The disappearance of Manic Street Preachers' frontman Richey Edwards last year nearly spelled the end for the Welsh rockers.
But rather than fade away, the remaining members - Sean Moore, Nicky Wire and James Dean Bradfield - have gone from strength to strength.
Their comeback single A Design For Life gave them their biggest hit to date and their new release Kevin Carter went straight into the charts at No 9 last Sunday.
Yet bassist Nicky admits the band came close to calling it a day.
"When Richey's car was found near the Severn Bridge the prospect of everything was so dreadful," says Nicky, 26.
"If you have a body you can let your feelings flood out, but we were just suspended. Although the hope is still there, so is the dread."
However hard the last year has been personally, professionally the band has flourished. "It's sweet and sour," says Nicky. "I feel sorry that it took Richey to go missing before some people would accept us."
Catch the Manics on tour with chart hopefuls Laxton's Superb: Tonight, Southampton Guildhall; 11, Cambridge Corn Exchange; 12, Aston Villa Leisure Centre; 14, Sheffield City Hall; 15, Blackburn King George's Hall; 17, Hull City Hall; 18, Carlisle Sands Centre; 19, Liverpool Royal Court; 21, Exeter Uni; 22, Hanley Victoria Hall; 23, Leicester De Montfort Hall.