The Divine Comedy / Venus, Cupid, Folly & Time 24CD set unboxing video

SDE lifts the lid on a ‘flawless’ box set

Today, we take a very close look at Venus, Cupid, Folly & Time, the new 24CD The Divine Comedy box set which celebrates 30 years of music from the band. It’s released on Friday, but check out this early preview via the SDEtv unboxing video!

Thirty Years of The Divine Comedy: Venus, Cupid, Folly  & Time is released on 9 October 2020. Any orders placed now are shipped in November, but if you’ve previously pre-ordered you should get the box this week.

Order the box with a letter signed by Neil Hannon – official store exclusive 

Browse the official store for individual deluxe reissues and vinyl

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The Divine Comedy

24 CD box set


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The Divine Comedy

liberation - remastered vinyl LP


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The Divine Comedy

promenade - remastered vinyl LP


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The Divine Comedy

casanova - remastered vinyl LP


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The Divine Comedy

A short album about love - remastered vinyl LP


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The Divine Comedy

Fin de Siecle - remastered vinyl LP


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The Divine Comedy

regeneration - remastered vinyl LP


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The Divine Comedy

absent friends - remastered vinyl LP


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The Divine Comedy

Victory for the Common muse - remastered vinyl LP


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The Divine Comedy

Bang Goes The Knighthood - remastered vinyl LP


In the box set:

Juveneilia (2CD)
Liberation (2CD)
Promenade (2CD)
Casanova (2CD)
A Short Album About Love (CD+DVD)
Fin de Siècle (2CD)
Regeneration (2CD)
Absent Friends (2CD)
Victory For The Comic Muse (2CD)
Bang Goes The Knighthood (2CD)
Foreverland (2CD)
Office Politics (2CD)

Liberation (2CD)

CD 1

Festive Road
Death Of A Supernaturalist
Bernice Bobs Her Hair
I Was Born Yesterday
Your Daddy’s Car
The Pop Singer’s Fear Of The Pollen Count
Queen Of The South
Victoria Falls
Three Sisters
Europe By Train

CD 2

Untitled Melody
Your Daddy’s Car (demo)
Queen Of The South (demo)
Europop (live)
Little Darlin’
Bernice Bobs Her Hair (early idea)
Bontempi Beats 1
The Pop Singers Fear Of The Pollen Count (demo)
Europe By Train (live)
I Can Think (But I Can’t Feel)
Lucy (early version)
Festive Road (demo)
Three Sisters (live)
I Was Born Yesterday (alternate version)
Bontempi Beats 2
Christmas With The Hannons
Victoria Falls (demo)
Timewatching (demo)
Bontempi Beats 3
Suzanne (live)

Promenade (2CD)

CD 1

Going Downhill Fast
The Booklovers
A Seafood Song
Don’t Look Down
When The Lights Go Out All Over Europe
The Summerhouse
Neptune’s Daughter
A Drinking Song
Ten Seconds To Midnight
Tonight We Fly

CD 2

Ten Seconds To Midnight (alternate version)
Assume The Goldsmith
When The Lights Go Out All Over Europe (live)
Tell Me What’s Wrong
Life’s What You Make It
Lost Prom Jam
Neptune’s Daughter (demo)
Going Downhill Fast (instrumental)
The Booklovers (demo)
The Bright Lights Of Ealing
Bath (alternate version)
The Summerhouse (early idea)
The Summerhouse (live)
When The Lights Go Out All Over Europe (early idea)
A Woman Of The World (Promenade style demo)
Geronimo (live with Yann Tiersen)
Don’t Look Down (demo)
A Drinking Song (live)
Only For Tonight
Tonight We Fly (demo)

Casanova (2CD)

CD 1

Something for the Weekend
Becoming More Like Alfie
Middle-Class Heroes
In & Out of Paris & London
Songs of Love
The Frog Princess
A Woman of the World
Through a Long & Sleepless Night
Theme from Casanova
The Dogs & the Horses

CD 2

Hannon’s Game
Birds Of Paradise Farm
A Woman Of The World (early idea)
Motorway To Damascus
Crapper’s Delight
Songs Of Love (demo)
Love Is Lighter Than Air
Comme Beaucoup De Messieurs (avec Valérie Lemercier)
Painting The Forth Bridge
Solsbury Eel
Frog Princess (demo)
My Lovely Horse (from Father Ted)
Father Ted Theme
My Lovely Mayo Mammy (from Father Ted)
The Miracle Is Mine (from Father Ted)
Theme From Casanova (early idea)
Electro Wurly Groove
Something Before The Weekend (early idea)
Something For The Weekend (monitor mix)
Becoming More Like Alfie (monitor mix)
Stereo Laboratory
Through A Long And Sleepless Night (early idea)
The Dogs And The Horses (live)

A Short Album About Love (CD+DVD)

In Pursuit Of Happiness
Everybody Knows (Except You)
If I Were You (I’d Be Through With Me)
I’m All You Need

Bonus material

Bath (live)
A Short Film About Driving
Everybody Knows (Except You) (early idea)
Johnny Mathis’ Feet (live)
I’m All You Need (instrumental demo)
A Short Film About Dreams
Your Daddy’s Car (live)
Teach Us To Love
A Short Film About Waiting
A Short Film About Chance
If I Were You (I’d Be Through With Me) (rehearsal version)
Make It Easy On Yourself (live)

