Less than an hour until we start to hear the songs that haven't been deemed Kool enough to make it into the Hottest 100 of 2020. I think I'll be able to do all the posts but I have irelander as a backup in case I feel too exhausted.
Possibly the oldest song in this list with its very early December release, and aptly so with its "Cat's In The Cradle"-esque premise. Perhaps it could be seen as a reminder to get in touch with your estranged parents while you still can. Personally the artwork for "The Slow Rush" only makes me think of how much time I wasted vacuuming up all that sand in Luigi's Mansion 3.
I have no idea why they decided to reunite 23 years after their previous Hottest 100 hit, relocate to the other side of the country and completely change their sound, but I'm glad they did. A decade on from their previous work dropped but (assuming they make the 100 with at least one track) we should really have seen this coming, given that "Witchcraft" was still memorable enough for voters to put it in the lower section of the Hottest 200 of the 2010s.
194. Kanye West (feat. Travis Scott) - Wash Us In The Blood
"Jesus Is King" lacking in big, obvious feature credits might invite an air of 'okay, you do you Kanye', though with the next single he released afterwards, he stayed true to the heavy dosage of Christian lyrics and off-the-wall production while also nabbing Travis Scott shortly after he was having his own big spotlight moment, perhaps singlehandedly allowing this unconventional single to reach the top 40.
full disclosure thewitness - villages and I were poking fun at the fact that there are 2 Pendulums that have made the countdown, the more notable Pendulum have in fact had 6 entries (Painkiller #82 2006, Tarantula #88 2006, Propane Nightmares #92 2008, ABC News Theme Remix #11 2010, Witchcraft #48 2010, Watercolour #69 2010). the "other" Pendulum made the list randomly in 1997 with Coma. sorry haha
193. BENEE (feat. Bakar & Kenny Beats) - Night Garden
There are never relevant omissions but BENEE achieved over half a billion Spotify streams of her catalogue in 2020 and more than 1% of those come from "Night Garden". Effectively it was the first single released from her debut album which almost but didn't quite break the hegemony of male fronted bands with no more than 1 woman in triple j's album poll. Considering how late in the year it was released which is always a disadvantage, it is arguable that "Hey u x" is as big a deal as "My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy" was, so we've got 9 whole years to discuss its canonization status. It's worth noting the Kenny Beats feature on this song, as it's to this day, the only song BENEE has released not produced by Josh Fountain.
Frank Ocean continues to release loose singles here and there which get about a week's attention before going back into hibernation. One of the latest, "Dear April (Side A - Acoustic)" got a bit more life on triple j thanks to this remix of Justice, which might just have been a popular request to call in because it's still unavailable on most platforms, the classic SoKo route.
Me writing this at all is probably me being overly paranoid but I feel that Great Gable kind of have Ocean Alley/Lime Cordiale/Spacey Jane upside. If this does end up making the Hottest 100, it’s probably the most impressive call I’ve ever made. I’m not gonna bother to research anything for this but I’m pretty certain Matt Corby either co-wrote or produced this song.
The guys from Sly Withers can’t write an opening line to save their lives and neither can I. Of course the difference is that I also can’t write any other line. Sly Withers released their debut album in 2016 but didn’t really get any strong triple j attention until 2019 when their Carla Geneve collaboration Lately got a decent amount of airplay. Cracks has been noted one of the first times Sly Withers have had two lead vocalists from the band sing in the song.
I remember thinking it was kind of odd when this showed up near the top of Spotify’s New Music Friday playlist in Australia at one point. merci, mercy apparently did have another single prior to this but I don’t think that one is online anymore. If you take this as her debut single though it does feel like a pretty solid statement. I think it’s been very frequently mentioned by now that triple j listeners like songs that have prominent swearing in them. Oddly enough I’ve never heard a language warning in front of this even though you’d think it would really warrant one.
In case you need more reasons to be skeptical of ARIA's trustworthy status, know that this song probably only missed out on an ARIA Song Of The Year nomination because it took weeks to even get tracked. Hefs (who you might understandably assume is more than one person) is probably doing eetswa anyway with a near guaranteed lock for next year's nominations. If you find this song particularly facetious, you must remember that it was actually released in 2019, a different era all things considered.
179. Pop Smoke (feat. Lil Baby & DaBaby) - For The Night
While posthumous success is often short-lived or at least peaks quickly, Pop Smoke has been one of the less obvious commercial successes of 2020. He was already starting to make serious waves in the New York drill scene, and even got his first Billboard Hot 100 entry just a month before he was killed in a home invasion. His debut full length album was not quite finished at that point so 50 Cent took it upon himself to executive produce the project, possibly leading to a different mix of sounds compared to the mixtapes he'd released prior. For the next 6 months (and counting), various songs from the album have taken on varying amounts of otherwise out of nowhere success, one of those being "For The Night" which is his longest charting single in Australia though for only 1 week was it his highest. Educated scholars know that the funny team up of Lil Baby & DaBaby has happened 3 times prior to this, on "Baby", "TOES" and the remix of "Life Is Good".
177. Run The Jewels (feat. Pharrell Williams & Zack De La Rocha) - JU$T
Assumably 'South Dakotan mountain range' was too many syllables to fit in, and in fairness, it only applies to two of them. At this point it's a question of when, not if Zack will turn up as he's now appeared on the last 3 Run The Jewels albums, with the metadata poisoning 4th album seeing a return to some of the highest accolades the duo have received, as well as previously unseen chart success, which likely would have even netted Billboard chart hits if the album were conventionally released on a Friday. Keeping up traditional form, What So Not waited until the next Hottest 100 tracking year before releasing a remix of the song, obviously to avoid another vote split.
