a short site about The Divine Comedy

French version

Perfect Lovesong

Lyrics & Music: Neil Hannon

Published by: BMG Music Publishing Ltd.

Originally interpreted by: The Divine Comedy

Covered by: The Divine Comedy & Duke Special / Dirk Darmstaedter


To see the lyrics, click on the name of the version you are interested in (on the left).




According to Neil [1], the idea of this song starts in 1992. But it was not played before the Regeneration era. In live in 2001, Ivor Talbot, The Divine Comedy’s guitarist at the time, would also play the recorder. At one moment in the song, he’d play the guitar with his recorder. It’s been said he broke several playing this way [2]. Since, the song is mainly played solo on acoustic guitar, but it has been played once on the piano [3].

The song is dedicated to Neil Hannon’s wife, Òrla. It is supposed to sound like a Beatles or a Beach Boys song, as is said in the first verse. The title refers to the Beach Boy’s ‘God Only Knows’ which is said as being a perfect love song. The second verse bears a reference to E.M. Foster’s novel, Where Angels Fear To Tread.

The video, directed by Ed Gill and produced by Laura Kaufman, shows The Divine Comedy as a ‘garage’ band, literally. Neil’s trying to impress the girls and makes fun of a teenager, until they all realise that the teenager has built a flying machine and all the girls are impressed by him.

[1] New Comer, 2001
[2] Freeserve webchat 10/05/2001
[3] Duke Special Vs. The Divine Comedy, Dublin, 14/10/2008