Bonus DVD – A Short Film About A Short Album About Love

In Pursuit Of Happiness
Everybody Knows (Except You)
If I Were You (I’d Be Through With Me)
I’m All You Need
A Drinking Song
Something For The Weekend
The Dogs And The Horses

Fin de Siècle (2CD)

CD 1

Generation Sex
Commuter Love
Eric The Gardener
National Express
Life On Earth
The Certainty Of Chance
Here Comes The Flood

CD 2

I’ve Been To A Marvellous Party
Generation Sex (early idea)
Gin Soaked Boy
With Whom To Dance
Thrillseeker (rehearsal version)
Maryland Electric Rainstorm
Little Acts Of Kindness
Life On Earth (early idea)
The Dead Only Quickly
The Winter Blues
London Irish
Here Comes The Flood (demo)
The Certainty Of Chance (demo)
Last Stand In Metroland
Then Four Buses Came Along At Once
National Express (rehearsal version)
Postcard To Rosie
Dear Lord And Father Of Mankind


CD 1

Bad Ambassador
Perfect Lovesong
Note To Self
Lost Property
Eye Of The Needle
Love What You Do
Dumb It Down
The Beauty Regime

CD 2

Get Me To A Monastery
Lost Property (early idea)
How’s Your Wireless?
Thinking The Unthinkable (demo)
Garden Cities
Timestretched (demo)
Note To Self (live)
Edward The Confessor
Soft Power
Born With A Broken Heart
Mastermind (rehearsal version)
Boy With A Harmonica
Soul Trader
Perfect Lovesong (early idea)
The Night Is Not Enough
No Excuses
Love What You Do (Live)

Absent Friends (2CD)

CD 1

Absent Friends
Sticks and Stones
Leaving Today
Come Home Billy Bird
My Imaginary Friend
The Wreck Of The Beautiful
Our Mutual Friend
The Happy Goth
Freedom Road
Laika’s Theme
Charmed Life

CD 2

Absolute Power
Our Mutual Friend (early idea)
The Bird Evolution
Girl Least Likely
Mr Right
Sticks and Stones (demo)
The Dark Horse
All Things (alternate version)
Rose For The Lady
Absent Friends (demo)
Anthem For Bored Youth (demo)
Our Mutual Friend (alternate version)
Windy Pop
Laika’s Theme (The Promise)
Charmed Life (alternate version)

Victory for the Comic Muse (2CD)

CD 1

To Die A Virgin
Mother Dear
Diva Lady
A Lady Of A Certain Age
The Light Of Day
Party Fears Two
Arthur C. Clarke’s Mysterious World
The Plough
Count Grassi’s Passage Over Piedmont
Snowball In Negative

CD 2

Births, Deaths And Marriages
Diva Lady (acoustic version)
Home (demo)
Lili Marlene
Count Grassi’s Passage Over Piedmont (early idea)
Count Grassi’s Passage Over Piedmont (instrumental)
Love/Hate Relationship
Miss Sharapova
Don’t Blame The Young
Long Slow Suicide
To Die A Virgin (early idea)
A Little Bit Of Love (Goes A Long Long Way)
Elaine (alternate version)
A Lady Of A Certain Age (instrumental)
Premonition Of Love

Bang Goes the Knighthood (2CD)

CD 1

Down In The Street Below
The Complete Banker
Neapolitan Girl
Bang Goes The Knighthood
At The Indie Disco
Have You Ever Been In Love
Assume The Perpendicular
The Lost Art Of Conversation
Island Life
When A Man Cries
Can You Stand Upon One Leg
I Like

CD 2

Assume The Perpendicular (alternate version)
On The Barge
At The Indie Disco (demo 1)
Girl Overboard
Bang Goes The Knighthood (alternate version)
Beside The Railway Tracks
Have You Ever Been In Love (alternate version)
Oh Christina
Ya Sumeera
Down In The Street Below (demo)
Island Life (demo)
The Bitter End
When A Man Cries (demo)
The Loneliest Man In The World
The Circular Firing Squad
At The Indie Disco (demo 2)
What’s Wrong With You
Wide Open Spaces
I Like (alternate version)

Foreverland 2CD

CD 1

Napoleon Complex
Catherine The Great
Funny Peculiar
The Pact
To The Rescue
How Can You Leave Me On My Own
I Joined The Foreign Legion (To Forget)
My Happy Place
A Desperate Man
Other People
The One Who Loves You

CD 2

Napoleon Complex (alternate version)
How Can You Leave Me On My Own (alternate version)
Them Chattering Teeth
The Pact (demo)
Desperate Man (demo)
Your Lucky Day
I Joined The Foreign Legion (early idea)
Breakfast (To Our Fathers In Distress demo)
Reconnecting (To The Rescue early idea)
To The Rescue (demo)
One Ear Up, One Ear Down (demo)
Catherine The Great (demo)
Pictures (alternate Foreverland)
ARP Break
My Happy Place (demo)
Just Can’t Get Enough
The One Who Loves You (demo)
C’est Si Bon
I Joined The Foreign Legion (alternate version)
Who Were We (demo)

Office Politics 2CD

CD 1

Office Politics
Norman Abnd Norma
Absolutely Obsolete
Infernal Machines
You’ll Never Work In This Town Again
Psychological Evaluation
The Synthesizer Service Centre Super Summer Sale
The Life And Soul Of The Party
A Feather In Your Cap
I’m A Stranger Here
Dark Days Are Here Again
Philip And Steve’s Furniture Removal Company
Opportunity Knox
After The Lord Mayor’s Show
When The Working Day Is Done

