Missy Elliott has released her first album for 14 years.

The 48-year-old rapper - who hadn't released a record since 2005's 'The Cookbook' - surprised fans with a last-minute announcement on Thursday night (22.08.19) before dropping 'Iconology' at midnight, after a ''tremendous year'' so far.

Announcing the news on Instagram, she wrote: ''This year has been a tremendous year for me...I am humbled and grateful. THANK YOU for allowing me to smell the roses. You, my fans, and God are the reason I am here and have celebrated every milestone with me! So, I have a SURPRISE for you... let's continue the celebration at midnight tonight...I'm dropping a collection of new songs! Let's #ThrowItBack to a time when music just felt good and made us want to dance! Sincerely, Dr. Melissa ''Missy'' Elliott #Iconology (sic)''

The 'Work It' hitmaker's latest song collection has been produced by herself, Timbaland, and Wili Hendrix, and includes new single 'Throw It Back'.

While Missy hadn't released an album since 2005 before 'Iconology', she has appeared on several songs in the meantime, including Little Mix's 'How Ya Doin'?' in 2012, Ariana Grande tune 'Borderline' last year, and she collaborated with Lizzo on 'Tempo' earlier this year.

The album announcement comes just days ahead of the MTV Video Music Awards (VMAs) on August 26th, where the 'Lose Control' star will receive a Video Vanguard Award for her music video contributions over the years.

Bruce Gillmer, head of music and music talent at Viacom and co-brand head at MTV International, recently said: ''Missy's impact on the music landscape is indelible.

''Her creative vision across production, performance and song-writing is unmatched.''

Missy will follow in the footsteps of the likes of Rihanna, Madonna, Beyoncé, Justin Timberlake, Britney Spears, and Kanye West when she collects the prize.

She will also perform at the ceremony for the first time in 16 years.