Previous entry (Run The Jewels):
Close Your Eyes (And Count To F**k)
Previous entry (Zack De La Rocha):
Close Your Eyes (And Count To F**k) (with Run The Jewels)
Perhaps Australia's greatest contribution to viral video canon is Democracy Manifest, a video where a man is spotted by police at a restaurant and arrested without explanation, punctuated by his loud, memorable remarks. He was rumoured to be identified as a Norwegian chess grand master named Paul Chales Dozsa, who has since passed away, but in reality he is an Australian who was misidentified as a repeat dine & dash offender, and released after the misunderstanding. Though he's been incognito for the last decade, he amazingly manages to show up in the music video for The Chats' sequel to "Pub Feed".
Seemingly just to frustrate chart watchers, "Toosie Slide" seemingly Bradbury'd its way to #1 in the US & UK, while unquestionably being less successful both in the long & immediate term than his other #2 hits of 2020. Basically I'm saying we can't let misleading chart statistics slide.
The most interesting thing about this song is not that it is effectively two songs jammed into one with limited cohesion. It's not that this early release song proved a curious incident considering the *checks notes* 2020 that followed it. No, "Life Is Good" has a distinction of being the most viewed video on YouTube released in 2020 (by an almost 2:1 margin). You could possibly attribute it to the fact that it is a fun, entertaining video, but more likely, if you've used YouTube in any capacity in the past year, you have probably seen this video turn up on your right hand side suggestions constantly, even if you're not listening to anything remotely similar. One can only imagine the hundreds upon hundreds of YouTubers whose careers have been burnt to dust by the algorithm so you can see Future pretend to serve fast food.
Depending on who or when you might ask, Khalid's big 2019 hit "Talk" was either a solo song or a credited collaboration with Disclosure. It was made more clear with their next team up "Know Your Worth" right from the gate, and by sticking both collaborations onto their album, Disclosure were able to collect some decent streaming numbers for their otherwise hit-scarce third album. Khalid's here to remind you that you don't know your worth, and that's what makes you worthical.
I was under the false impression that this was a post-album single but this came out more than a month before I’M DOING IT, E^ST’s debut album. I think I thought this because triple j didn’t playlist it until after the album came out. This was the fifth single from the album and fourth one to come out within the 2020 Hottest 100 eligibility period so I’m kind of surprised this is seemingly her biggest this year but it does have that very huge pop chorus I suppose.
A moderately curious thing happened earlier in the year where we managed to have a #1 ARIA Single and #1 airplay single both simultaneously not featured on each other's charts. triple j clearly weren't fully convinced themselves, and needed some shit with some BLM in it, while this song allows us to ponder how many people were heavily invested in what is arguably the most popular 2020 song.
155. Travis Scott (feat. M.I.A. & Young Thug) - FRANCHISE
In yet another move to call to question Travis Scott's aura of cool, in late 2020 Travis Scott became the first celebrity in nearly 30 years to team up with McDonalds for a meal called The Travis Scott. Possibly in on the joke, later that month he released "FRANCHISE", which through massive first week sales, became his 4th US #1 hit, and made him the first artist to ever have 3 #1 debuts in the space of a year. M.I.A. gained an odd distiction as possibly the only female rapper to have top 10 hits in 3 decades, though this is somewhat marred as only a week after the song was released, a remix version was put out to feed the demand for a version without M.I.A. on it.
Previous entries (Travis Scott):
HIGHEST IN THE ROOM
Previous entries (M.I.A.):
Previous entry (Young Thug):
I Know There's Gonna Be (Good Times) (with Jamie xx)
Hayley Williams of Paramore (I’m just staying consistent with B.o.B’s hit single Airplanes) released her debut solo album in 2020 and this was the lead single from it. triple j never really played Paramore before but this got a lot of attention, with the album even getting featured. It probably helps that this song in particular sounds very little like Paramore. It was a running gag on the triple j text line that the ‘give in’ in this song sounds more like the word Kevin, perhaps this song was written from the point of view of Trevor.
When Ball Park Music dropped this lead single they announced that their album would be called Mostly Sunny. Ultimately they decided it didn’t really fit and went the self-titled route instead. While this was still the opening track of the album it really does feel quite disparate from the rest of the album. It is Ball Park Music at their most Ball Park Music with its big shiny hook though it does foreshadow some of the instrumentation choices from later on with the breakdown in the chorus.
150. Dune Rats (feat. K. Flay) - Stupid Is As Stupid Does
Although this is essentially Dune Rats' first ever song with a feature, K.Flay has always had decent support on the j's so it's not too far-fetched for them to go in this direction. In fact, if just for the fact that this puts them within a degree of separation of Danny Brown, this song is a great idea. It might have a long way to catch "Scott Green", "Bullshit" or "Red Light Green Light" in Spotify plays, but it's pretty easy to see how this clicks with the wider triple j audience even outside of the Dunies' immediate fanbase.
A popular Twitter account has informed me that there is zero difference between this song and Bad Things by Alison Wonderland. If this cracks the Hottest 100 it should be a very clear indication to Wafia that she should put the word Good in all of her song titles from now on. This has nothing to do with this song in particular but Wafia was apparently born in The Netherlands and I had no idea until now.
