a short site about The Divine Comedy

French version

Liberation – Japan


Since 1996 The Divine Comedy’s albums have been edited in Japan. Mainly because of the success of Casanova. Among them, Liberation was first re-issued in England in 1996 with a new artwork before being pressed for Japan in 1997.

The Japanese release of Liberation shows the artwork of the english re-issue. So it is a (relatively) simple reprint, this one not holding bonus titles.

First, the record comes with an obi strip on which appears a logo ‘The Divine Selection’ over a coffee cup (refering to the picture of Neil drinking his coffee in Venice on Casanova), ‘The Divine Selection’ being the name under which were released the four first albums in Japan in 1996-1997 by Tristar (branch of Sony Music), as well as the name of a compilation. On the top in a black frame is the reference number of the record. On the back of the obi-strip is a reminder that the three following albums are available on Tristar, with their serial number. Many notes in Japanese are written around. On the side, the names of the group in Japanese and of the album in English are printed (as for Promenade but not Casanova or A Short Album About Love)

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On the back we can find at the same place as the UK re-issue the barcode and the tracklisting. Under the barcode we can read the serial number ‘SRCS 8420’. Under the tracklist, we can spot copyright mentions as well as a Tristar logo, instead of the Setanta one. Down left there is a Compact Disc Digital Audio logo. The right side is similar to the UK edition but with the Japanese serial numbers on the bottom and a blue round on the top. The left side is different this time: there is a white background with the names of the group in Japanese and of the album in English, printed in black (as on the obi-strip); but still with the serial numbers on the bottom and a blue round on the top.

The booklet has the same content than the UK re-issue. On the bottom of each page we find the serial number ‘CS 8420’. On the back, the copyright notice with a Tristar logo appear on the bottom.

One can notice big differences about the quality of the paper used for this Japanese issue. Thus, the picture behind the back of the record’s base is browner and less grey than in other issues. On this picture, the reference ‘SRCS 8420’ appears again.

Finally, the record itself takes up the same artwork as the UK re-issue, but differs by some points:
  • The picture is not cut on the verge of the slice.
  • On the sides, appear Tristar and Compact Disc Digital Audio logos.
  • On the bottom, the Tristar serial number replaces the Setanta one.
  • The copyright mention all around the record isn’t the same.
  • The following reference is graved on the slice: IFPI L274 PUS-967 1 ¤ ¤¤ ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤

Once unfolded, the sheet that comes with the booklet is made up of 4 pages. The first one hold the tracklisting, credits and an article in Japanese by Hideo Kogure. The following ones are the Japanese lyrics, credited to Yukako Honda, who was in charge of the fanzine L’Eretico. On the last page appears a couple of mentions, and on the top of each page is printed ‘SRCS 8420’ (not visible on scans).
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CD promo


The Japanese releases of Divine Comedy’s albums also turned out in promo version. However, those promos are different than the European ones. It is an ordinary album, and not a CD-R or a CD in a card sleeve. It is indicated as being a promo with the mention ‘SAMPLE’ is graved on the CD slice. A sticker ‘Not for sale’ with the serial number on it is stuck on its back. It seems that each copy has a different serial number, but with the three first digits being always the same (886).



Tristar released some adverts to promote the albums in Japan. This ad makes reference to the 4 first albums reissued by Tristar under the name The Divine Selection.