CD 2

The Divine Comedy Ltd
Where Have All The Milkmen Gone
Take Your Drum
After The Lord Mayor’s Show (alternate version)
Olivia, New Tron Song
The Life And Soul Of The Party (alternate version 1)
You’ll Never Work In This Town Again (alternate version)
The Erotic Dreams Of Andrea Palladio
Absolutely Obsolete (demo)
Death And The Mellotron
Dark Days Are Here Again (early version)
The Berlin Airlift
Queuejumper (early version)
Pop Muzik
Large Mellotron Collider
The Life And Soul Of The Party (alternate version 2)
Infernal Machines (early version)
Turning Japanese
Norman And Norma (demo)
Nordyland 83
Philip And Steve’s Furniture Removal Company (alternate version)


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Jonathan Riley

got mine from amazon.co.uk in the USA, the boxset which looks lovely is destroyed. The shrink wrap is torn off and the outer box is ripped apart on one side. They packaged it without any material inside the box and the amazon box is ripped to shreds

Jonathan Riley

so i just spoke to amazon.co.uk on chat. They didn’t want to confirm the date they were getting more stock in, but the rep told me.
“You May expect this after 16th November but right now we are not be able to confirm any date”
Don’t shoot the messenger if I am not correct, but i just wanted to share my findings

Martin Kilroy

I have 2 Bang Goes The Knighthoods and no Absent Friends . Does anyone have contact details for who to contact?


Just echoing what everyone has already said… if only every band releasing a retrospective box set did it like this. We don’t need mugs or badges or replica backstage passes. I’ve been making my way through it this week, and cannot believe how much unreleased material is on here (and what a surprise to find the original versions of Generation Sex and Certainty of Chance)! As for the stuff that was left off- it would’ve been nice, but I’m not complaining!

James Hendry

As I’ve seen some mention about the “missing tracks”, I thought I’d post here the list I have made of previously released tracks which didn’t make the cut.

There are a lot, but actually only original 6 Neil Hannon compositions which didn’t make the grade.


Good luck collecting them all, if you’re that much of a completist ;)


Those fan club CDs are going to maintain their value!

(I’d add only that the earlier release of “On The Barge” on the digital single for “At The Indie Disco” is not the same as the demo on the box set, and that the mastering on “Untitled Melody” is to my ears far superior on the CD single of _Becoming More Like Alfie_.)

Jon Dee

I also had the ‘glue’ problem with the cd box set which was a bit disconcerting at first but if you proceed with caution you can get the cd’s out and clean the covers up without causing any damage. I’m 99% sure that the signature on letter is printed and not real (eg there is no sign of any pressure being applied to the paper and the red ink appears elsewhere on the letter) which may account why so many have been made available (mine was numbered in the 1,000s!). I really want to believe I wrong but if it is just printed then I feel a bit cheated and it slightly diminishes how unique this set (as sold by the official store) is. I have to agree with Paul though that the amount of bonus audio included is phenomenal and puts some other artist’s efforts to shame.

Tony B

They are definitely hand signed – I saw a picture on Instagram where Neil had added a note. Mine is just signed “Neil” though.


After much pain I managed to pick up my Divine Comedy Box and the 8 vinyl albums I also ordered.
Based on what I read here I was a little apprehensive when opening the box and I went through to make sure that everything was intact and no discs missing. Everything seems fine luckily.
For those that ordered from Townsend I would just drop their customer services a line – I have always found them to be very helpful (they dont always respond immediately as I guess they get a lot of emails) but they always do respond and have always sorted any problems I have had.

Just listening to Fin De Siecle on vinyl and I have to say the quality of the pressing is excellent (so far)

antonio castiello

just arrived and I’m really in love with it!!! it is true that there are some missing – one above all the cover THERE IS A LIGHT… (fortunately I have the original Les Inrockuptibles’s cd) but still remains the box of the year.

Chris Fahey

So great!
Received the 3 Vinyl Editions that never made it to vinyl until now.

Absent Friends
Victory For The Comic Muse.

All came in stunning gatefold with all the liner notes on the inner sleeve with recent writings from Neil looking back.
Pressings are super clean and sound amazing.
Only beef was they stuck the LPS in the cardstock inners and did not spring for poly lined inners…. Love me some Paper Scuff! C’mon DC! Step it up another 10p!

Downloads of all the reissue material in MP3 or FLAC as mentioned previously.


Norman Reid

My boxset arrived from Townsend Music this afternoon and there are two copies of ‘A Short Album About Love’ included in the box while the ‘Promenade’ album is missing!!
Paul Have you a contact person in Townsend Music I can bring this to the attention of? Thank you.

Dave Lee

My box set arrived today and (while it is absolutely a thing of beauty) the second disc for Fin De Siecle is missing. It doesn’t seem like anyone else is posting a similar issue here, so hopefully Townsend Music (who are fulfilling orders from the official site) will sort out my query and post me the missing disc.

Norman Reid

My boxset has two copies of ‘A Short Album About Love’ and is missing the ‘Promenade’ album. Everything else is there and it is a magnificent boxset!!


