a short site about The Divine Comedy

Top Of The Pops Webchat

The Divine Comedy are one of the classiest acts around. They were formed in Enniskillen, Northern Ireland in 1989 and had just released Fin de Siecle, their fourth studio album, when we spoke to Neil Hannon from the band, backstage at Top of the Pops on 10 September 1998.

Nat asks: "How many times have you played on TOTP and are you miming or playing live?"

Neil: "This will be our fifth and I generally sing live."

joolian asks: "Neil, how did you become such a well-dressed man? Were you always more stylin' than your mates?"

Neil: "I looked appalling in my youth but one day I thought 'hang on, everybody wears jeans and t-shirts so I'll dress up like an office worker to stand out.'"

James R. asks: "I saw you live at Reading and you were fantastic! How long before you get the recognition you deserve?"

Neil: "About three and a half years."

Stephen asks: "You're one of those bands that isn't easily pigeon-holed and therefore doesn't always get a lot of press. Are you actually glad that you aren't in the limelight?"

Neil: "Well if it appears that we're never in the press then something's going badly wrong."

Karen McArthur asks: "I love you Neil! And I love the new album. I'm supposed to be seeing you in Middlesbrough but my tickets haven't come yet:-(. What's your favourite track of the new album?"

Neil: "I love you too. I cannot judge between my songs because they are all my children and I don't want to annoy any of them."

mark h. asks: "What sort of reception to you expect for Fin de Siecle? Will it be your most popular album?"

Neil: "Each album tends to bring us one rung further up the ladder but you have to watch out for the snakes."

Slampiece asks: "If you had to kiss a frog what would you like to see it turn into?"

Neil: "My girlfriend."

fido asks: "Do you have any pets?"

Neil: "No, would you like to be mine?"

astroman asks: "Neil, what did you do before you started playing music?"

Neil: "I generally played my lego but I also liked to draw - usually tanks and things like that."

Joy and Daniel: "Which band/album/song would you remember the 90s by, as we approach the millennium?"

Neil: "Radiohead, OK Computer."

jaume asks: "In the future, you will make more symphonic kind of music?"

Neil: "It really couldn't get much more symphonic that it already is."

Katie asks: "What do you think was your best live show ever?"

Neil: "Last Saturday in Dublin at the Temple Bar Music Centre. We just keep getting better and better."

Belisha Beacon asks: "When you die, who do you plan to haunt?"

Neil: "Myself."

tootie asks: "Is being on TOTP a lot of work or just fun?"

Neil: "The actually being on Top of the Pops is very dull. It's the websites that cheer me up."

Primo Levi asks: "If I wanted to buy your soul how much would it cost?"

Neil: "50p. and a bunch of grapes."

Totp: "...and a final word from Neil..."

Neil: "Live long and prosper but don't watch all those naff Star Trek spin-offs."

Top Of The Pops 09/1998