Kindergarten teacher by day and certified badass by night, Jaqualyn Taimana Williams released Knock Things Over today. Williams is passionate about promoting Te Reo Maori in Aotearoa, and has dedicated much of her time to creating valuable resources for parents and teachers to help the language thrive. Knock Things Over tackles a different cause, but is just as rebellious in nature. Described as “defiant rock”, Knock Things Over is an anthem riddled with conflicting advice for Williams’ younger self.
The track begins with five seconds of hurried advice and single guitar strums before dropping into full noise. Enter drums, distorted guitar and bass. The chorus introduces a more mellow vocal line with tight harmony before launching back into more suggestions. The production is so fun on Knock Things Over– I love the garage band punk feel; I can almost see the song being performed as I listen. Of course it wouldn’t be rock without a killer guitar solo, and the track delivers.
The lyrics advise her to “stay still, be quiet, shout out and start a riot”. The contradicting lyrics and hectic feel of the song capture exactly what it is to give advice. Who could possibly say what the right way to live life is, and yet I think we all fantasise about what we’d say to our younger selves if we had the chance. I love the punch of the hook line “knock things over”. It’s not clear exactly what’s meant by the lyric, but I think that’s what draws me to it. For me it’s about making your mark on the world through change, even if to some people the change might feel destructive.