49 Jamila Woods: Heavn


I am a tiny little bit racist, and believe most white people are


I’m not consciously racist: I don’t go on 4Chan message boards and eulogise how James Bond could never be played by Idris Elba because black people are genetically poor at espionage; I don’t complain about ‘multiculturalism gone mad’ because in the new Sainsbury’s advert there’s a 0.6 second shot of a brown person; I don’t vote Conservative; after the pub’s last orders me and my equally pathetic and ugly white friends don’t chase down people of different ethnicities and beat them to death in a failed attempt to compensate for the gigantic hole in my existence where self-worth and happiness is supposed to go. These people put a lot of work into their racism and we should respect them for that: they’re the real heroes




Dat not how you spell heavan!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


And yet a large amount of the people actually doing these things still don’t think they’re racist. Remember that, it’ll come back later





Seeing as I’m a Social Justice Cluck Snowflake, I’ve actually spent as long as I can remember striving not to be racist: I’m such a ridiculous SJCS that at one point I was worried there weren’t enough rap albums on (cough) this year’s Necessary Evil list, like people would read into the fact that Isaiah Rashad wasn’t included as incontrovertible evidence of my flagrant race-hatred


In fact, I’m so concerned with not being racist, that maybe it means that sometimes I actually end up being racist, because…

…we really don’t have time for this now




Wow, that would make no sense if you haven’t been paying attention to the previous 60+ critiques (JESUS FUCKING CHRIST!!!). It probably makes no sense whatever the context you read it in.

Where was I?


Oh yes: my inherent and unavoidable racism:

I still catch myself sometimes making preconceived judgements on people based solely on their skin colour or ethnicity, despite me making every effort to avoid such assumptions. I’ll find myself seeing a white girl stepping out with a black man and casually assuming she’s attempting to piss off her parents, or that someone of Asian descent is unlikely to be as overwhelmingly cool as I am, or that next door’s Malasian is garbage at tying Prusik knots, or the Bolivian I see down the shops owns more than four albums featuring Roger Taylor . Despite the fact that ever since I was smaller than a weevil (and they were saying I was evil)



I’ve been surrounded by liberal pussies who always made a point of how resolutely anti racist they are, I’ve still noticed these dark thoughts swirling around up there despite no single overt encouragement






I even have some funny coloured friends, which is the cast-iron proof of how not racist I am


These underlying and subconscious flashes of bigotry are still there though, because I grew up in the 80s and 90s as a white person in a white family surrounded by mostly white neighbours. Perhaps children born in the 21st century aren’t as likely to be poisoned by the culture, but I think we have to admit that there’s a giant covert conditioning for white people, I’d say it’s had a toxic effect on each white person in the west of my age or over, and people have to admit that it’s a nasty part of their make up that they now have no control over



Everyone agrees that all racists are the scum of the Earth; everyone loves their grandparents and believes they’re some of the sweetest people on Earth; everyone admits that their grandparents are racist. Yet we still don’t accept that it’s possible to be a generally nice person and be unintentionally racist: we accept that it was part of the world that our grandparents grew up in and they can’t be blamed for their views, why are we less willing to accept its existence in other cases?


Racism is bad, but unfortunately it’s a badness that can’t be willed away from white people aged roughly 30 and over. We shouldn’t be talking about how to stop racism, as it won’t be weeded out for a good few generations yet, but the least we can do is admit its ocassionally unnoticeable existence and make efforts to tackle it


We white people are all infected with a tiny bit of racism, and will be for a good long while yet. It’s rarely intentional and/or malicious, just there, a subconsciously attempted continuation of thousands of years of conditioning. That’s why we need more measures like American Football’s ‘Rooney Rule’- which requires teams to interview (interview! As in consider! Not automatically hire, you unaware racist idiots!) one person of non-white ethnicity for every coaching job- to attempt to counter such subconscious prejudice






Jesus, sorry about this, I just thought I’d covered how much I love ‘Heavn’ in the Solly review so went off on a bit of a tangent instead. Suffice to say though, I really, really, really, really love this record



It’s one of the albums of 2016 that I feel He would approve of most, so wins

10 Prince Points


Metacritic: n/a

Nope, too ‘urban’. She’s actually released another version of this record in 2017- which may well make NE2017- but even that’s not included

Length: 41 Minutes +5

Best Lyric: ‘Like yeah, open correctional gates in higher desert/Yeah, open our mind as we cast away oppression/Yeah, open the streets and watch our beliefs’ +1

Number of AMAZING songs:

Jeez, man, I dunno, I really love VRY BLK but is it amazing…?





…But Are All the Rest of the Songs Kinda Amazing Anyway? Yes (+50)

Is the last song just the first track but played on Ukulele? No -1

Total 228


4 thoughts on “49 Jamila Woods: Heavn

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