For true music heads, below is the visual explanation for each of our chosen tracks. Comments and heckling is strongly encouraged.
You can also just listen to our Best of 2017 Spotify playlist now and go about your business. You’re busy. We get it.
There has been so much brilliant music out in 2017, from emerging talent to heritage acts who continue to inspire.
We’ve loved music across genres as far reaching as hardcore rap, rock, indie pop disco, melancholy, and playful surfer ballads of sunshine & babes. Of course there is a healthy amount of Australian talent also included on the list like Baker Boy, Winston Surfshirt, Teischa, Kite String Tangle, Lisa Mitchell, Samsaruh and Alex Lahey. We believe it will be a huge year for locals in Triple J’s Hottest 100, which will be broadcast around the world on Saturday 27 January, 2018.
Alex Lahey | Every Day’s The Weekend
Tania: #millenialproblems set to delirious guitar riffs and an infectious beat, Melbourne’s Lahey worked with Oscar from Holy Holy to produce this boppy, anxsty gem. Take a day off from life and head to the beach, windows down. On a side note, one of my favourite videos this year, if not ever.
#millenialproblems set to delirious guitar riffs and an infectious beat. – Tania
alt-J | 3WW
Mel: This has about as many parts as Wings’ ‘Band on the Run’, though it’s way more chilled… until the Ben Folds type crescendo. The lyric ‘I just want to love you in my own language’ perfectly captures the test of enduring love.
alt-J | In Cold Blood
Rich: Who’d ever think singing in binary would be so catchy? Another menacingly potent hymn from the group who sometimes record songs about masonry.
Another menacingly potent hymn from the group who sometimes record songs about masonry. – Rich
Arcade Fire | Everything Now
Mel: This is like a disco ballad for the stresses of modern life. I always imagine our best friend serenading his wife in the kitchen to this. Always so much dancing to be done.
Rich: Should be renamed to Everywhere Now in recognition of its now universal inclusion into every radio catalogue, BBQ playlist, DJ set, TV commercial, instructional video, opening of parliament… Still, a cracking song.
We believe it will be a huge year for locals in Triple J’s Hottest 100, which will be broadcast around the world on Saturday 27 January, 2018.
Baker Boy, Kian | Cloud 9
Tania: Arnhem Land’s ‘fresh new prince’ bursts forth, all attitude and pride, rapping in his Yolngu Matha language and with a style that brings to mind a young MC Solaar. Add to this the smoothest vocals ever heard from a 14-year-old (Kian Brownfield) and right here is one of the most exciting tracks of 2017.
One of the most exciting tracks of 2017.
Beck | Colors
Rich: Unsurprisingly kaleidoscopic number from the man who plays 16 instruments, which is famously 16 more than Kanye.
Mel: Also one of the best videos for the year. So much slime.
Beck | Up All Night
Mel: There is much fun to be had whenever this plays. Beck is one of those incredible artists who I’ve felt like I’ve grown up with (except we’re still so immature). He masters reinvention like Madonna owned her makeover sprints in the late 1980s.
Beck masters reinvention like Madonna owned her makeover sprints in the late 1980s.
Billie Eilish | watch
Tania: Barely 16 years-old, LA songwriter Billie Eilish makes me feel 16 again too, singing out the lovelorn drama of her tortured lyrics: “I’ll sit and watch your car burn\with the fire that you started in me\but you never came back to ask it out.” The pain. Cute moody squad-moves in the vid, too, but nothing on Amy Shark.
Mel:Amy Shark! Hottest 100 Top 3 prediction for Weekends. We love her.
Cage the Elephant | Whole Wide World (Unpeeled)
Mel: A summer anthem that gracefully saunters through all the seasons.
Rich: I love this song because it reminds me of meeting my beautiful wife.
Cigarettes After Sex | Apocalypse
Mel: Raf Simons and Calvin Klein first brought this band to my attention. I will bathe in them all summer long.
Dream Wife | Somebody
Tania: Three cool as f*ck icy blondes who look like Bananarama, and sound like the Strokes. This alt-rock British/Icelandic trio give it punk-lite grrrrrl power in the one about reclaiming femininity: “I am not my body, I am somebody”. Oh boom. SING IT.
Three cool as f*ck icy blondes who look like Bananarama, and sound like the Strokes. – Tania
Future Islands – Ran
Mel: The perfect Sunday afternoon tune. A perfect closer for an indie rom com. I’m sad I missed these guys in Australia this time.
