckless Eric returned to Britain in 1998. This song's title explains his feelings about his native country on arriving home. Eric explained to Uncut
magazine October 2004: "It was like returning to a country that been through a war. When I left in 89, the recession was about to happen. I used to come back occasionally and see that English people were pasty, unhealthy-looking and the place was falling to pieces. It was shabby, with an air of hopelessness. Nobody had any money. The pubs were full of giant-screen sports TV, trying to get people back into the pubs. And I felt guilty for missing all that, but I had my own recession. I was doing a lot of gigs in Europe and it was kind of hand-to-mouth. But when I came back for good, I could feel it wasn't the England I knew. So I think 'The Sell-By Date' is all of that finally coming out."
DeeTheWriter - Saint Petersburg, Russia Federation