Robbie Williams and Take That have ended months of speculation by announcing that they had reunited for a new album.
And Williams, who walked out on the group 15 years ago as he began to go off the rails, said: “It feels like coming home.”
The two sides have gradually settled their differences over the past few years, until revealing yesterday that they were back — although time will tell if it is for good.
Footage posted on the band's website yesterday shows them together in the studio — laughing, joking and singing as they worked on an untitled album to be released in November.
Last year Williams and his former bandmates shared a stage for a Children in Need concert, an event organised by Take That's Gary Barlow.
However the quintet — completed by Jason Orange, Mark Owen and Howard Donald — had already begun to work together. Williams let slip during a radio interview late last year that they had been recording together.
Take That disbanded in 1996 but reunited without Williams in 2005 to huge success, including three number one singles.
The group's new album will be their first with the full line-up since 1995 release Nobody Else and has been produced by Stuart Price, who has worked with Madonna and Kylie Minogue.
Williams spoke of his joy at rejoining his old colleagues. He said: “I get embarrassingly excited when the five of us are in a room.”
Bandmate Owen said: “Getting the five of us to be in a room together, although always a dream, never actually seemed like becoming a reality.”
This year marks the 20th anniversary of the band's formation, making their TV debut on producer Pete Waterman's ITV show The Hitman And Her.
The new album will be released on Take That's label Polydor, rather than Williams's company, EMI.