“My pussy teaching 9th grade English/My pussy wrote a thesis on colonialism/In conversation with a marginal system/In love with Jesus”
When Noname released her second album back in some time in the past (there really is no way of knowing), Amazon offered the opening (and possibly best) track, Self, to listen to as a sample. Early in the song she states “Y’all really thought a bitch couldn’t rap huh?/Maybe this your answer for that, a crack era/The Reagan administration that niggas are still scared of?”, and being the sucker I am for commentaries on the (still) worst US President of the modern era. Soon afterwards, she utters the aforementioned bang up the elephant line that you really should be well aware of by now, and I was sold. I immediately chucked £7.99 at Noname and her scholarly vagina. I later found out that she was also on Bandcamp, so purchased it again in the assumption that she was likely to see a lot more of the money, judging by the amount of cash Amazon siphoned off when I published a couple of books a couple of years ago. For that reason, ‘Room 25’ is the only 2018 album that could be considered so good that I bought it twice.
The thing is though, what does that line actually mean?
Yeah, sure, I know- she’s opening her sophomore album by informing us that she’s a lot more knowledgeable and aware of her sexuality now than she was on Telefone, and now has the confidence to speak authoritatively on all matters rumpy-pumpy*. But is that it? Is there not a deeper meaning? Why a thesis on ‘colonialism in conversation with a marginal system in love with Jesus’? Is there an underlying reason for that subject in particular, or did Noname** just pick something random that sounded especially complicated? Does anyone 100% understand the line? Is it held in such high regard simply because of its absurd lolness? I’m not suggesting that I wouldn’t be impressed if her vagina managed to draft that particular supposition, I would just like to sit her vagina down for a talk to discuss why that topic was chosen. If you could set that meeting up, that’d be great. I’m a former English teacher, so I imagine me and your vagina will have a lot to talk about. I’m sure she’s got some lip-smacking anecdotes.
(*Eee-ooo, ee-oo, chacka-chacka-hey, a-WOO-ga! A-WOO-ga! Ree-Ur, ree-ur, boink-bonk-boink, hubba-hubba! Boom-boom-cha. Y’know? These are technically the lyrics to the fourth song on the album, but you catch my drift, yeah?)
(**Real name, rather ironically, of Clarissa Nobacon Charlesandcamilla Mungo Chutney Sliding Dicing Relaxing Chilling B-Ball Outside School Ross From Friends Hurdy Gurdy The Real World San Francisco. She was apparently named after the starting defensive line-up of the 1991 Chicago Bears football team)
The last time Noname made this list I remarked with shock at how an album so good had ended up so relatively low. Now, two years later, I want to remark with shock at how an album so good has ended up so relatively low. A pattern is obviously emerging. Does the problem lie with me, or Ms C.N.C.M.C.S.D.R.B-B.O.S.R.F.F.G.T.R.W.S.F?
OK, hypothetically (no spoilers!), let’s imagine that Saba– the fellow Chicagoan that Noname shares many, many sonic similarities to and frequently collaborates- also released an album this year. Let’s imagine- hypothetically!- that I’ve ranked said album much, much higher than Noname. In this hypothetical situation, would I be guilty of applying the Male Glance, where art produced by admitted vulva carriers is automatically considered less worthy and legitimate than that produced by artists with glorious, swinging dicks?
Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm no. Though I would of course say that. I (hypothetically) believe that Saba’s (hypothetical) album is (hypothetically) just far superior. Besides, how can I be sexist, I frequently think of women when I masturbate, Frequently.
Noname is one of the absolute best lyricists of her time. Her lines are funny, biting, smart, nonchalant and yet always passionate. ‘Room 25’ might have the best lyrics of any album on this list. Apart from the number one album. And maybe number eleven. Then there’s number twenty seven…
‘Room 25’ has some of the best lyrics on this list. Let’s never debate that talent. It’s just that… aside from her lyrics… Noname is very, very rarely… very exciting. I would never call Noname ‘boring’, but musically she’s far to concerned with a polite jazz sound that far too often is far too affable to be that memorable.
Ooooooor maybe I realise what a mistake I made placing the album this low and now I’m just trying to justify that. She’s definitely special. You can pay what you want for the album on Bandcamp, and you really have no excuse not to.
Hmmmm, yeah, pretty perfect. Sorry Noname. Again
No, it is ironic! Because she’s got lot’s of names, see?? Don’t try and outironic me.
Yeah, that ‘lip-smacking’ line was pretty gross, sorry about that…