Let’s face the reality… These days the melodic power metal is not the hippest style of “hard rock” anymore. Out of the huge wave of bands coming from all over the world since the late 90’s, just a few will really stay. Although many of them like to sing, only the strong survive… and the list is short: HammerFall from Sweden, Edguy from Germany, Sonata Arctica from Finland, Rhapsody from Italy and, why not, Manigance from France… Faithful to their image, the band from the city of Pau have been cleaver enough to not overload the market with various side projects or solo records. Just as united as in the early days of their career, when they had no record deal and were just playing clubs in the South West of France, these five French guys have spent over a year, in their quiet little town far way from Paris, on the writing and the recording of this third studio album. Of course since the release in January 2004 of their last effort, “D’un Autre Sang”, they have released a live album. But “Mémoires… Live” was a gift to their true fans who have supported the band over the years. All those people who have followed Manigance on the road and at their several concert as the headliner or with other acts like Freedom Call, Royal Hunt, U.D.O, Angra, Sonata Arctica, Stratovarius or, more recently in July 2005, The Scorpions at the prestigious Olympia Hall in Paris. On stage, facing thousands of people, Manigance has learned a lot…

They are easily recognized in the metal world from their distinctive sound, which is given more of a trademark by their singing in French. In a predominantly English lyric market place where almost everyone sings (or tries to sing) in English, Manigance has made their own space. Maybe they aren’t widely known, but they have a very secure and fresh hold on the music scene in areas such as music quality and language where the majority of bands cannot compete with them. Proud of their image and their intelligent lyrics supported by strong rhythms and great melodies, in 2006 Manigance is still there and ready to face the future. There’s no doubt that this new album, entitled “L’Ombre et la Lumière” (meaning “The Shadow and the Light”), brings more improvements. The vocals of Didier Delsaux are as charming as ever, the twin guitar attacks from Bruno Ramos and François Merle are more than impressive, as is the concrete block made by Marc Duffau and Daniel Pouylau on bass and drums. In between this beautiful musical fight, Florent Taillandier on keyboards is a whirling dervish. It is also interesting to note, that for the first time ever, Manigance has introduced some acoustic elements in his music, as on “Abysse”, the intro, and on “La force des Souvenirs” a ballad which sounds different from anything the band has done in the past.

The artwork, done by Mattias Noren, reflects maybe better than ever what Manigance tries to express with their music and lyrics…

It is clear this new album will not disappoint the fans, as once again Manigance delivers what their audience deserves: aggressive and powerful melodies coming straight from the heart. The media, in France and abroad, which has given so many rave reviews on Manigance since the release of “Ange ou Demon” in 2002, can be ready to write another great chapter in the band’s history. For several years now, Manigance has obviously awakened a real interest in heavy metal music “made in France”, even if that was not their main goal. These guys just wanted to play the music they love without the idea of following any kind of trends or copying what their colleagues did… That’s maybe why today, their compositions are still fresh and full of power. Once again produced and recorded by the guitarist François Merle in his own studio, “l’Ombre et la Lumière”, whether in the darkness or in the light, is ready to shine!