'Condemned' to Success

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April 23, 2007

Cage9 lead singer Evan Rodaniche says he and his group have a no limits approach to creating music -- and that very well may have helped them produce a new version of "Stone Cold" Steve Austin's theme music for his film, The Condemned.

"Some groups, whether they like to admit or not, feel like they have to be a certain way -- like ‘I'm either metal, or I'm not' or ‘I'm either punk or I'm not,'" Rodaniche told WWE.com. "To me, I've always found that that makes it difficult to be creative and artistic. That's why we try not to box ourselves in. When we start a project, we do it, no matter what. We give everything a chance."

When longtime WWE music composer Jim Johnston approached Cage9 about giving "Stone Cold's" signature entrance music a makeover, Rodaniche saw it as a unique challenge. Artists such as Snoop Dogg and Disturbed had recreated Austin's theme in their own vision with "Hell Yeah" from 2000's WWE Aggression and "Glass Shatters" from 2002's WWE Forceable Entry, respectively.

WWE fans' hearts race and arenas worldwide erupt whenever they hear the glass break and watch the Rattlesnake march to the ring. However, Rodaniche felt Austin's theme failed to generate that kind of excitement beyond the walls of an arena.

"When you heard ‘Stone Cold's' [original] theme, it's not really something that you'd listen to in your car. There's really not much to it," he said. "When Jim [Johnston] called me, he gave us the lowdown on what he wanted, the kind of vibe he wanted to create. He said, ‘He's cold, but he's menacing. I want something slow, but a dangerous kind of sound.'"

Cage9 succeeds in reinvigorating Austin's theme. With lyrics written and edited by both Johnston and Rodaniche, Austin's new theme sounds new, but stays true to the original music. It is still easy to visualize the Rattlesnake lying in wait, waiting to stun a hapless opponent in the ring or Austin battling his foes as Jack Conrad in The Condemned.

"I like the way it turned out," Rodaniche said. "Sometimes when you get a project you worry that you may not like what you produce but ultimately, I like the way it turned out. I would love to have another crack at it at some point."

Moviegoers will hear the Cage9's interpretation of "Stone Cold's" theme when The Condemned opens on April 27. However, they can listen to and purchase the song when the soundtrack for the film becomes available exclusively on iTunes on April 24.

Rodaniche and Cage9 are not strangers to movie and soundtracks. They were featured in the trailer for The Dukes of Hazzard in 2005 and on the soundtrack for American Pie: Band Camp. The band, who just finished touring with Powerman 5000, appreciate the exposure they and their latest CD, El Motivo, are receiving, but they love to play live and tour. Web sites such as MySpace are fine, Rodaniche says, but there's nothing like word of mouth from an impressed audience.

"The best way to get the word out is to play in small venues, live and sleep in the vans, and blow people away," he said. "This [soundtrack exposure] is just a small piece of the puzzle."

Besides promoting their involvement on The Condemned soundtrack, Cage9 is preparing for the April 26 release of their video for their new single off El Motivo, "My Doppelganger." They are planning a U.S. tour in August and September and hope to play in Japan -- where Motivo has done very well -- before the end of the year.

"We feel we're at our highest point as a band so far," Rodaniche said. "We came to L.A. five years ago. Little things have happened, but nothing has gone wrong yet."

El Motivo is available nationwide in both English and Spanish. To learn more about Cage9, CLICK HERE.

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