a short site about The Divine Comedy

French version


October was Neil Hannon’s first band before The Divine Comedy from 1984 to 1989. The band was originally the idea of Neil Hannon and his friend Lawrence Hoy who taught him his first chords. Soon, they decided to put an announcement on the school notice board: “Starting a band, anyone with their own instruments, get in touch!”. After some auditions, the band was joined by David Graham on bass and Darren Flanagan on keyboards. After a few months of rehearsals in Neil’s room, they played their first gig, in the Rectory’s front room in Enniskillen, a weekend when Neil’s parents were out, and named the band October, after U2’s album.

After the release of a first EP, October 1st, the line-up was reduced only to Neil Hannon and Lawrence Hoy. But they still continued writing and recording the Exposition album. They sent a copy to Hot Press magazine and won a place in the finals of the Hot Press/Carling Band of ’89, in Cork. They had to call David back from university for the concert. They arrived second in the competition.

The failure of his A-levels decided Neil Hannon to become a professional musician and so, ended up October by giving it a new name and a new direction, under the influence of REM. Temporary entitled ‘The Cherry Orchard’ and then ‘The Divine Comedy’, the line-up was augmented with Kevin Traynor and John McCullagh.

See the chronology for a complete history of the band.