Tear Ya Down: The Rarities features many alternative recordings and rare tracks throughout Motörhead's early history from 1977 to 1980.
Disc 1 of this compilation was originally released semi-officially under the title Dirty Love in 1989.
Disc 2 of this compilation was originally released semi-officially under the title Stone Dead Forever in 1997.
The compilation was also released a second time in 2002 under the title Speed Not Comfort through the Label Eagle Records with a shuffled track listing and three live tracks from Blitzkrieg on Birmingham '77 as a bonus.
Speed Not Comfort features the same tracks as Tear Ya Down: The Rarities but on this compilation the tracks are shuffled and not in the same order as on the original semi-official releases Dirty Love and Stone Dead Forever. This compilation also added three live tracks from the semi-official live album Blitzkrieg on Birmingham '77. Another difference is that Speed Not Comfort includes a longer version of the song "Dirty Love", which consists of the short outtake and the so-called "Full version" (look at the track listing of Tear Ya Down: The Rarities), although the "Full version" itself (without the outtake) is included as well. On this compilation the song "Like a Nightmare" is called "Nightmare", like on the original release Stone Dead Forever. While the booklet of Tear Ya Down: The Rarities includes descriptions about the songs of this compilation, Speed Not Comfort contains liner notes by Roy Davies.
"Tear Ya Down" was originally released on the studio album Overkill in 1979.
"Like a Nightmare" (or just "Nightmare" on Speed Not Comfort) was originally released on the single No Class in 1979.
"Stone Dead Forever", "Sharpshooter", "Bomber" and "Step Down" were originally released on the studio album Bomber in 1980.
"Dirty Love" was originally released on the single Ace of Spades in 1980.
"Shoot You in the Back", "Love Me Like a Reptile", "Fast and Loose", "Ace of Spades", "(We Are) the Road Crew", "The Hammer", "Fire Fire" and "Jailbait" were originally released on the studio album Ace of Spades in 1980.
All the alternative versions of these songs were later included on the 2005 released deluxe editions of the albums Overkill, Bomber and Ace of Spades.
"Hump on Your Back" was originally recorded in 1980 and originally released on the semi-official LP-single Hump on Your Back in 1996.
"Waltz of the Vampire" was originally recorded in 1980 and is an early instrumental which became the song "Dance", released on the studio album Ace of Spades in 1980.
"Bastard", "Godzilla Akimbo", "You Ain't Gonna Live Forever" and "Fun on the Farm" are rare tracks which were recorded around 1980. "Bastard". "Godzilla Akimbo" and "You Ain't Gonna Live Forever" are otherwise unavailable, while "Fun on the Farm" was later included on the 2007 released compilation Fast Eddie Clarke Anthology.
"Treat Me Nice" was originally recorded in 1980 and is an early version of the song "You Better Run", released on the studio album March ör Die in 1992.
"City Kids" was originally released on the single Motorhead in 1977.
All three live versions were recorded at the Town Hall in Birmingham on 3 June 1977 and were originally released on the semi-official live album Blitzkrieg on Birmingham '77 in 1989. The tracks are also included in the 2002 released live compilation Keep Us on the Road – Live 1977, which contains both semi official-live albums Blitzkrieg on Birmingham '77 and Lock up Your Daughters.