Josh Todd is back and he's more pissed off than ever

a press shot of john todd & the conflicts

It’s little wonder that Josh Todd sounds so pissed off on Year Of The Tiger, the punk-edged debut record from his new project Josh Todd & The Conflict. Earlier this year, Todd’s ‘other’ band Buckcherry split with fellow founder member Keith Nelson and long-time drummer Xavier Muriel. Rather than lick his wounds, Todd got to work on The Conflict with BC guitarist Stevie D.

What was the origin of Josh Todd And The Conflict?

Last year we were touring with Buckcherry and I wanted to write songs – it was time. I didn’t know what was going on with BC and Stevie, and I ended up writing an electronic EP [Spraygun War’s Into The Blackness]. It was at that point we knew we had some good songwriting chemistry, because in the past Stevie wasn’t really allowed to contribute much in Buckcherry. One of the first songs we wrote was Year Of The Tiger, and when we wrote that I knew we had something. We were clear in the direction we wanted to go, so it never felt like Buckcherry

Is starting a new project a risk when you’re already in an established band?

Buckcherry is established but we only have a few countries we can go to. We screwed up Europe back in the day with not going there consistently. We can only really go to the UK and make it worth our while in paying for it all. We have the States, Canada, Japan and Australia and we really over-toured. I wanted to have two bands and be able to tend to The Conflict for a year and tour the whole world and build it up properly, then I’ll go back to BC and let the Conflict rest. You have to build anticipation. That is a problem a lot of bands are facing. You can’t be out on the road all the time, but if you’re resting at home you’re not making any money. This is a new band, so it was a lot of work, but this is a labour of love. There is more pressure to put out a Conflict record than there is to put out a Buckcherry record. I felt like I had to make the record of my career. Pressure drives you to go into realms that you don’t normally go into and to push yourself. I found a whole new bag of tricks on this record. It’s a lot more aggressive and it was so much fun.

So the plan is to juggle two bands?

I want to keep making Conflict records, and I will make another Buckcherry record for sure. I’m very passionate about Buckcherry and now we have new members. It’s the best line-up Buckcherry has ever had. We did a lot of touring last year, though, so it’s time to give it a rest and we’ll get back to it eventually.

You split with two of Buckcherry. Did that influence you on this record?

I had a really painful period in the middle of Buckcherry, and then we wrote 15 and it changed our lives. I’ve had a lot of turbulence in the music business. I’m going into my third act now with this record. Buckcherry was in a lot of disarray, now it is all smoothed out, but there were individuals not being up-front with me; a lot of individuals that I was really good to over time and that I had a good relationship with and it ended really poorly. That’s when I wrote [Year Of The Tiger song] Fucked Up. Everything was so fucked up, and I had this aggressive music from Stevie and it was great. It’s easy for me to access anger and pain.

Year Of The Tiger is out on September 15 via Century Media Records.

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Rich Chamberlain

Rich Chamberlain has written for Classic Rock,, Total Guitar, Nuts, FourFourTwo, Billboard, Classic Rock Presents The Blues and Classic Rock Presents Country.