The Hottest 100 of the Decade is fast approaching. Triple J have given listeners the near impossible endeavour to comb through every song released since 2010 that made them cry, smile, dance or anything in between and cull them down to a shortlist of only 10 tracks.
The task is daunting, but still thousands of listeners have already done it. There’s an array of different things to consider. Do you vote for your favourite song by an artist or the one that’s most popular? Is it worth voting for a song that didn’t previously make the Hottest 100, or one that triple J doesn’t play at all? Is it worth playing it safe and voting for a previous winner, even if that means voting for ‘Thrift Shop’?
With all these things considered, as well as the near infinite amount of music released throughout the last ten years, there are still some clear contenders to take out the top spot. So, Music Feeds thought we’d do the hard work and unearth some of the songs that stand a fighting chance to take out the countdown this March.
UPDATE 14/03/20: Triple J’s Hottest 100 Of The Decade: Live Updates
Never Be Like You (feat. Kai) – Flume
It might seem obvious that the artist that has the strongest case for taking out the end of decade countdown is the artist that charted the most times through the last ten countdown. It might seem more obvious that that artist is Flume.
Since his 2011 Hottest 100 debut with ‘Sleepless’, Flume has made the Hottest 100 a total of 15 times – including one song when he was still a part of What So Not, and two remixes of other artists’ songs. Despite that, only one song of his has managed to top a countdown – 2016’s ‘Never Be Like You’ featuring Kai. Naturally, it has the strongest chance of winning out of any Flume song – even though we’re pretty sure we’ll be seeing his name a few times come March 14th.
Magnolia – Gang Of Youths
Now while Flume pretty much shot into the hearts of every triple j listener before he released his debut album, Gang Of Youths had to make much more of a steady climb. It wasn’t until the release of their second album in 2017, Go Farther In Lightness, that saw the band stamped into the consciousness of music fans around the country as one of our contemporary greats.
But, funnily enough, we think that its ‘Magnolia’ – taken from their 2015 debut album The Positions – that has the strongest chance. While it only charted at #21 in the 2015 countdown, the band’s 2017 Hottest 100 success (three songs in the top 10) can be seen as a sort of retroactive reward for underacknowledged work. Not that the lead songs from Go Farther In Lightness don’t stand a chance, but ‘Magnolia’ has become the band’s defining song. Couple that with the fact that 100 Warm Tunas has it taking out second place, there’s a mighty chance it could take out the whole thing.
Covered In Chrome – Violent Soho
Speaking of 100 Warm Tunas, since they have begun their predictions for the Hottest 100 of the Decade, one song has remained firmly at the top with no sign of moving – Violent Soho’s ‘Covered In Chrome’.
There’s not much more to say about this song that hasn’t already been said. The band made an incredibly convincing campaign to earn your vote for it, and it looks like its paying off. Don’t be surprised if you’re screaming “hell fuck yeah!” at the pointy end of this countdown.
King Kunta – Kendrick Lamar
One of the best things about the Hottest 100 of the Decade is that it’s a chance for fans to revote for songs they think were unjustly overlooked in their original countdown placement. There’s no song with a stronger chance to win based on this logic than Kendrick Lamar’s 2015 smash ‘King Kunta’.
While Lamar did win two years later with ‘HUMBLE.’, ‘King Kunta’ coming in at #2 was a loss that outraged many. Not that the actual winner – The Rubens’ ‘Hoops’ – wasn’t a good song, but the seismic impact Lamar caused with this song was undeniable and still holds today.
Royals – Lorde
The way a song has aged will clearly impact if and how it will chart on the Hottest 100 of the Decade. There’s a reason we can not expect ‘Thrift Shop’ to do that well. But, for Lorde and her 2013 runner-up ‘Royals’, we are still seeing the influence the song had in pop music today.
The slower BPM and the conversational way the song is performed has been noted as a pivotal moment in pop music as it changed the mainstream’s idea of what a successful pop song could sound like. It’s hard to imagine, for example, ‘bad guy’ had ‘Royals’ not come first and it’s equally hard to imagine that ‘Royals’ won’t feature in the top end of the countdown.
bad guy – Billie Eilish
Now that we mention it, the most recent winner automatically has a strong chance of making it because it’s fresh in listeners’ minds. Duh.
Somebody That I Used To Know (feat. Kimbra) – Gotye
On the opposite end of the spectrum, nostalgia is also sure to play a huge part in influencing people’s votes. There are plenty of “classics” to choose from, but none of them had the same success that Gotye’s runaway, world-conquering hit ‘Somebody That I Used To Know’ had. In fact, no other countdown winner has even come close to its success. Spawning countless parodies, earning countless awards, making Gotye a f*ckton of money and currently tied for best odds to take out the Hottest 100 of the Decade, you’ll be hearing those infamous xylophone notes toward the end of March 14th.
Innerbloom – RÜFÜS DU SOL
The other song paying the best odds to take it out is RÜFÜS DU SOL’s sprawling epic ‘Innerbloom’ – except this song had the opposite impact on the Hottest 100 to Gotye’s hit. ‘Innerbloom’, surprisingly, never made the original countdown, instead just missing out at #103. But the song has evolved into becoming the group’s magnum opus, and a modern electronic classic. It builds and swells before pushing back, and fills you up with euphoria once the drop hits. There’s no way the country won’t right this wrong in a few weeks, and it could just pull a miracle and take out the whole thing.
Runaway (feat. Pusha T) – Kanye West
There’s no way Kanye West won’t make the Hottest 100 of the Decade countdown. His appearance is inevitable. In fact, 100 Warm Tunas have him coming in with six different songs which would tie Wolfmother’s record set in 2005. There’s ‘Ultralight Beam’, ‘Power’, ‘Black Skinhead’, ‘Monster’, ‘N***** In Paris’ and, finally, ‘Runaway’.
‘Runaway’ has that sort of magic about it that it’s almost like Kanye knew it would repeatedly rank as his best song to date the minute he wrote it. It featured in the pointy end of many end of decade critics list. In fact, according to Acclaimed Music, it’s the fifth most acclaimed song of the decade. The four songs that top it – Daft Punk’s ‘Get Lucky’, M83’s ‘Midnight City’, Kendrick Lamar’s ‘HUMBLE.’ and Future Islands’ ‘Seasons (Waiting On You) – will all probably do very well, but Kanye’s undeniable force in the 2010 gives him an edge that few other artists have.
Voting for the Hottest 100 of the Decade stays open until midday AEDT Monday, 9th March. The countdown will then take place on Saturday, 14th March.