The rapper and producer joined forces for an album which was accompanied by a short film - or the other way around, I'm really not sure - in which they go back in time to prevent the album from being leaked. The film is absolutely hilarious and the album is surely the best one of the year that mentions schnauzers. Kenny's eclectic production jobs in recent years have involved everyone from Vince Staples, BENEE, Zack Fox, IDLES and even Ed Sheeran. Denzel's charismatic performance distracts me from realising that "DIET_" actually squeezes in two verses and two choruses in under two and a half minutes.
Nothing But Thieves are weirdly popular in The Netherlands. You might say it’s just because they have a song called Amsterdam but Trip Switch was already a minor chart hit before that. The version of Impossible that caught on in The Netherlands is a live version recorded at Abbey Road Studios or the Orchestral Version as it is known since it features an orchestra. triple j only played the original single version as far as I’m aware. The melody and general mood of this feels reminiscent of No Surprises by Radiohead, just like a 2020 song by an Australian band that may or may not have appeared by this point.
What Can I Do If The Fire Goes Out? (Like A Version)
I’m a guy and BENEE is a snail. I don’t know how to react to this plot twist. Lockdown hit pretty hard for a lot of people. The effect that it had on BENEE is that she became really fascinated by snails and ended up writing this song as a result. This might sound like something I made up in order to mention the pandemic in as many blurbs as possible but I assure you it is not. The quirkiness of the production lines up with the quirkiness of the subject of the song quite well.
It is likely that Baker Boy wrote the lyric 'I pray to God that this club don't close tonight' prior to the pandemic, and probably the whole song too because who would rudely release a song with the same title as another Australian artist at the same time on purpose? It is hard to note much about the accolades of current Baker Boy singles because they tend to always be playing catch up, as he's lapped up awards and AFL promo slots instead this year for "Meditjin", while "Cool As Hell" became his first Gold certified single.
Dom Dolla broke out into the Hottest 100 in 2019 and for the only single he released in 2020 he has maintained a similar sound although there isn’t a guy talking about San Francisco on this one. He’s not alone this time however as this is a collaboration with fellow Australian producer Sonny Fodera. I swear I read somewhere that he’s based out of the UK now but I can’t find it. Note that if you switch the e and the o in Fodera you get Fedora. I’m kind of amazed this hasn’t become a Skegss situation for me.
So they've gone from their early rock styles which were somewhat blues- and soul-influenced, to almost a decade later where it's safe to say that the soul has all but dissipated. However to be a bit more objective, I'm sure they'll be far happier if this makes it in given the late release probably explained why "Live In Life" just missed out last time.
128. Megan Thee Stallion (feat. Beyoncé) - Savage Remix
A rare feat in 2020, this remix of the already very successful Megan Thee Stallion single proved so potent that people still actually listen to it more than the original version. Under extreme technicalities, it put Beyoncé in an elite group for having scored #1 hits in 4 different decades, okay.
With the debate still being waged 13 years later about "Knights Of Cydonia’s eligibility, one more to throw into the ring is "death bed", a song that was initially released on Soundcloud to viral success, but was unable to get a proper release for a year due to the uncleared sample. Thus when it finally was released, it quickly rushed up the charts as that release became apparent, and those early investors passed the baton to those discovering it through said charts. It also might help that Powfu has some slight tenure as the son of the lead singer of Canadian group Faber Drive, who racked up several hits in Canada in the late 2000s & early 2010s. No doubt taking inspiration from the likes of gnash before him, Powfu rides on the talent of his sampled feature artist to get the listener through his hammy rhymes.
It’s kind of hard to believe but Tkay Maidza hasn’t cracked the Hottest 200 at all after 2016’s Simulation despite releasing plenty of music in the years following. Thankfully it’s looking like this will be reversing that trend. It turns out all she had to do was get these mans all shook. Shook is the main single from her EP Last Year Was Weird, Vol. 2 (I am currently resisting the urge to make an obvious joke about the title). I feel like she more overseas attention with this than before but I could be wrong. As a fun times high energy fast paced jam it should go down well today, whatever day it is that you’re reading this.
Up In There is track 5 on Ocean Alley’s third album Lonely Diamond. triple j listeners voted it their seventh favorite album of 2020. This is one of the slower moments from that album. I’m not sure if this was officially a single but triple j played it a decent amount.
Probably not a Thom Yorke diss track. We saw the effects of 2020 on many album releases, with Hockey Dad's long-awaited "Brain Candy" pushed back to July. The only thing between them and an ARIA #1 was the fact that it fell right after a Taylor Swift release. Unfortunate timing aside, it was also a sign that the Wollongong duo are continuing to gather more steam. "Good Eye" has their usual accessible surf rock riffs but some really well mixed drumming so it's not hard to see why fans are on board.
The biggest single from YUNGBLUD’s second album Weird! (random exclamation marks are always a positive in my book) It would be kind of, um, weird if this makes the Hottest 100 when 11 Minutes did not but I have this, um, weird gut feeling about it. “cotton candy” explores the theme of sexual freedom and how it’s not, um, weird. It’s kind of, um, odd that this manages to sound like both The Less I Know The Better and Circles (the Post Malone one of course) at the same time.
