Wild Horses couldn’t hold them back: The Rolling Stones will return with Hackney Diamonds, their first album of original songs since 2005.
The band will launch the record on Wednesday at a special event in Hackney, a place that is “at the heart of the new album”, per a press release.
Hosted by Jimmy Fallon, the event will be streamed live on YouTube.
The album is rumoured to feature a number of guest stars including Paul McCartney, Stevie Wonder and Lady Gaga.
The announcement follows a teaser campaign that began with an unassuming advert in the Hackney Gazette – a free newspaper distributed in corner shops and supermarkets that covers the London borough.
Ostensibly for a local glazing firm, the blurb contained several references to Rolling Stones songs, and a phone number where fans could register interest.
Over the weekend, the band also shared a preview of one of the songs, via a website called dontgetangrywithme.com.
However, it was another elaborate ruse: after a prolonged loading screen, the site only played a short snippet of music before appearing to crash.
The band responded to supposed difficulties on social media with the message, “Sorry, don’t get angry with me” – a reference to the song’s opening lyric.
But all will finally be revealed in Hackney on Wednesday afternoon, with all three remaining Stones – Mick Jagger, Keith Richards and Ronnie Wood – due to attend.
“New album, new music, new era,” a trailer for the livestream promised.
The album will be their first since 2016’s Blue & Lonesome, which featured covers of the songs by Little Walter and Howlin’ Wolf that first inspired them to form a band in the 1960s.
Before that, their last album of original material was 2005’s A Bigger Bang, trumpeted as a return to basics, but which failed to reach the heights achieved by classics like Sticky Fingers and Exile On Main Street.
Hackney Diamonds will be their first record without drummer Charlie Watts, who died in 2021 prior to the band’s 60th anniversary tour, after suffering from throat cancer.
The star is known to have recorded new drum tracks before his death; and Richards has already confirmed his playing will form part of the new record.
“Let me put it this way,” the guitarist told the Los Angeles Times, “you haven’t heard the last of Charlie Watts.”
On other songs, the band are likely to be accompanied by Steve Jordan, who filled Watts’ seat on tour this summer.
Unconfirmed reports suggested that Ringo Starr also took part in the recording sessions, but those rumours have been downplayed.