Well, I was going to buy it, buy Amazon doubled the price to almost $300 in the USA store. GOD no! This set reminds me how awesome the Adam Ant set was YEARS ago.

David Simon

This is a fantastic set, with great care and attention to detail in the presentation.
Unfortunately, there’s a slight problem with my set, which I can’t believe has affected just me. There appears to have been a bit too much glue used on the outer sleeves for the CDs, meaning that it’s quite difficult to get the CDs out of the outer sleeves. When you do, there’s a gluey bit left on the front cover of the “album cover” CD covers. The majority of my CDs are like this.


My majority of the inner album cases were a bit fiddly to get out for me, but I only noticed the glue on one of the covers, very tiny amount though.

Patrick Cleasby

I had three. A bit of zippo lighter fluid and a cotton bud and it’s gone…

Andy Jenkinson

I’m a bit surprised the “Swallows and Amazons – Original Piano Demos”, (that appeared as a second disc with ‘Office Politics’) and the “In May” (the rather downbeat chamber opera by Neil Hannon and Frank Alva Buecheler that was released with ‘Foreverland’) are *not* included here. Though that gives me a reason to keep those versions too, I suppose.
The distinction between what is NH and what is DC is d

Andy Jenkinson

…The distinction between those being NH rather than DC feels a little arbitrary.

Stephen Lee

Ok, Promenade Disc 1 is missing from my set! ?????? Is it just me ?

Ross Baker

For numerous reasons, I ordered online from HMV, who then had to cancel due to no stock (maybe something got damaged in the warehouse?), so I re-ordered from Resident in Brighton who have just informed me they don’t have stock in but have ordered it from the supplier – which, as it’s out of stock everywhere and the first run is out of print, looks like I might have to wait for the second edition next month now, despite the fact that I ordered this in May.

This is the second time this has happened to me this year – my TFF Hurting box got lost in the post and the store wouldn’t send a refund until well after it had gone out of print, meaning I ended up having to spend £90 and fund a scalper to get a copy. I do understand why these things get released as limited editions, but it’s an absolute nightmare if something goes wrong. I really miss the days when labels would release enough to be available for weeks or months after release day before it went out of print (if ever!). I’m having an exceptionally bad month and this box was something I was particularly looking forward to.

Ant P

Feel your pain.
I pre-ordered the Jessie Ware white vinyl new LP from HMV when it was exclusive to them.
Shortly before release it got refunded (along with everybody else’s – alleged HMV/label payment beef) and made “exclusive” to her official store instead, except it appeared on indie store sites then got taken off and then put back on again in the end.
Ordered it straight away from them.
I had already pre-ordered a signed black vinyl from the official store but as there were some available again I ordered another one with the white and tried to cancel the original order to save £3.95 duplicate postage.
They said it was too late but I could return it.
It duly turned-up but the white vinyl order did not.
Not too worried as the quick turnaround meant an expected release later than the black.
It never ever turned up despite being “processed” but never dispatched.
The second signed black did on it’s own about half way through this, no explanation of why no white with it.
Silence from the official store/Digital Stores and kept getting fobbed off with “awaiting stock” etc.
Meanwhile sold out everywhere in the indie stores that did after all stock it (and which I have one 10-15 mins walk away) and is over £100 on flipBay.
12 weeks later I just get a refund and a refusal to give me an explanation.
My theory is they were waiting on more signed black vinyl and when that eventually turned up they hadn’t put aside the white.


Received my box from the official store (and some of my Vinyl in drips and drabs from Amazon -just send it all at once to reduce cardboard waste!), a thing of beauty, and very very tastefully remastered (same goes for the new Tears For Fears remaster), loving all the extras, notes etc that I’ve only just dipped my toe in a little.

Quick observations:

Seems like Mr. Hannon finally cleared the use of the La Dolce Vita samples for Fin De Siecle -as now heard on Generation Sex and Certainty Of Chance, replacing Katie Puckrik and his respective spoken parts -which were previously only on the Promo version of the album before it had to be changed.

Bang Goes the Knighthood’s Assume the Particular originates from the Promenade era

Some of the demos that appeared as earlier B-sides are different here (so don’t get rid of your early singles, if you would be that foolish!)

Maryland Electric Rainstorm sounds great away from my wobble sounding cassette single.

Father Ted fans will enjoy the Casanova extras.

Our Mutual Friend (alternate version) is the PSB/sad disco banger Neil has always threatened to make!

Also, the vinyl download codes allow download of both Mp3 and Flac versions -the ones i have received so far seem to offer varying degrees of hi-res when it comes to the main album flac content, nearly all are 24bit in depth.

You can’t really wish for more as a fan (especially if you have most singles already). The 2020 mix of Promenade (separate purchase unfortunately) does indeed sound quite different to the original, and not in a bad way.



Just received my copy in the post this morning. Number 696 on the signed letter from Neil. Can’t wait to delve into this set! I’m a late fan and only really took an interest when Office Politics came out, so this set was announced just at the right time for me as it saved me buying them all individually.

Norman Reid

Mine’s on it’s way. Due to be delivered on Monday. Can’t wait!! Met Neil at the Foreverland signing in HMV in Belfast and he said he’d never written a song with ‘Norman’ in the title. Then Office Politics comes along with ‘Norman and Norma’. I’m still waiting for my royalties!! Lol!!

