Risque business! Rolling Stones ad banned on the Tube

London's notorious underground rail network has to deal with a continuous stream of criticisms for slow and unreliable services and the occasional strike.

However, Transport for London - the government body that runs the metro rail system - is now feeling a different kind of heat after a rock band's poster has been banned for being too lewd.

Posters promoting The Rolling Stones' forthcoming exhibition, "Exhibitionism", at London's Saatchi gallery, have been banned on London's transport, because of its artwork.

The Rolling Stones' "Exhibitionism" poster (Original design)
Provided by LD Communications
The Rolling Stones' "Exhibitionism" poster (Original design)

The neon advert shows Rolling Stones iconic "tongue and lips" design plastered over a woman's bikini bottoms, however, regulators in charge of authorizing advertising on London's underground and bus stops felt the artwork was not suitable.

The agencies who approve the ads on London's transport network, Clear Channel for bus stops, and Exterion Media for the London underground, then suggested that the lewd logo could be moved up, over the woman's belly button.

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The original poster is expected to be allowed around the rest of the country, and the newly amended poster for London will be running from Monday on the London Underground.

The advertising authority, Clear Channel told CNBC via email that the decision to change the artwork was reached "amicably."

"When we saw the artwork, we suggested to the client that it may not be approved in its current form and they removed the artwork, shifting the mouth slightly further up the body. This decision was reached quickly and amicably," said Matt Walker, head of communications at Clear Channel UK.

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A spokesperson for Transport for London said in a statement that "the advert did not comply with our advertising policy, so our advertising agent requested amendments to it." Exterion Media declined to comment.

Despite its design being challenged, the Exhibitionism artwork has already been posted extensively across the Rolling Stones website, on social media platforms and other promotional websites.

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Bernard Doherty, a spokesperson for The Rolling Stones said in a statement that they got no Satisfaction from the decision made by London's transport service.

"We are dumbfounded and perplexed at this rather silly decision. Perhaps the fact that it's the Rolling Stones and controversy seems to follow them everywhere."

It's not the first time; the British rockers have pushed the boundaries for their risqué behavior. Both cover designs for albums "Sticky Fingers" (1971) and "Beggars Banquet" (1968) have been banned by certain countries in the past.

Exhibitionism will be the first major international exhibition on the rock band, which will take over two floors of the Saatchi gallery with more than 500 original artifacts from the band. Despite opening in April 2016, tickets will start selling from tomorrow.

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