Manic Street Preachers are desperate to conquer America.

The British band - who have sold millions of records around the world - say they could lose £50,000 on their US tour, which they hope will make up for their disastrous first attempt to break the country nearly 20 years ago.

Bassist Nicky Wire said: "It's just bizarre looking back to think we ever had a chance out here.

"Grunge was breaking everywhere, everyone looked like a sack of s***, and then we turned up looking like the New York Dolls. It was never gonna happen."

Manic Street Preachers were due to embark on a big US tour in 1994, but on the eve of the first concert their guitarist Richey Edwards went missing and it was subsequently cancelled.

Edwards - who has never been found - was pronounced dead last year.

Singer James Dean Bradfield said playing to small crowds in America was disheartening.

He said: "You want the crowd just to be a liquid mass. The best thing about a show is when people lose self-consciousness and with a small crowd it's just not gonna happen."