Gareth Jones

If you prefer going to a bricks and mortar shop, may l suggest HMV? It’s sold out on their website, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t copies on the high street. I just cancelled my Amazon order (which l don’t think was ever gonna happen anyway!) and bought it in HMV. It’s £119.99 in there, plus this weekend they have offer on. £10 off when you spend over £60. So l got it for £109.99!! Assume this is all branches, but l’ve not checked.


Need clarification on Foreverland and Office Politics (new versions)
I’ve bought all digital copies but these two do not appear at all; all Itunes offers are the older versions. I see that they don’t appear here as separate CDs; are they unique to the Box?

Gareth Jones

Not sure what you mean. I’ve just seen the deluxe versions for sale on iTunes! But in terms of the physical versions, you’re absolutely right, although it’s never been mentioned anywhere! It’s clearly been stated many times that Juveneilia is exclusive to the box set, but yes, the CDs of the last two albums (and their accompanying bonus discs) are also exclusive to it too! Odd it’s never been mentioned! However, iTunes DO have the deluxe versions available. Check again! And they’re on streaming sites.


Spotify has the new deluxe albums from Liberation to Bang Goes The Knighthood, but only the original 2016/2019 “deluxe” releases for Foreverland (with ‘In May’ as cd2) and Office Politics (with the ‘Swallows and Amazons’ demos as cd2). They don’t have the new versions of these 2 albums.

Are other streaming sites not the same?

Spotify also don’t have Juveneilia (or for that matter, the original live at Cite de la Musique cd from the first Knighthood release).

I wasn’t actually expecting so much of the set to go up for streaming. Presume it’s down to the individual releases.


You’re right but my iTunes have the old deluxe versions not the same second collection as the new releases. Of course, my iTunes may be ignorant about these new releases so who knows…. The Booklovers/Steinbeck and Salinger dropped/does anyone know why?

Daniel Wellington

This box set looks fantastic, but where is the 1999 version of “The Pop Singers Fear of the Pollen Count”?
It was a Top 40 hit after all and does sound a lot better than the original version.

martin farnworth

Lovely, quality item. Too right 10/10. A package done that states- nothing in the slightest to be at fault. Lost interest after “Absent Friends”- even if i quite like that album. This boxset makes me want to go back and reengage with Hannon’s output even if I may have listened to “Casanova” more than all the other stuff put together. Not sure i’ll be buying- looking to force the interest based on what I see!


Looks like some of the independents (Resident, Piccadilly Records) are showing this as available to order, if that helps anyone?

Mine’s just despatched from the official store. I’ve avoided the video so as to not to lessen the the experience.


@Barry –
How do you know yours has been despatched. Did you get some form of notification?

I haven’t received anything – which is a a bit worrying as I ordered way back on March 9th…

David McCallum

I got an email today (Oct. 8) from Divine Comedy shop that mine has shipped. It was ordered back in March. Neil Hannon might come close to salvaging 2020 for me.

The look and praise for this set brings to mind the Edsel fiasco for the Everything But The Girl re-issues. Seven matching re-issues and then the last two of Walking Wounded and Temperamental larger by a centimeter in width and height. Face palm! I sometimes look at those two and wonder “could I use a hacksaw on these two and have them not look mauled?” LOL


I checked the order status on the DC website. The dispatch email came later.

Andy MacKinnon

there’s a new 2020 mix of promenade being released as a digital exclusive it seems!



I want this! No, I need this!
But I couldn’t find it.

Joe Atari

this is a delight to witness. I’ve been a fan since 1994 when DC happened to be the support act to Tori Amos on her Under the Pink tour. since then i’ve seen them grow into a mainstream act, falter slightly around Regeneration, and then eventually fine tune what they do best.

Deluxe wise, this is a ten out of ten. I ordered it instantly from the TDC shop. For years many b-sides particularly form the 1990s deserved a decent compilation. So many of them could easily have been on albums. My only slight concern was the commissioned artwork for the alternative casings, but they’ve rectified that by using the period artwork from the original issues, and from what I can see, many photos used for singles in the booklet artwork for each album. Neil is just prolific, so that’s why there’s even b-sides left out here and there, and in the case of several albums, whole new disc twos. Foreeverland and Office Politics originally had sister albums included, so the bonus material adds even more content. It’s even more proof that the CD format is not a poor relation of vinyl, so much more can be added for a much more affordable price.

The Seeds of Love box is also a must, congratulations on that, but this is a whole career perfectly boxed.

Gareth Pugh

Joe Atari, I know completely what you mean – Neil Hannon always produced huge amounts of non-album material for singles – in the Setanta era, and carrying forward into the EMI period, I think he rarely if ever duplicated a B-side or extra track across formats – there was all-new bonus content on every permutation of a single, whether that was (often) 2 x CD formats and a 7″ or cassette (which is why I’m particularly pleased to see the awesome Maryland Electric Rainstorm make it onto CD at last – hence rippable to my iTunes library and ‘mobile’ listenable – previously only on a cassette single in the Fin de Siecle era). He finally jumped off the physical singles wagon around 2010 having left EMI and effectively DIY-ing his releases via Divine Comedy records, i think. That was a pity but he’s far from alone in that, and the new bonus discs for the last 2 LPs shows there is still plenty of good new stuff to be had.


