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Maja Lena

A bold new voice in the U.K.’s folk scene embarks on a celestial journey


FEB 27, 2023 | ISSUE 11

Maja Lena by Martha Webb

Delving into the rich and endlessly inspiring world of flora and fauna, the alt-folk albums of Marianne Parrish (AKA Maja Lena) are rooted in the rustic soil of her biophilic hobbies. Blossoming out of the band Low Chimes, Maja Lena is the latest phase of Parrish’s creative evolution, experimenting with melodies that trace a path from the terrestrial to the celestial, and everything in between. Maja Lena’s previous (and first solo) album, The Keeper, was heavily influenced by the U.K.’s lakes and landscapes, the Swiss Alps, and her time working in rhubarb gardens or on horseback. Her latest album, PLUTO, orbits vast spaces within, powered by heavy influences from sci-fi epics and new-age jams, textured throughout with intricate guitar-picking and gorgeously layered melodies. With soundscapes inspired by the fantastical worlds of Studio Ghibli, Star Trek, and Battlestar Galactica, Maja Lena explores transformation, destruction, rebirth, and the relationship between real and the imaginatively realized. With a core foundation in agriculture, ecosystems, and nature’s profound interconnectedness, Maja Lena discusses her...