The title track of Cosmo’s Midnight’s second album. It’s somewhat impressive they’re already up to two albums since some dance artists don’t exactly prioritize albums. I think this was the first song they released where the main vocalist was Patrick from Cosmo’s Midnight. I think he also had some vocals on C.U.D.I but that also had a bunch of other people I believe. This also managed to sneak in at #40 on the New Zealand Heatseekers chart for a week. It likely wouldn’t have gotten those two ACI weeks otherwise!
When I first heard this I thought this sounded a lot like Empire Of The Sun even though the more obvious conclusion is that this sounds like the 2019 Hottest 100 entry named Circles (you know, that one). If this ends up missing the Hottest 100 it will probably be attributed to the fact that it has only recently received a single push and begun charting well. This is despite the peak of its triple j airplay being several months ago before it was an actual single. This got an early radio push in The Netherlands as well and even was in the Spotify top 50 there for a bit but recently has re-entered there and got a new peak as a result of its international push. I guess this would be building to a well thought out point about the impact of international vs. regional streaming playlists if Hijinx was the one writing this, but sadly for you you’re stuck with this unsatisfying meta conclusion.
When writing "Smells Like Teen Spirit", Kurt Cobain has said that he was attempting to make a Pixies style song. Splitting the difference, Violent Soho chuck a very "Smells Like Teen Spirit" type riff into their song that otherwise sounds like "Wave Of Mutilation". The success of "WACO" made the follow up album "Everything Is A-OK" quite hotly tipped to be honest, and indeed it debuted at #1, the 2nd of 4 Australian albums to mostly block Dua Lipa from spending more weeks at #1.
I’ve written a fair amount about Ruel already so let’s talk a bit about Cautious Clay instead. He’s an American R&B singer who worked as a real estate agent for a couple of years before deciding to pursue music full-time instead. He’s release a few EP’s and has also done some co-writes for other artists. Notably his song Cold War was sampled on London Boy by Taylor Swift, on that album she released a couple of decades ago. I think he sounds fairly nice on “say it over”.
In 2020 Pendulum, the drum and bass group from Perth, released 2 new singles which were their first new material in 10 years. This is seemingly the more popular of the two but I’ve been wrong before. It feels like a continuation of the sound they’ve had previously, though there’s an acoustic guitar bit in here for about 15 seconds. You might notice that the music video for this has some subtle commentary on COVID-19.
Hot Chicken is track 10 on Ocean Alley’s third album Lonely Diamond. triple j listeners voted it their seventh favorite album of 2020. You might notice that the phrase ‘Hot Chicken’ never actually appears in the song. I distinctly remember the Ocean Alley Twitter account promoting this with a Simpsons meme, I don’t remember the actual content of it.
This is track 3 on Violent Soho's rather good 5th album "Everything Is A-OK". lol jk I haven't heard it. The Violent Soho train is pretty unstoppable at this point though, and so although this album didn't appear to have as much hype surrounding it as "WACO", no one should be surprised if they manage at least a couple of entries. It's pretty standard sounding for them too, with Boerdam's vocals kicking things off and the guitars coming in just in time for a catchy but repetitive chorus.
Alright time for the 10,000 word essay on my upbringing. Alternatively, I would say it's worth watching the lyric video for this song if only for the fact that it goes so far as to lean into Tones and I's inflections in a seemingly self-aware manner. Also the huge international success of Tones and I means that triple j's Facebook comments are probably not the worst sort of cesspool as I don't think anyone there has tried to photoshop white supremacist slogans onto her photo shoots so she can be discredited as a racist by fat-shaming, death-threat making stan Twitter. So keep in mind that this is who you're siding with when you go to post your fresh takes about how your piss-weak ears can't bear her music.
In an effort to prove that they're not just ripping off '90s Britpop, DMA'S made the bold move towards '90s Madchester. It should perhaps come as no surprise that DMA'S are one of the few modern Australian bands who can lay claim to a top 5 peaking album in the UK.
Before voting opened for the 2020 Hottest 100, Kyoto had been played only once on triple j. Since then it’s been played a few times which seems to indicate triple j was caught somewhat off guard by it getting a decent amount of Hottest 100 votes, even if most of them are from Twitter users. I’ve already written about this song recently so instead I’m gonna mention the Iris cover Phoebe Bridgers did with Maggie Rogers. It charted on the Hot 100 pretty much exclusively from one day of Bandcamp sales and it was surely one of the most unique chart moments of 2020.
Though this is Hefs' first song to crack the ARIA top 50, he's definitely gotten quite a bit of success with his peculiar blending of hip hop and early Martin Garrix drops. Despite never charting, previous single "No Effect" has nearly matched Australia's population in streams. This song was released at the inauspicious time of late November which as we've learnt, can reduce even potentially the biggest hit song of all time to a mere top 80 finish as reputation is still building.
107. DOPE LEMON (feat. Winston Surfshirt) - Every Day Is A Holiday
This isn’t even doing particularly well in projections but both artists involved here have been underestimated in the past so I’m not taking any chances. This is one of those weird (but certainly not bad) collabs that by finding a middle ground ends up sounding like something neither artist has really done before. It feels dreamier than anything by Winston Surfshirt and more electronic than anything by Angus Stone (aside from all those European remixes).
After 14 years, Panic! At The Disco make their long awaited return to the Hottest 100. Certainly their sound has changed quite a bit since then. *gets a phone call* Hey, I haven’t heard from you in a while. Huh? Okay. Yeah, that’s my mistake. *hangs up the phone* I am being informed that Heavy Weather is actually by The Rubens and not Panic! At The Disco. Even though this certainly sounds like it could be a hit Hot Hits Australia decided it was a more logical move to keep Live In Life on the playlist for an eternity instead.