Interesting that you say ‘…falter slightly around Regeneration…’. This seems to be the general consensus, even echoed by Mr Hannon himself I believe.
However, I rate Fin De Siecle and Regeneration as my two preferred TDC albums (so pleased they are to feature on the same night of the Barbican showcase now delayed to next year).
Although very much an atypical TDC album in terms of sound (the lack of strings for example) it still contains some of Hannon’s best songwriting I feel (and the B-Side Get Me to the Monastery is simply brilliant!).


Ah man, wish I was a bigger fan of TDC as that is a thing of beauty…the content to price ratio is incredible as is the presentation…

Had the recent Mansun, Muse & Supergrass boxsets followed this template I would have snapped them all up…

In fact, I hope The Flaming Lips & Sonic Youth get an eye on this & present their own back catalogues in such a way…actually, I think The Charlatans haphazard reissues would benefit from being reformatted in to this style…oh & The Chemical Brothers entire back catalogue too…

Larry Davis

It would be cool if there were a Flaming Lips set like this, but they just do packages of certain eras (like the indie Restless albums in a nice compact clamshell box…”Seeing The Unseeable 1986-1990″ 6CD…or the “1994-1997” era around “Clouds Taste Metallic”)…or 5.1 surround deluxe CD/DVDs (from “The Soft Bulletin” thru “Embryonic”)…I did meet Wayne once a year ago at a RSD event with his “King’s Mouth” live exhibit and asked him if there would be a project regarding the 2 big-but-weirdly-forgotten first Warners albums “Hit To Death In The Future Head” & “Transmissions From The Satellite Heart” (with the fluke “hit” “She Don’t Use Jelly”), remasters/expanded and he was up for collaborating on such an idea, he even gave me his phone number, I did call once & left a message but nothing more came of it, as he’s really busy with new music & being a dad/husband so I understand…I don’t think such a compact release is feasible with the Flaming Lips “hairy, messy” catalogue…it’s not really neat or anally organized like the Divine Comedy’s so obviously is…I kinda wish it was but that would take something apart, methinks…


Bang goes the “knighthood”, not “neighbourhood”…
See, I was paying attention.
Is there a prize?


Just for curiosity sake, when you originally posted this article (oct 7th) did Amazon actually have copies of this available or was it already on backorder? I am just curious as I placed an order today after my initial order from March was cancelled in August. I had been checking back to see if it was available but must have missed the magic moment it was actually in stock. I am anticipating that they will once again not honor the order and cancel it once November arrives. As this was the Box set I have been truly waiting for all year I may just go for the Artist’s shop and get the signed letter, I fear that once November rolls around and my Amazon order is cancelled again, copies will be gone. It really is a thing of beauty, the discs lined up looking like an antique collection of books.


Just go to the artists store and order
1 – if they take your order they are more likely to actually ship it (as opposed to the hit and miss with amazon)

2 – It is more likely to arrive without any dents or general damage

3 – More of the money goes to The Divine Comedy presumably (I’m only speculating of course)

4 -You get a signed letter

Surely enough reasons to avoid Amazon?

Larry Davis

This does look like a nice set… packaging wise, it looks like a fancier version of the recent Mojo Nixon box…which has 10CDs and a DVD of 7 clips & fun booklet…also the Lisa Stansfield Edsel box…I do want this as I have no DC in my collection at the mo…I just hope they made enough that they don’t sell out on me when I have avail funds…the Pretenders Edsel box is like this too but not multicoloured spines, just uniform black & white…

Brad B.

Hello all, being a more casual fan of TDC, only having 4 albums at the moment, I seem to have missed in previous announcements, posts, etc. if this CD box set is going to be a limited edition? I’m not in the position to buy it at the moment but would really like to when funds will allow. Paul very nice of you to do these video reveals, especially on such a nice box set as this one!


Only having 4 albums of an artist’s back-cat? As casuals go, you’re one of the more committed ;)

Wax Monster X

Pre-ordered this from the band site ages ago. The video has got me jonesing for it hard. Hope it gets to the states in a reasonable amount of time. I did the check the CD singles against the box tracklist and had to keep almost all as well. Strange to say there is a lot missing. The live albums would have been nice to include.

Jewel cases vs card sleeves. Card sleeves save space, jewel cases protect better. You can always replace a jewel case, but once a card sleeve is damaged ….

Darren Linklater

This is the box set highlight of the year for me. Ordered months ago from the DC website along with the 9 LP bundle. The box looks superb and is full to the brim with loads of extra tracks. A great example of how to do a box and not rip the fans off.
We have tickets for the on line concert and also two nights at the Dominion next year.
Looks like a weekend in digesting the goodies as long as the postman brings them on release day.

Andrew Hall

Ordered this as soon as it was announced – it really looks tremendous. And even at £125 it looks really good value! A lesson for Mr McCartney… he would probably put something like this out for £500 or more!?! I love them both but Neil’s music has soundtracked my life since the 90s – and I’ve seen them live many times. Long Live The Divine Comedy!

Jonathan Riley

amazon.co.uk now is sold out
they don’t even have a option to place a order while they await or try to get more stock

Gareth Jones

Well they DID have that option! Because I missed out on it when the pre-order period originally began, when Amazon’s allocation ran out. So I marked the item to notify me if it becomes available again. Then on 29th Sept they sent me an email saying it was now available to order, so I ordered it immediately.

Ever since then though, the info has remained as “we will email you when we have an estimated delivery date”. It’s also very odd that they’ve never had an image for the box set. If it wasn’t Amazon, I’d think it was a scam site!


