Marina Allen

Known for her powerfully vivid songwriting, Marina Allen prepares to release her third album ‘Eight Pointed Star’. Beautifully orchestrated, highly melodic and delivered with unrivalled lyrical perspective. Across two acclaimed records, the Los Angeles-based singer-songwriter has ripened a rare harvest, but her new album is an arrival home.


A new Marina Allen album comes like the first day of Spring. The sky has blued; a clear air descends. Through the green fuse drives a flower. Across two introductory records, the Los Angeles-based singer-songwriter has ripened a rare harvest, but her third studio album is an arrival home. Taking fragments and stories from Marina’s past, ‘Eight-Pointed Star’  deftly weaves together a new future, in what feels for all the world like a glittering, clear-eyed modern classic of alternative folk and Americana.

“As much as you can have will and ambition,”  she says, “those things often get in the way of a fluidity to life, and where you’re supposed to be. You can make yourself dizzy wanting to be somewhere you’re not. My first album, Candlepower, had this sparkly energy around it – I think of it very fondly. With Eight-Pointed Star I’m trying to harness that beginner’s mind again, while having the scars and wisdom that come from biting into the fruits of knowledge.”

Growing up in New Jersey on the East Coast, and then moving to California at the age of ten, Allen’s primary musical education was spent singing in community churches and school choirs. Her affection runs deepest for singers who in her words can really sing, from The Roches to Karen Dalton, Joanna Newsom to Meredith Monk. But these influences vanish like ghosts in the attic when she starts to sing herself. Allen has a voice that stands up to the canon – inimitable – and it’s never sounded more resolute than it does here. Her songs hold a dynamism that conjure distinctive worlds of their own.

The eponymous eight-pointed star welcomes an assembly of images. This is an album about discovery, searching with the eight points of a compass; about hope, gazing at the emanations within the eight points of a North Star; and about ancestry, being comforted by the eight-pointed stitching patterns used in quilt-making. There’s more writing here about love than in any of her previous work, and trying to understand it in its fullest sense.

Storylines jettison and dance through ‘Eight Pointed Star’  the way sunlight might catch the broken glass of a ransacked liquor store. Within those prisms are songs that sound as old as the earth itself, but they sing of artificial intelligence, watching TV and listening to coyotes harmonizing with car alarms. “Abstraction in lyricism is in crisis,”  she says, resolutely. “that inspired me and what I find to be the most powerful in art. But it’s a balance of clearly saying the things I want to say, while also listening to what is being said on the fringes of my subconscious. Those thoughts can be elusive and mischievous, but they often hold a truth that literalism can’t make out. I’m asking you to listen with me.”

Ineffable and timeless, this collection of songs holds a curiosity that’s as open to you as you are to them. Compared to the soaring and swelling compositions of Allen’s second album ‘Centrifics’  or the innocent tranquillity of ‘Candlepower’, the world of ‘Eight Pointed Star’  is more deeply addressing and open-armed. It favors a type of soul-searching that doesn’t dwell in complications, and is open to answers. You can hear contentment radiating from the music, with Chris Cohen’s production offering a full-band affair. More so now we hear the light gushing through the trees; the present-day sun that glides over both the human joys and anxieties inextricably tied to here and now.

“There was a sense when I was writing Eight Pointed Star of searching,”  she pauses. “Searching is the other side of the quarter when it comes to trust. The way that I write music is fundamentally a trust exercise – allowing your mind to be quiet, seeing what arises and following the flickers. Sitting with that feeling and making it work. I think of songwriting in general as a collage – scrapping together these ideas to create a new whole. But it’s also for looking into the future with this thing that’s supposed to give you… I don’t know, hope.”

There’s something of the easiness and intelligence of Judee Sill about this.. understated and gorgeous

Guy Garvey - BBC6 Music

Release Timeline

Monday 25th March

Album Announcement + Pre-orders live

‘Red Cloud’ digital single / video release   

5-20th April

Real Estate US Tour

Tuesday 23rd April

‘Swinging Doors’ digital single / video release

Tuesday 21st May

‘Deep Fake’ digital single digital single / video release

Friday 7th June 2024


Streaming focus track: Love Comes Back


Marina Allen wears songwriterly classicism with incredible lightness: there are tinges of Brill Building doyennes such as Laura Nyro to her conversational piano playing and lilting voice; of west coast wonder to her open-hearted and unflinching lyricism.

The Guardian - 2023’s Most Promising Musical Newcomers

Artists like Marina Allen come around perhaps once in a generation; exquisite, honest and deeply intuitive.

Rough Trade

Tour Dates

05 Apr: Beanfield Theatre, Montreal, QC, Canada*
06 Apr: Masonic Temple, Toronto, ON, Canada*
07 Apr: El Club, Detroit, MI, US*
08 Apr: Vivarium, Milwaukee, WI, US*
10 Apr: Fine Line, Minneapolis, MN, US*
11 Apr: Thalia Hall, Chicago, IL, US*
12 Apr: Mahall’s, Cleveland, OH, US*
13 Apr: Mr. Smalls Theatre, Pittsburgh, PA, US*
15 Apr: 9:30 Club, Washington, DC, US*
16 Apr: Union Transfer, Philadelphia, PA, US*
17 Apr: Royale, Boston, MA, US*
19 Apr: District Music Hall, Norwalk, CT, US*
18 Apr: Webster Hall, New York, NY, US*
20 Apr: Levon Helm Studios, Woodstock, NY, US*
13 Jun: Scribble, Los Angeles, CA, US
19 Jun: Union Pool, New York, NY, US
21 Jun: The Slaughtered Lamb, London, UK
24 Jun: Cirkus, Stockholm, Sweden**
25 Jun: Sentrum Scene, Oslo, Norway**
26 Jun: DR Koncerthusets, Copenhagen, Denmark**
29 Jun: De Vereeniging, Nijmegen, Netherlands**
30 Jun: SPOT / De Oosterpoort, Groningen, Netherlands** 

*W/ Real Estate

**W/ Ben Howard

Press Quotes

Eight Pointed Star

“A delicately orchestrated ramble” The Guardian 

“Verdant, bucolic folk” Brooklyn Vegan  

“Enchanting” Stereogum  

“Magnificent” Clash 

“Irresistible” The Fader  

“Gorgeous and ethereal” Beats per Minute  

“Outstanding on all levels.” KLOF  

“Atmospheric and dreamy” Pilerats 



“A revelation” The Guardian 

“Full-bodied, Centrifics boasts a boldness that doesn’t detract from its beauty” ★★★★ Uncut  

“Exquisite” ★★★★★ Shindig 

“Highly lyrical, sophisticated songcraft deeply indebted to the ’70s singer/songwriter pop” ★★★★ AllMusic 

“There’s a powerful sense of introspection behind Marina Allen’s music…she mulls over personal matters and pandemic-inspired reflections on self-improvement.”

★★★★ Artsdesk 

Artists like Marina Allen come around perhaps once in a generation; exquisite, honest and deeply intuitive.” Rough Trade 

“Clearly not afraid to experiment and forge new ground” Folk Radio