I swear I’m not just saying this because I don’t think this is exactly the most interesting song in the world but the light guitar in this does remind me a bit of iconic banger Rum Rage melodically. You might think it is very on the nose to release a song called ‘distance’ in the year 2020 but it’s not actually about That. Instead it’s about Ruel avoiding someone he had a break up with because he still isn’t feeling great about the whole situation.
In 2020 Machine Gun Kelly made a pivot towards pop punk (with heavy involvement from blink-182’s Travis Barker) which meant that he suddenly got a lot more attention on triple j. Something that would seem fairly unlikely prior to this outside of some random guest feature maybe. I remember Bridget Hustwaite tweeting that she had no idea he was a rapper before this. I assume the reason Machine Gun Kelly is doing a concert for aliens is that they’re super advanced aliens that are immune to COVID-19.
"My High" has been nominated for a Grammy Award (which will be assumably earned in March) which if nothing else, proves a broken clock to be occasionally correct. Disclosure's performance in this countdown comes down to whether or not the voting landed on one of their trademark 'good weeks' or those funky bad weeks that go between them. Amine makes a bold decision to team up with slowthai on this song, someone who is notorious for never f**king up anyone's high.
It’s probably a good thing I waited a little bit to write this because Middle Kids just announced the album that this is a lead single for. It’s called Today We’re The Greatest and it comes out in March (new single Questions is quite good I reckon). Hannah Joy from the band was inspired to write this song after seeing a sign that said ‘BE NICE IT’S NOT THAT HARD’ and noted that the aggressive tone contradicted the message a bit.
this is not bad and an unlucky #101. 1 vote each day for me, all in all I was maybe hoping for at least Paranoid Android LAV but I didn't think Life Is Good was guaranteed for H200 either. I was not a fan of the drill promo thing that they kept playing which made me keep thinking that Home and Away was going to make it I feel like today flew past and it was a lot of fun
also while it was good to contribute to the blurbs, my annual well done to villages and Hijinx for doing far more than me as always
(also again, one great thing this year was that I knew a lot more of the songs both days because I grabbed all of the WT songs at one point for my mega playlist - thanks for 392414 for all that as well) Last edited:
There were 8 songs that had blurbs prepared that did not make the top 200, here they are:
Ball Park Music - Paranoid Android (Like A Version)
Last year, Denzel Curry took on Like A Version with a cover of a 23 year old song beloved and oft canonised by triple j lists, and took it to a roaring success with the equal highest ranked Like A Version in Hottest 100 history. I'm not saying that history is gonna repeat, but all those initial stats were repeated again when Ball Park Music had their run in with the format. On an unrelated note, this year "OK Computer" will be as old as "The Dark Side Of The Moon" was when it was first released.
It’s Nice To Be Alive
All I Want Is You
She Only Loves Me When I’m There
Everything Is Shit Except My Friendship With You
Trippin The Light Fantastic
Exactly How You Are
The Perfect Life Does Not Exist
Day & Age
Jaguar Jonze - Rabbit Hole
To hear a potential Eurovision entry on triple j is an unexpected turn of events though without the context you'd probably never connect the dots anyway. "Rabbit Hole" was an unsuccessful entrant in Australia Decides, which turned out for moot when covid-19 put Eurovision on hold for a year (where Montaigne is expected to represent Australia with a new song). Incidentally Jaguar Jonze contracted the virus herself fairly early into the pandemic. It's not the only misfortune she had, as in fact during her live performance on TV of this song, she managed to dislocate her shoulder, though still maintained choreography all the way to the end.
Mia Rodriguez - Psycho
The modern era of social media outreach can make for some peculiar situations. Mia Rodriguez is one such extreme, as a content creator on TikTok with over 2 million followers who also uploads her music to triple j Unearthed and plays support slots for the arguably less famous Lime Cordiale. As tends to be the case, her career started off by creating a YouTube channel in aspirations of being like Troye Sivan, which didn't work out until she switched to http://musical.ly. If nothing else this is a litmus test of how readily an artist can prompt their fans to vote for a radio poll that they may have otherwise never heard of.
Rina Sawayama - XS
"XS" could be argued as the first true '2020' song, and as such, least blatantly obvious. Impressive considering it was recorded in 2019. Beneath the surface of over-the-top 2000s inspired pop is an ironic message of consumerism inspired by all the brands & influencers posting about their lavish products & lifestyles next to their posts about Australia's bushfires.
THE SCOTTS, Travis Scott & Kid Cudi - THE SCOTTS
You may well consider Kid Cudi an elder stateman or perhaps just a middle child in modern hip hop right now but he's only recently seeing his biggest dividends, including his 2nd best ever opening album figures, and of course his first ever #1 hit with "THE SCOTTS" (Kid Cudi's real name is Scott if the serendipity wasn't clear). This is all with a song that debuted on Fortnite, giving Travis Scott yet another Guinness World Record, this time for the biggest virtual concert. As a moderately interesting side note, Kid Cudi can also now lay claim to having made the Billboard Hot 100 under 4 different guises, as you can also include KIDS SEE GHOSTS, and of course, Artists For Haiti. With his JACKBOYS project about a year ago, Travis Scott is accumulating them too.