You think they’ll honour orders that were placed before it was sold out?


Well, they didn’t honor my pre-order from March, cancelling mine in August, I even contacted customer support to contest the cancellation, of course to no avail, it was like arguing with a cat. They have raised the price and increased the shipping to America. I actually don’t think they will be getting any more copies. I remember reading when this was originally put for sale that the Divine Comedy people were unhappy with Amazon’s pricing and that they were given a specific allotment and that only so many were being produced. Granted a-lot has changed since then so perhaps more will be made, who knows.


Ordered Promenade and Fin De Siecle on vinyl yesterday and was happy that that’d be enough for me for the moment. But then Paul puts up this outrageous, scandalous, disgusting, obscene, wonderful video and I’ve now ordered these too. I don’t even listen to CDs anymore!

I’ve ordered from Amazon where it’s out of stock – presumably they’ll get some stock next month?


Ive ordered this as a birthday present for this house’s resident DC nut. How often do you get to order a nice expensive box set and get brownie points at the same time.

Looks like Foerverlans and Office Politics have got new bonus discs instead of just repeating the ones that were added when they were issued.

Also, the socially distanced Barbican gig mentioned elsewhere is streaming next Wednesday (at £12.50 a pop). https://www.barbican.org.uk/whats-on/2020/event/the-divine-comedy-live-from-the-barbican


Just watched the unboxing for the third time – this really is a thing of beauty.
Looking at the track listing I noticed that the bonus tracks on the last album include:
– Pop Muzik
– Turning Japanese

…which made me wonder if they are cover versions of those tracks (both great pop songs).
…which in turn made me dig out my copy of A Secret History which came with a bonus disc of rarities including some great cover versions:
– Life on Mars
– Life’s what you make it
– The Model

I’m sure he did a cover of Radioactivity as some point (and I have certainly seen him do Mr Blue Sky live – during a Duckworth/Lewis concert).
It would be great to have a Divine Comedy cover versions album at some point.

Andrew Hall

Radioactivity is one of the extra tracks on the National Express CD single – disc 1

Chris Squires

Plus the rather wonderful version of “Lay all your love on me” and an atrocious massacre of “Wuthering Heights”.
The Mr.Blue Sky version was indeed the brilliant, utterly brilliant in fact, Duckworth Lewis Method. (Who’s two concept albums are as good as anything The Divine Comedy did…. well almost).


He did a great, impromptu version of Disco 2000 once when he told the crowd that he would play requests but only of other people’s songs.

Ron van Rossum

So Parlophone people, please read these comments very carefully and stop making boxes collectable for no good reason.


I’m not familiar with any of The Divine Comedy’s music, but seeing this video is tempting me to buy the box just because it’s so beautiful. Streaming tracks on Spotify now to see if I like the music enough to buy this (the fall is proving to be too expensive to just blind buy, as much as I want to). It’s gorgeous.


Same here. Always was aware of the Divine Comedy but never got round to give them a listen. Thanks to Paul’s enticing unboxing vid of this exquisite set i listened to some songs. Turns out to be right up my alley! Ordered! Thank you, Paul! And thank you TDC for truly caring about the presentation of your music.


Gosh, great unboxing of another contender for the range value content award.

This box set honours fans, particularly i notice the price in that regard.

Has anyone else here picked up on the work of Simon warner? His one Cd release, waiting rooms was compared to Neil Hannon’s style. Well yes maybe, I’d suggest that Richard Harris is a closer comparison. (Credit to the amazon reviewer where I first read this comparison)

Either way, for those divine comedy fans who have ordered this great box, Simon’s cd will perhaps provide an interesting aperitif for you as you await your big divine comedy meal.

Ricardo Sardo

It really looks great. Fortunately I’ve ordered mine many months ago, so I hope to get my soon enough. The idea of having a “exterior uniform presentation” of each of the albuns, preserving the original artwork is a clever idea. For me, jewelcases simple could disappear, but they are cheaper… Well, I’m an old Divine Comedy and Neil Hannon fan, since mid 90’s (Casanova period). I had the chance to see a few times DC and NH solo and his music truly shines live, on stage. My favourite records from DC are “Promenade”, “Casanova” and “Fin de Siècle”, but there are terrific songs spread through his discography.


I’m so glad I ordered my copy earlier in the year, as if you order them now you have to wait until mid-november. It looks amazing! Really stunning. I love how they have put the albums in those outer slip cases , and that they are all gatefold sleeves instead of nasty jewel cases. Can’t wait for my copy!

Tim Abbott

I thought I’d be satisfied with the straightforward vinyl reissues of the first three albums, but I think you’ve persuaded me to get this CD set too! I’ve been lucky enough to get a ticket for the Divine Comedy’s upcoming socially distanced gig at the Barbican in a week’s time, so am hoping there may be copies to buy there.



