THE DIVINE COMEDY is the nom de pop of NEIL HANNON, an Irishman who deserves a place alongside JARVIS COCKER, MORRISSEY, and NEIL TENNANT in the mordant-wit pantheon of contemporary songwriters. Like those gentlemen, he is more than capable of joining a killer riff with a cute-yet-cutting couplet.
In the beginning (the late '80s), the Divine Comedy was content to channel R.E.M.-styled jangle-pop. But with the subsequent success of Britpop (generally) and PULP (specifically), the sound began to change. SCOTT WALKER suddenly seemed to become Hannon's muse. The music became increasingly baroque; lush; melodramatic. And the lyrics turned smarter; sharper; tongue-in-cheekier. It was around this time (2000) that I happened upon the "best of" collection A SECRET HISTORY. It was bewitching. I never looked back.
Until now. Over the course of two posts (this one and this coming Monday's one), we will be taking a look back at the Divine Comedy's career to date -- starting at the end; ending at the start. (Well... not QUITE the start. I am omitting album #1 (1993's LIBERATION) for the simple reason that I am neither fond nor in love with that particular release. My apologies, Mr. Hannon; it just doesn't move me.)
THE DIVINE COMEDY on MySPACE.
From the LP VICTORY FOR THE COMIC MUSE, 2006 >>>
[MP3] "The Light of Day"
[MP3] "A Lady of a Certain Age"
From the LP ABSENT FRIENDS, 2004 >>>
[MP3] "Absent Friends"
[MP3] "Our Mutual Friend"
From the LP REGENERATION, 2001 >>>
[MP3] "Perfect Lovesong"
From the LP THE DIVINE COMEDY: A SECRET HISTORY, 1999 >>>
[MP3] "Gin Soaked Boy"
[MP3] "Too Young to Die"