The Mighty Handful - Still Sitting In Danny’s Car album review

Brit-prog five-parter keeps the engine running

The Mighty Handful - Still Sitting In Danny’s Car album artwork

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Here’s a bit of a whopper: An album originally released in five instalments over three CDs and witha playing time of more than 100 minutes. South Londoners The Mighty Handful are a delightfully obtuse bunch. Their ranks include lead vocalist/guitarist Matt Howes, who, in another life, is the music producer of Strictly Come Dancing and Gary Mackenzie, a former drummer with melodic heavy metallers Praying Mantis, and one fourth of a barbershop quartet (step forward bassist Tommy Halley). Delivered in easily digestible three-tofive- minute chunks, from the neo-prog of Not A Dry Glass In The House, Hypothetically Speaking and Rubicon to We Had the Rock/Lost Boys and its Meat Loaf-esque melodrama, the music is colourful and diverse, with a mild theatrical sheen. Its lyrical plot line is also rather weighty, running across issues that include friendship, nostalgia, loss, lust, alcoholism and “the dilemmas that come with great power”. The band have also nabbed a genuine celebrity – Mark Benton, the much loved English actor who appeared on Strictly… – to supply the album’s narration. This has been a long time coming, but its integrity does TMH great credit.

Dave Ling

Dave Ling was a co-founder of Classic Rock magazine. His words have appeared in a variety of music publications, including RAW, Kerrang!, Metal Hammer, Prog, Rock Candy, Fireworks and Sounds. Dave’s life was shaped in 1974 through the purchase of a copy of Sweet’s album ‘Sweet Fanny Adams’, along with early gig experiences from Status Quo, Rush, Iron Maiden, AC/DC, Yes and Queen. As a lifelong season ticket holder of Crystal Palace FC, he is completely incapable of uttering the word ‘Br***ton’.