Previous entries (Travis Scott):
HIGHEST IN THE ROOM
Previous entries (Kid Cudi):
Pursuit Of Happiness
Just What I Am
BENEE - Happen To Me
2020 was a big year for Weird Fishes/Arpeggi by Radiohead. Kelly Lee Owens and Lianne La Havas both had (very different) covers of it on their respective albums and the opening track of BENEE’s debut could perhaps be considered fairly reminiscent of it as well. Considering she’s gotten her pop success with her more upbeat songs you would almost forget that she can do these more reflective songs as well. She takes a deep dive into her anxieties on this one.
Find An Island
Powderfinger - Day By Day
2020 was a big Powderfinger year despite them not even being an officially active band at this point in time. A few months after a one off charity performance they released an album of previously unreleased songs from their active period, of which this was the main single. triple j didn’t play anything from it that often but they’re a very popular band so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that a lot of people voted for this regardless. I am not looking forward to doing the previous entries table. It will be kind of funny if they troll Hilltop Hoods out of tying them (and Foo Fighters) for most Hottest 100 entries with this admittedly.
Pick You Up
The Day You Come
Don’t Wanna Be Left Out
Good Day Ray
My Kind Of Scene
(Baby I've Got You) On My Mind
Love Your Way
Bless My Soul
Lost and Running
I Don’t Remember
All Of The Dreamers
The Killers - Caution
Hindsight will tell us whether this will be a "Battle Born" situation in which they only managed #136 with "Runaways" or if it will be like their last album cycle where "The Man" became their 4th highest finisher. That's my roundabout way of saying that it would be impressive for The Killers to make the Hottest 100 with all but one of their main studio albums. In 2020, they sourced mostly new production including the likes of Jonathan Rado of Foxygen fame, and called upon guest musicians like k.d. lang, Weyes Blood, Tik Tok favourite Lindsey Buckingham, and aus-charts favourite Adam Granduciel for help. Lead single "Caution" perhaps didn't eclipse the chart performance of "The Man" but has been well received by fans and critics alike, with a catchy singalong chorus and a guitar solo from Buckingham for good measure.
Another year, another fun weekend of countdowns. Although I only got a couple in the 100s this year, that wasn't exactly unexpected. As always there was still plenty of great music that was worth celebrating and a couple of surprises along the way to keep things interesting.
Many thanks to Hijinx, irelander and villages for the blurb writing, table updating, posting and running of the show. You guys really put a huge amount of effort into doing this and I'm sure I'm not the only one who finds it adds a lot to my enjoyment of the Hottest 100.
A shout-out also to those who joined in the chat for adding more fun to the day (and putting up with a few lame puns from me). As I think I've mentioned before, it's good to have a place where we can share our thoughts on the countdown and have a bit of a laugh without wandering into the arguments and insults that can often come with the territory.
I'll definitely be hanging around to see what other people rated as their favourites and hopefully join in on a couple more broadcasts soon. Maybe this year I'll finally get around to doing a countdown of my own, technology permitting
It's my time I again tracked Warm Tunas, using a script to record it at all hours, producing a total of 295 updates over the course of 45 days (mostly updating every 3 hours, until 12 days ago it switched to usually every 6 hours for some reason - and not at 12 and 6 am/pm like you'd expect, but 3 and 9). The top 200 first appeared on 9 January. Here's how the total vote count looks and compares:
It always seemed like the numbers were lower, but with the total votes also dropping significantly, the sample size isn't much smaller than 2019. Here's a graph of how the votes have progressed over time each year: https://i.imgur.com/7aiqJLO.png
Here's my table, in the same format as EOD - I've condensed it to 1 update per day, and I have TI/HP (times in / highest position) columns on the right to help reflect the updates that aren't shown.
These are the highest songs on WT that didn't make the Hottest 200 (you can see the rest of them stacked at the bottom of the 2nd image above):
Don't Break Me
Northeast Party House
Day By Day
Hellbringer [Ft. Jamie Hails]
In Hearts Wake
Paranoid Android [triple j Like A Version]
Ball Park Music
This Selfish Love
Dying To Feel Alive
Petty Isn't Pretty
i miss u
Jax Jones & Au/Ra
I Can't Breathe
Perfection's A Thing And You're It
It's easy to draw a comparison between "XS" and Charli XCX's "Gone" last year, which fell from #69 WT to #188 H200. "XS" falling goes deeper though because it actually started WT as high as #13 on the first day - I was surprised its popularity was widespread enough for that but assumed it would make the H100 based on being that high, but it fell so much throughout that it didn't even make the H200. As late as #102, "Caution" was my #101 prediction (which would've been quite something if 2 of the most popular songs on this site this year were #101-#102), and it's surprising how far it fell when "The Man" in 2017 was exactly the same position on WT as H100. I also expected Powderfinger and Jax Jones to go up from WT, and Northeast Party House's drop is a surprise when their songs at #79 and #97 on WT last year both made the top 135.
"Shook" (#31 → #125) holds the 'honour' of the highest song on WT that missed the H100 (higher than the highest ones in EOD and 2019, but not as high as Luca Brasi who went #28 → #118 in 2018), followed by Stand Atlantic's "Blurry" (#44 → #134) which is fitting as they had the highest song that missed H200 last year, and Pendulum's "Nothing For Free" (#45 → #115) which is also fitting after "Witchcraft" fell almost 100 spots in EOD.
