If you strip away everything you know about Willow Smith—her parents, her brother, "Whip My Hair," and anything else you know about the coolest 13-year-old girl on the planet—and earnestly listen to this song as a disparate product of her teenage celebrity, then you're left with just under four minutes of brilliant imagination and levels of introspection. She's a teenage artist feeling things out right now, but she's still poised enough for it to result in great music.
Labeled a "freestyle," "Female Energy" isn't rap, but a delicately—and sometimes haphazardly—sung stream of consciousness. Her flows and choices of tone on certain lyrics are instantly memorable. The song's aesthetic isn't unlike what we've heard from SZA, who's proving to be an influence on Willow—the two have recorded and performed together in the past few months. It's laid-back, thinking-woman's music from a developing songstress.
On "Female Energy," we hear Willow explore questions that adults have been grappling with for centuries. For example:
"Where did I come from right now? / I come from the planets."
Well, that's scientifically true! +1 to Willow for merging science and philosophical thought—she'd do brilliantly in a college-level English course.
She doesn't stop there though. A potentially celestial visual trip brings us further into Willow's pubescent curiosity.
"I'll just take my spirit to go / To the top of the pyramids / Let's save the world like this."
Yet for all of Willow's exploration of her spirit across "Female Energy," she's still left emotionally exposed by someone else. This is exactly how I felt about my 13-year-old love and every love thereafter:
"It's really out my control / How you feel is not my problem / I do not want you to go / But I don't know how to stop you / Whatever, I guess, whatever."
Willow's songwriting resemble a series of Jaden Smith tweets but with more authenticity and ambiance to them. Welcome to the power of song.
Stream "Female Energy" below, and remember Willow Smith's official stance on interacting with fellow females: "Conversing with like bodies, but really they're a part of me."