Rock Classics Through a New Lens: Sean Martin, Head of The Quarantined, Announces 4 New Singles Releasing in May

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Image Credit: Sean Martin

Life is not easy—a statement most would agree with, despite rare individual cases preaching otherwise. Chasing a sense of fulfillment and trying to reach a state of profound happiness is a universal experience. But life plays tricks and games, and when you think you’re starting to grasp its meaning, the universe throws yet another obstacle your way. Especially for those struggling to belong among the masses surrendered to limiting conformism, finding solace and joy amid the chaos of the world is as enigmatic as it is grueling. In today’s landscape, art reveals itself as a popular form of expression, turning feelings of rage, confusion, sadness, or rampage into inspiring songs, paintings, or sculptures.

For Sean Martin, a guitarist, vocalist, audio producer, Army veteran, and creator of The Quarantined, music has always been an oasis, offering a haven amidst the turmoil of everyday life. After 3 years enrollment in the Army and a deployment in Iraq where he saw significant combat, Sean returned home with different fears, priorities, and views. The struggle to re-discover his place in life led him to start The Quarantined, a rock indie band dedicated to encapsulating difficult emotions between the notes and chords of liberating songs.

Since 2010, The Quarantined has been fervently following the path paved by rock and grunge legends, such as Nirvana, Metallica, Guns N’ Roses, and Bowie, taking many soothingly violent and gracefully messy swivels away from the norm that turned into beautiful sounds and touching storytelling. In the upcoming months, the band will release two brand-new EPs: Aversion to Normalcy, an emotionally harsh and vivid album with seven originals that dissect the current issues and plagues of the world, and Bedroom Inc., a softer, acoustic compilation of classic rock covers. Bedroom Inc.’s demo version is currently available on streaming services. For the official release on May 1st, Sean is adding his own daring twist onto four more singles.

Ain’t No Rest For The Wicked, originally by Cage the Elephant, is the first of four songs Sean is currently mastering. In the 2010s, when fresh genres of radio pop and rap ushered in a new era of music, Sean struggled to find his place in the industry. It wasn’t until he heard Ain’t No Rest For The Wicked that he appreciated that decade’s musical side. “Once I paid attention to the lyrics, I realized that song really packs a punch,” says Sean. “For me, the lyrics are an insightful description of the decaying state of the world, and finally, someone is asking, ‘What is the problem?’ Originally, the message was delivered in a soft and wispy way, and I wanted to make it more aggressive and powerful.”

Sometimes, other people discover new meanings and see more value than the original creators. That’s exactly what happened to Sean when he discovered Turn the Page. Recorded by Bob Seger in 1971, the song was initially a frustrated gush of emotions that coexisted with Seger when constantly on tour. For Sean, however, Turn the Page tells a story of re-discovery and rebirth. For better or worse, the song also inspired a falling out Sean had with a close friend. “I wanted to share this experience with my friend, so I invited him to work with me on the project,” Sean says. “Artistic differences and disparities in visions quickly escalated into full-on arguments, and we went our separate ways. I had to turn the page on a 10-year-long friendship to stick to my beliefs, and that’s what the song means to me. It’s an expression of freedom that comes from overcoming something, whether it is a person or any other obstacle standing in your way.”

With an entirely different sentiment, Sean embarked on a mission to re-interpret, or improve, Lenny Kravitz’s Fly Away. While some projects stem from a profound connection and an unsated creative urge, others are merely a whim inspired by a humorous dare. To the frontman of The Quarantined, the 1998 Fly Away version is evocative of an unconcealed outcry from someone wanting to get involved in a cheeky ménage à trois or other kind of debauchery. With one crucial tweak in the lyrics and many changes in tempo and tone, Sean aims to present the famous song from a new and fresh perspective.

As an homage to Kurt Cobain, Sean will be covering You Know You’re Right, the last song Nirvana recorded before Cobain’s suicide. “When I listen to it, I hear a love letter and a goodbye note at the same time,” says Sean. “It’s such a powerful slap in the face of society, and the lyrics are still relevant today. I want to give it a new life and show people that they’re not alone in that ubiquitous feeling of wanting the whole world to disappear.”

Since 2010, The Quarantined, led by Sean Martin, has been reshaping the bounds of music, singing, shouting, and humming about societal and political issues boldly and with no censor. In May, the liberating rock band will release four new singles created to shock, disturb, and provoke thoughts and questions. “I want to create pieces of art that are as timeless as these lyrics and enrich the lives of listeners in new, profound ways,” assures Sean.

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