a short site about The Divine Comedy

French version


Billiardman was a band set up by Joby Talbot and Rob Farrer in the late nineties.

Joby described its sound as “five minute mini symphonies for band” promising Billiardman to be “a refuge from the commercialism of pop and the aridity of classical music”.

Joby composed all the material for the band, who performed a few shows in 2001-2002. Songs performed by the band included ‘Arc-Light’, ‘Asexual Reproduction’, ‘Croydon Grand Prix’, ‘Cyanide’, ‘Dead Space’, ‘Iliac Crest’, ‘Incubator’ and ‘Utopia’.

Live, the band consisted of
  • Joby Talbot: piano & keyboard
  • Rob Farrer: vibes & percussion
  • Ivor Talbot: guitar
  • Simon Pearson (Goya Dress; Jimi Tenor): guitar
  • Julian Pais: guitar
  • Martin Elliot (Michael Nyman Band): bass

In 2002 they produced a piece for BBC Radio 3 called ‘The Watchers’ which consisted of several of their songs. After that the band went on hiatus. However that did not meant the end of their songs.

In a certain way, Joby Talbot’s band evolved as a new line-up composed of Rob Farrer, Everton Nelson and Chris Worsey when he was commissioned by Classic FM in 2004/2005. The resulting album entitled Once Around The Sun (Sony BMG) featured 12 new songs as well as 3 Billiardman piece performed by the new line-up. The line-up played songs from their back catalogue as well as compositions from the new album at the Kaufman Center in New York City in October 2004.

In 2010, some of these songs were re-arranged again for Tom Kerstens’ G Plus ensemble’s album Utopia (Real World Records).