These are the highest songs in the Hottest 200 that never made WT:
There's a major asterisk in here with Stormzy's "Audacity" (#97) - you'd think the WT update at 9am yesterday would've been the final one, and as of that point "Audacity" had never been seen in WT, but it actually updated again at 6pm (at which point the Hottest 100 countdown was up to #23) with a thousand more votes (presumably from people who hadn't posted their votes before but did so during the countdown), and in that update, "Audacity" appeared for the first time (as did Oliver Tree's "Let Me Down").
155 of the Hottest 200 were in the final WT update, and 162 made WT at some point (compared to 155 and 166 respectively in EOD, and 162 and 177 respectively in 2019). The 'formerly in WT' ones include 2 that made the top 100: "Way Down" (#72, higher than "Weightless") and "Lemonade".
These are the biggest climbs from WT to the Hottest 200 (among songs that were in the final WT top 200):
The Kid LAROI
Laugh Now Cry Later [Ft. Lil Durk]
Audacity [Ft. Headie One]
Every Day Is A Holiday [Ft. Winston Surfshirt]
say it over [Ft. Cautious Clay]
In Her Eyes
The Jungle Giants
No Plans To Make Plans
No Time To Die
GO [Ft. Juice WRLD]
The Kid LAROI
Tones And I
Addicted To The Sunshine
Under The Thunder
Skegss perhaps follow in the trajectory of their "Here Comes Your Man" LAV last year which was an 'only formerly in WT' one and made #90, though at the same time, "Save It For The Weekend" only climbed 7 spots, so it certainly varies. "SO DONE" completely leapfrogged "GO" (and got a major 'WHAT' reaction from me when it showed up), and "Gimme Love" went from Joji's 3rd highest song on WT to his highest on H100; the 2 Mac Miller songs also went from 32 spots apart on WT to next to each other on H100.
And the biggest falls (among songs that did still make the Hottest 200):
JU$T [Ft. Pharrell Williams/Zack de la Rocha]
Run The Jewels
Hands Like Houses
Race Car Blues
Fucked Myself Up
Black Fingernails, Red Wine [triple j Like A Version]
Kingslayer [Ft. BABYMETAL]
Bring Me The Horizon
Only Time Makes It Human
Nothing For Free
I WANNA BE HERE
Charlie [triple j Like A Version]
Pick It Up Again
Is Everybody Going Crazy?
Nothing But Thieves
Three Leaf Clover
Now, there's more WT-related information to dispense, because around 2 weeks into it, the creator added a new feature to filter the list into 5 different components: instagram posts, DMs and stories, twitter posts, and reddit comments. Furthermore, you could select any combination of the components - creating a total of 31 different possible sets of results. I did not attempt to track all this (partly because 31 charts that update every 3 hours would be a lot of data to handle, partly because I don't think the components' updates were fully in sync or aligned with the overall list for unknown reasons), but it was easy to make a script to retrieve the lot of them.
Firstly, here's how the 5 individual components compare with the overall WT list: https://i.imgur.com/C4Ydox7.png (Notice "XS" as high as #2 on twitter and #9 on reddit!)
The main interest for me in the components was to see what other songs not in the overall WT list could pop up - effectively, as a WT bubbling under. These are the songs that never made WT overall, that are somewhere among the 31 components/combinations thereof as of their final state. The 3rd column is the highest number of votes they appear with - for example, "Intrasport" is #83 on the combination of instagram DMs + reddit with 16 votes, and #53 on reddit alone with 4 votes, so 16 is the maximum it has (of course, its total votes among all 5 components would be higher, but that number is unknown). The ones with a "●" made the Hottest 200.
All My Friends
King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard
Never Come Back
Cars In Space
Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever
Rain [Ft. Tay Keith]
Aitch x AJ Tracey
1x1 [Ft. Nova Twins]
Bring Me The Horizon
Savage Remix [Ft. Beyoncé]
Megan Thee Stallion
Teen Jesus And The Jean Teasers
Finally // beautiful stranger
My Own Soul's Warning
It's All So Incredibly Loud
Time (You And I)
Happiness In Liquid Form
Momentary Bliss [Ft. slowthai & Slaves]
(I do realise that the numbers get so low at the bottom that it means almost nothing )
Additionally, from retrieving the components occasionally (when I thought of it) over the past month, here are others that appeared somewhere among them, at some point in the past - for example, "Cash Machine" appeared once at #99 on instagram posts on 29/12 (with 20 votes):
Take Care In Your Dreaming [Ft. Denzel Curry/Tricky/Sampa The Great]
Explode Into View
Eliza & The Delusionals
out of sight [Ft. 2 Chainz]
Run The Jewels
Let Me Love You Like A Woman
Lana Del Rey
Slow Down Sonic
Ego Death [Ft. Kanye West/FKA Twigs/Skrillex]
Ty Dolla $ign
Bad Taste Blues (Part III)
Ball Park Music
Dine N Dash
First Nation [Ft. Jessica Mauboy/Tasman Keith]
Experiment On Me
Joji & BENEE
walking in the snow
Run The Jewels
girl in red
Don't Call Again [Ft. Kari Faux]
Brooklyn Bridge To Chorus
"Explode Into View", a song I voted despite thinking it had literally zero chance of being anywhere near top 200, popping up once at #95 on instagram DMs (on 18/1) was an amazing surprise. Enough to make this obvious work of art https://i.imgur.com/q3VIGrr.gif . Of course, the 10 votes it had in that component were 40% that of "Cracks", which placed at #187, so it's still not as if it would be within miles of the top 200, but it's nonetheless cute that it has a few fans.
