British rockers Editors came close to quitting before the departure of guitarist Chris Urbanowicz earlier this year (12) because they couldn't agree on the band's direction.

Urbanowicz quit the group in April (12), and although a statement from the rockers at the time insisted the split was "entirely amicable", frontman Tom Smith admits the band was in a dark place before he left.

He tells Britain's Daily Star, "It's been a long, hard couple of years and it got pretty dark because whenever we tried creating new songs it wasn't good enough.

"Chris's heart wasn't in it any more. For a year, we'd leave rehearsals feeling very negative and uninspired. Lots of things went wrong and what happened is still extremely sad. That's all I can say."

But after finding a replacement for the guitarist, Smith insists the group is ready to move forward and release new material.

He adds, "Editors had become a very negative place, so it's nice to have some positivity. It feels like we're a band who's had major surgery and replaced some organs, but we're ready to function again at last."