It's been four long years since Arctic Monkeys released their last album, 'AM' - but if reports are to be believed, the wait for its follow-up is nearly at an end.

In recent years, members of the Sheffield band have been involved in various different projects - Alex Turner with The Last Shadow Puppets, drummer Matt Helders with Iggy Pop - but according to recent comments made by bassist Nick O'Malley, work has finally begun on their sixth album.

Motorbike website For the Ride report that bike enthusiast O'Malley squeezed in a test drive of a bike around the Silverstone racing track on the "day before recording began on the eagerly anticipated sixth album, started at a secret location in September." It added that O'Malley had claimed that "The new album will be out next year because ‘if it isn’t, we’ve got problems’."

The bigger question is, does Alex Turner still have his beard?

H/T: Metro