One of the most anticipated album releases of the year, and possibly even the last decade, is finally going to see the light of day.

We’ll cut to the chase.

Tool have officially completed their new studio album.

News that the long-gestating, much-delayed follow-up to 2006’s 10,000 Days is likely to send fans of the prog-metal titans into fits of joy – but we know they’re also a skeptical bunch. After all, it seemed that the record was stuck in logistical limbo in the last 12 months, but according to guitarist Adam Jones himself, it’s done and due for a release later this year.

According to Crave Online, Jones confirmed that the new album is “100% done” and due in 2014, with little other detail aside from “a mention of different time signatures than their previous work.” (Hear that music theorists!? Extending beyond their 5/4 signature and the fabled Fibonacci sequence in ‘Lateralus’, shifting from 9/8 to 8/8 to 7/8). …according to guitarist Adam Jones himself, it’s done and due for a release later this year.

Jones’ revelation regarding the fabled album – Tool’s fifth overall in three decades since Undertow– was dropped during a pre-show VIP Q&A session in Portland, Orgeon, where the four-piece – vocalist Maynard James Keenand, drummer Danny Carey and bassist Justin Chancellor – are touring the US for the first time in two years. But so far, there’s been no new material aired at the shows – as Consequence Of Sound points out.

Seven years may not be the longest wait ever between albums (The Avalanches, anyone?), but even though Tool famously take extended breaks between LPs, the as-yet-untitled fifth album has been particularly troubled.

In January last year, studio sessions were halted after Carey was injured after stacking his Vespa Scooter, as Metal Insider reported. Then in February, on the eve of his Australian tour with solo side project Puscifer, Keenan gave Tone Deaf some strangely cryptic clues when asked about the state of Tool’s next release.

“I do what I have to do to get a job done,” the enigmatic frontman teased. “I’m not lazy – read between the lines.” Only to reveal in a later chat with Rolling Stone that he hadn’t even begun writing lyrics yet.

Jones then trampled fans’ hopes in an April 2013 interview with Revolver, commenting on the band’s slow production pace he hinted at friction within the lineup. “We’ve become even more eclectic and distant, so getting things done is very hard. There are a lot of other interests,” he said.

“We had two really bad things happen, things that I’m not going to get into, that set us back emotionally and mentally… We’re past them now – everybody’s recovered and that process has actually added to us focusing on being creative. Maybe sometimes bad things happen for a reason.”

Whatever the turning point, the key point is this: New Tool Album 2014.

The band were last in Australia for a national tour in April 2013. Check out review and photos of their Melbourne concert from that leg. Also be sure to check out our anniversary piece on Tool’s 1993 debut album Undertow, as we look back 20 years to how the record first set the template for the band’s unique brand of music.

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