This isn't relevant to anyone but since I couldn't really post it before, I made a H100 prediction the day before the H100 (the numbers in brackets are the songs WT' positions at the time): https://pastebin.com/6jMz5CNi 85 of the songs made the H100! The ones I was wrong about were "death bed" (#30 in my prediction), "Shook" (#50), "Life Is A Game Of Changing" (#71), "Heavy Weather" (#76), "Snail" (#80), "Daylight" (#83), "cotton candy" (#86), "Up In There" (#88), "distance" (#89), "Day By Day" (#90), "Nothing For Free" (#91), "Save Your Tears" (#92), "After Hours" (#93), "Time Of My Life" (#95) and "SEND IT!" (#98) - all of which made the top 150, except "Day By Day" which didn't make the top 200 at all. The ones that made the H100 that I didn't have in my prediction were "Fantasising" (#66), "Second" (#69), "OBEY" (#71), "Scream Drive Faster" (#74), "Photo ID" (#75), "Weightless" (#81), "The Clap" (#82), "Too Tough Terry" (#85), "Three Leaf Clover" (#87), "In Her Eyes" (#89), "These Days" (#92), "Rain" (#94), "Germaphobe" (#96), "Audacity" (#97) and "Kool" (#100). There are quite a few that I thought would fall considerably more than they actually did (and I wonder if the lower number of votes was a factor here) - including "Animals", which was #18 on WT and I predicted #75, and it turned out exactly in the middle of the 2 I got the correct 13 songs in the top 13, including #1, #2, #5, #6, #12 and #13 correct, and also #33, #41 and #70 happened to be exactly right.
Now, speaking of "death bed" - it was the biggest shock of WT altogether for me. Before it started, I expected it to be a #1 contender or at least very high, thinking it had probably the best combination of 'big on the charts' and (so I thought) 'big on triple j' in 2020. When I was reading the first WT update and got to #2 and hadn't seen it yet, I thought it would be #1... but that was some Spacey Jane song. So then I thought it would surely enter soon, but it never showed up until the top 200 got published and it was sitting at a measly #163. Even then, I still predicted it would be a giant climber, and only started questioning it around #50, but was thinking "Blue World" was more likely to be out than it - then "SO DONE" appearing and "Shook" seeming no longer feasible cancelled each other out - then "Blue World" appeared, and only at that point I was sure "death bed" was out. I don't know what happened with it and I wonder if triple j were caught by surprise too, given they seemed keen on Powfu enough to get an interview with him when the song was big and put "Eyes Blue Like The Atlantic, Pt. 2" on rotation as well.
As for myself, I got 0 votes in today, but really that's only because "Scream Drive Faster" massively surpassed my expectations of being something like #160. 3 other votes of mine were technically possible but I always knew they were unlikely: "SUNNY", which was Ocean Grove's self-chosen song (they even specifically said not to vote their other songs; I hope they'd be conflicted by me voting both "SUNNY" and "SENSE AGAIN") so obviously their one chance, but when "Ask For The Anthem" went #57 WT → #192 H100 last year and "SUNNY" finished at #131 on WT, it obviously wasn't happening; "Word Of The Day", which I realised could be mildly popular when it showed up in 2 artist/presenter votes, and it indeed made the WT top 200 for a while, but would've had to have been a rare anomaly to not crash from there; and "Cautious", which never scraped WT or anything but maybe could've been some sort of Gen Z overperformer (not like that worked for Powfu). At least one caller got Max Leone mentioned. The other 4 votes of mine always had zero chance (which is more zero-chance songs than I've let myself vote in the past, but so many of my favourites on the list this year were such, and from Australian bands, that I went for it). I actually ended up getting more songs from my 'top 53' of the voting list in today than I did yesterday, with particular great surprises in "La Luh" and "TELL ME WHY" (which I thought had basically been buried by other Kid LAROI songs). Other highlights were "Race Car Blues", "Tyler Herro", "Fired Up", "After Hours", and my favourite 2020 BMTH song showing up at #106 after I was getting worried about it (it somehow only fell 26 spots from WT! from the same artist who fell #8 to #45 in 2018!). I'm also really glad for Sly Withers getting their first entry even if it's not my song of choice.
PS, not like it was a huge spoiler but congrats to triple j for revealing that Peking Duk and DMA's had made the countdown the day before, as (unless I missed anybody), they were the only artists who could possibly have a 7-year streak
I must be completely out of tune with JJJ recently because this was a largely throwaway H100... most of it was below average. What is the obsession with The Chats? They are a student project at best... awful... I just don't get it. And I know I'm flying solo in this thought, but I'm not on the Lime Cordiale and Tame Impala wavelength... because I think they are both horrifically overrated.
I did manage to get 4 in the voting... 3 of which are in my EOY 100.
I'm just not, and never will be I guess, attuned to the indie rock coming out of this country... and Aus Hip Hop I've never been a fan of, so I guess that's a large chunk of the H100 already on the outer for me year in year out.
I'll stick to my indie pop roots... I did thoroughly enjoy a straight up pop song topping the list for a second year running though
Thanks for those stats 392414. I've been doing a H100 prediction for many years now, since 2008. I usually judge my own prediction performance as having a good day if I predict more than 80 of the 100, and more than 40 of those correct within 10 places, then as many as possible exactly right. I got 81 of the 100 this year, and 39 within 10 places. 7 exactly correct (1,4,7,11,14,51 & 78). So you did a good job with 85.