Keith Richards "despises" Sir Mick Jagger on occasions.

The 68-year-old guitarist's relationship with his Rolling Stones band mate is turbulent.

The aging rocker says singer Mick is as close to him as a blood relative and although they don't always get on he does love him deep down.

"You’ve got two very volatile guys who’ve been through a whole lot of stuff in their life and still somehow manage," Keith revealed to Esquire magazine.

"Sometimes I despise the man, others, I love that man so much. It’s like your brother. I never had one, so he’s my brother. That’s the way it is, bless his heart."

Mick also discussed his relationship with his band mate Keith. Mick refused to liken their turbulent history to that of a married couple.

"People say the stupidest things and that’s one of the dumbest because it’s completely different from being married when you work with someone," Mick ranted. "I work with Keith and I’ve known him for a long time."

The legendary rockers have recently celebrated their 50th year playing together. Proving they still have their music mojo, the stars have penned new tracks Doom and Gloom and One More Shot which have been included in their 50th anniversary greatest hits collection.

In the interview, Keith concluded that for him the Rolling Stones are as essential to life as oxygen and food, which is why he won't stop until he has to.

"What is there in life? There’s the air you breathe and the food you eat… and then there’s the Rolling Stones," he explained.

"They’ve just been there forever, for them, from their point of view. The world wouldn’t be complete without the Rolling Stones!"

The band performed at the O2 last month and will take to the stage in New York and New Jersey this month.