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Brian Johnson Says New AC/DC Album Is Finished

WILKES-BARRE, PA - OCTOBER 28: Singer Brian Johnson(L) and Angus Young of AC/DC perform during their 'Black Ice' Tour Opener on October 28, 2008 in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania.
AC/DC
's new album is done and targeted for an early 2015 release, according to frontman Brian Johnson.

While accepting an honorary doctorate from Northumbria University near his home town of Newcastle, England, this week, Johnson shed a little light on the project -- AC/DC's first set of new material since 2008's "Black Ice" -- telling reporters "it was brilliant" in Vancouver, where the group recorded.

"We`re done. I'm very excited, and we've got some great songs." Johnson confirmed that ailing guitarist Malcom Young's spot was filled by his nephew, Steve Young, calling the younger Young "magnificent, but when you're recording with this thing hanging over you and your work mate isn't well, it's difficult. We miss Malcolm, obviously."

Johnson said Young is currently "in hospital, but he's a fighter. We've got our fingers crossed that he'll get strong again...I'm sure he's rooting for us. He's such a strong man. He's a small guy but he's very strong. He's proud and he's very private, so we can't say too much. But fingers crossed he'll be back."

Malcolm Young is rumored to have suffered a severe stroke, but that's never been confirmed. Johnson said he proposed calling AC/DC's album "Man Down" "but it's a bit negative, and it was probably just straight from the heart." No title has been determined yet.

AC/DC is gearing up for a world tour, too, according to Johnson, who hinted at shows in the U.K. next summer.