Kasabian | You’re in Love with a Psycho
Mel: ‘…and there’s nothing you can do about it’ I don’t know whether it’s a case of sorry Rich or poor Mel. Our love is perfectly flawed.
Kendrick Lamar – HUMBLE.
Mel: This is my first Hottest 100 prediction for #1. ‘Be humble. B*tch, sit down.’ Words for life. Show respect, stop dithering. Be real and don’t drain the life out of people. Pull your weight and take control of your destiny. Contribute. Be happy for others. Get out of your seat. Use your manners.
Rich: I’ve surprised myself by having only one hip hop entry in this top ten, especially as it’s a non-Australian number. Not Kendrick’s best single (what could ever top King Kunta?), but with ominously intelligent lyrics and a threatening beat it’s enough to warrant multiple listenings while sitting in the dark.
Prediction: WINNER Triple J HOTTEST 100
King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard | Rattlesnake
Mel: I always find it hard to pick just one Gizz track. But this, my dears, is an Ogier-Hawker-Barwick family anthem. Rattle, rattle, rattle… One of the best live shows of the year too.
The Kite String Tangle | The Prize
Tania: Brisbane’s Danny Harley gives more good alternative synth to sashay around to this summer. In duet with Bridgette (Rudimental) Amofah’s soaring vocals, this track starts as upbeat house then breaks down into a pleasingly quirky, interpretative-dance break.
Leikeli47 | 2nd fiddle
Tania: I continue to be intrigued by the mysteriously masked, Brooklyn noise-rap vigilante that is Leikeli47. Sometimes in life you’ve got to retreat, reset, reinvent. And when you come back, absolutely blast this shit.
Sometimes in life you’ve got to retreat, reset, reinvent.
Liam Gallagher | Chinatown
Rich: I enjoy both Gallaghers, but usually the more potatoesque of the two. That said, Liam’s new tunes are excellent and particularly this bit of appropriately refreshing summer pop.
I enjoy both Gallaghers, but usually the more potatoesque of the two.
Lisa Mitchell | Every You Every Me
Rich: A gloriously lingering cover of Placebo’s gloriously lingering original, made better with less whiny vocals this time around.
Luis Fonsi, Daddy Yankee, Bieber | Despacito ft. Justin Bieber
Rich: How did this happen? Not since the Macarena has the world elevated a Latino pop song to #1. The song’s melody will worm into your ear right from the opening Flamenco refrain. Justin singing in Spanish is enough to turn non-Beliebers. The video alone has had 598 million views.
Mick Jagger | Gotta Get A Grip (Kevin Parker Remix)
Tania: This was released the day after Mick’s 74th birthday and remixed by Tame Impala’s Kevin Parker. Try and get a grip once the drawling guitars kick in. This would have been my top workout track for 2017, had I worked out.
This would have been my top workout track for 2017, had I worked out.
Radiohead | I Promise
Rich: A typically high quality and haunting chant from the masters of minor key tonality. Radiohead did well to shelve this since its original contention as an OK Computer addition. The world wasn’t ready then.
Mel: As Rich mentioned, this was recorded during the 1997 sessions for OK Computer, but wasn’t released until 2017. I listen in disbelief that our friend Jim never heard this before he left us. In fact, it was released the day we attended his funeral. For me, his memory lives on in this song.
Samsaruh | Golden to Thrive
Tania: Get lost in the smoky vocals of yet another songwriter with soul beyond her tender years. Melbourne’s Samsaruh is BANKS with extra grit. Light candles and sway in the shadows to this one.
Spoon | Hot Thoughts
Rich: This is the best song to play while driving down a steep hill, a little faster than what one would find comfortable.
Mel: Read our 2017 interview with Jim Eno, founding member of Spoon.
Teischa | Midnight Hour
Tania: I like a good broody siren-song, and in Perth’s Teischa I hear folk set to a 90s backbeat, I hear Amy Winehouse, I hear Fleetwood Mac mysticism. Perfection to zone out to, late at night.
Winston Surfshirt | Be About You
Tania: A bit of bedroom brass, lots of shameless sensual crooning. Oh stop it. This is a number that (and I quote) “invites the kind of easy dancing that comes with day drinking.” On a Manly beach semi-dressed, no less.
[Be About You] “invites the kind of easy dancing that comes with day drinking.”