Disc 1

1. Pie Jesu

2. Who

3. The Missing Link

4. Who’s Afraid

5. The Fools Who Can Only Talk

6. Give It A Chance

7. Power (Is Your Demand)

8. Who Is This Man

9. Loving You (Merciful Release)

10. Sanity

11. A Friend Of Mine

12. Neil’s First Amp

13. Completely Barking

14. Nobody Wins

15. Passion Fruit

16. Silent Man

17. October

18. Anonymous

19. Ridgeway Street

20. Suffer In Silence

21. Roselyn

22. Stream Of Unconsciousness

Disc 2

1. Fanning Intro

2. Ignorance Is Bliss

3. Indian Rain

4. Bleak Landscape

5. Tailspin

6. The Rise And Fall

7. Logic Vs Emotion

8. Secret Garden

9. Timewatch

10. Jerusalem

11. The Rise And Fall (Timewatch Version)

12. Europop

13. New Wave

14. Intifada

15. Monitor

16. Thanks For Listening


Thank you very much!


I preferred the earlier tunes when they were with Setanta


Awesome !!
I can’t wait to get my order!
Would it be possible to know the track listing of Juveneilia?
Thanks a lot!!

Peter Muscutt

Not enough of a fan to commit to buying this (saying that I really, really love ‘Tonight We Fly’ and think Hannon has, along with Jarvis Cocker, our down some of the true great lyrics of the 20th century), but it’s heartening for true fans they get something that looks this satisfying. Not just from a content point of view but aesthetically pleasing also, it’s an object that you could really enjoy looking through while the music plays. A lovely benchmark for others with large discographies/ repertoires to follow…


Get thee behind me, Sinclair. Your video persuaded me to buy the box set from Neil Hannon’s site. I had meant to cherry pick my favourite albums, but can’t not buy the full set after seeing this.
Happy to be seduced by this, and happy I resisted buying an EMPTY box from someone else. That’s £12 towards this!!

PS Neil owes you a drink at least. DC fans owe him our thanks for a real object of desire, and hours of listening pleasure.

Ross Baker

A stunning looking box, really can’t wait to get mine. I was a touch worried by the spines in that although they look gorgeous together, I feared we’d lose the original album artwork. Really glad to see the vinyl replicas inside! A couple of thoughts on your video and post…

Interesting that you said Victory… is a highly regarded album, as I’ve never actually come across that opinion anywhere, I’ve always known it to be probably the least regarded of all the ‘classic’ sounding DC albums (ie not including the indie-sounding Fanfare and Regeneration).

As for ‘flawless’, I suppose I’m still a touch disappointed that there are 19 b-sides (not to mention 60 live versions, demos, remixes, etc.) missing from the set. I suppose these would only have been possible by filling up the CD1s to maximum as well, and it’s clear Neil wanted to try and retain the original albums as individual records as much as possible. Looks like I still have a lot of singles to track down! Also missing are the live albums Live at Somerset House, Loose Cannon and Bang Goes the Knighthood Bonus Disc. It’s probably too much to ask for a ‘complete’ boxset with a discography the size of Neil’s, but I would have paid more to have everything in there!

Gareth Jones

19 B-sides missing??! Wowsers! I knew there were a few things not on here, including the National Express cassette single B-side ‘The Heart Of Rock’n’Roll’ (which was basically distorted lyrics from nursery rhymes set to the same music as the album track ‘Sweden’). But I certainly never thought there were as many as 19 B-sides not on here!! I very nearly threw out all my DC singles when I heard about this box set. Glad I didn’t!

Ross Baker

As far as I can tell, this is the list:
Hate My Way
Knowing the Ropes
Time Lapse
Chasing Sheep is Best Left to Shepherds
The Heart of Rock and Roll
Too Young to Die
This Side of Paradise
Vapour Trail
I Am
Les Jours Tristes (Feat Yann Tiersen)
Oh Yeah
Thinking the Unthinkable
Anthem for Bored Youth
All Things

Obviously a few covers and such in there, but some are originals. I might actually just burn them all to a CDr and have myself a Companion CD to listen to to finish the collection off.


Neil said recently ‘yup the box set has tons of stuff in it – but they’ll still complain’

This and the TFF box in the same weekend is gonna be a good reason to stay in

The Golden Age Of The Phonograph

I enjoyed that Paul.

It showed how a career spanning box set can be done. No room for nick nacks and things just the music, great artwork and most importantly the views of the artist on his work.

I`m more than likely different to all the fans posting on here in that I`m not really familiar with the work of Neil Hannon and The Divine Comedy. Of course I`ve heard some of the hits and I do have the `A Secret History` compilation from 1999. The thing is I`ve always been intrigued by Neil Hannon and I am aware that he is an intelligent man and that he writes intelligent Pop Music. I have often took the plunge and bought the latest studio album but never quite went through with it. When this Box Set was first announced I almosty ordered it right away but didn`t. However I became more and more intrigued and after 3-4 weeks I ordered the Box Set. I am going to have to set time aside, like most of you, to listen to this set. Difficult due to the amount of box sets/albums that will be arriving at my door until the end of 2020. However this Box Set takes priority, 99.9% of the music will be new to me, am I mad to spend £125 on something unknown to me? This is how I often get into new (to me) music. if I`m intrigued I`ll take a chance, very rarely am I disappointed and I doubt I`ll be disappointed in the musically divine journey I`m about to make.

Ricardo Sardo

Nowadays, with streaming services, like Tidal and Qobuz (by far, the best sounding ones) is much easier to listen and to dig deep into the music of every genre. Perhaps you could give it a try, I supose.

The Golden Age Of The Phonograph

Hi Ricardo, I don’t have any streaming system hooked up to my Hi-Fi set up nor do I intend doing so. Streaming services rip off the artists and I find them disgusting.

However thank you for your suggestion.