triple j Hottest 100 voting is open, and it can be the most stressful time of the year for music lovers. Trying to cram a year of music into just 10 songs can be daunting - and while songs like The Kid LAROI's Stay, Cardi B's Up and RÜFÜS DU SOL's Alive immediately come to mind as vote-worthy releases, sometimes, other favourites can slip our minds completely.
We know this feeling all too well, and to help out, we've put together some tracks to help jog your memory when you go to submit your votes this year. You can find the link to the Hottest 100 voting portal here, but before you head on over, check out some of the songs that you'll want to include in your shortlist below!
PinkPantheress – Just For Me
UK bedroom producer PinkPantheress's debut mixtape, To Hell With It, is one of the most fast-paced projects of the year, and Just For Me is arguably the standout track. Produced by Mura Masa, the song references Eminem's Stan lyrically, while calling to mind the heyday of UK garage. It's over in a flash, which is why we found ourself pressing repeat so often.
Tion Wayne – Body (feat. Russ Millions)
Tion Wayne and Russ Millions are superstars in their own right, but together, they've created a drill behemoth. Body sees the pair taking aim at their opps, flexing their various successes, and talking about the women in their life. The track's success was amplified by the success of the remix, including a viral verse from ArrDee - but for pure swagger, it's hard to go past the original.
Halsey - Girl Is A Gun
Halsey's Girl In A Gun is one of the highlights off her fourth album, If I Can't Have Love, I Want Power, and will rattle around your brain long after it's done. It's one of the more upbeat moments off the album and boasts fiery production from Nine Inch Nails' Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, and it sees Halsey taking back the power in her relationships. Rather than end up heartbroken, she's going to have some fun - after all, why not?
Griff – One Night
At what point does a rising star simply become a star? For UK pop musician Griff, that moment feels like it occurred with the release of One Night. It's a track about heartbreak, but rather than wallowing in her sadness, it's an upbeat expression of frustration. Her lyricism on One Night is a standout, with Griff welcoming listeners into her world. If you're looking to exorcise some past pain, then you'll find One Night extremely relatable.
daine - SALT (feat. Oli Sykes)
Melbourne emo-pop musician daine's been steadily releasing singles over the last couple of years, and SALT feels like her most powerful statement of intent to date. When Lonelyspeck's trailblazing production peaks during the all-encompassing chorus, daine and hardcore legend Oli Sykes' vocals rise to the occasion, sounding like they're ripping their souls out in the process. It's the kind of musical moment that you won't soon forget.
Kinder - Bus Stop
Ghanaian-Australian sister duo Kinder's Bus Stop is one of the most stomping tracks of the year. If you're someone that is drawn towards tracks that sound like they could fill a dancefloor in an instant, then press play and lose yourself in this one - it's one hell of a fun time. Just make sure you've got your dancing shoes on when you're listening to Bus Stop, or your feet might hate you in the morning.
BROCKHAMPTON - BANKROLL (feat. A$AP Ferg and A$AP Rocky)
BROCKHAMPTON's BANKROLL is a track that fans have waited on for years, and its official release didn't disappoint. A$AP Rocky and A$AP Ferg fit in seamlessly alongside the band's many members, and while the track's evolved since it was first teased on YouTube in 2018, the energy present in that first teaser is still there - it's an absolutely scorching hip-hop track.
Budjerah - Talk (feat. MAY-A)/Budjerah - Higher
Picking just one Budjerah song was proving to be an impossible task, so we've cheated and gone with two. Talk and Higher show off two different sides of his music - Talk sees him team up with MAY-A for a poppy look at how people don't want to call each other anymore, while Higher is a soaring reminder of how freeing it can be to do your own thing. You can't really go wrong with either one, can you?
Tkay Maidza - KIM
It's always felt like Tkay Maidza is a couple steps ahead of much of the rest of the Australian music scene, and her slamming collab with Yung Baby Tate, KIM, is no different. The song is an ode to the famous Kims of the world (most notably, Kim Kardashian) and it's the kind of track that can make you feel like a star, no matter how your day's going.
Alex The Astronaut - Growing Up
Alex The Astronaut's Growing Up is a reminder of why she's often considered to be one of Australia's most honest songwriters. It channels a lot of the confusion and uncertainty that everyone's experienced over the last two years, but it doesn't get weighed down by melancholy. Instead, it's a song that captures the small moments and thoughts that make us human, and warms your heart in the process.
Moss - SABRE TEETH (feat. Genesis Owusu)
Wadawurrung producer Moss took out triple j's DIY Supergroup competition thanks to his heater SABRE TEETH, including a sample of Genesis Owusu, and the track received an official release soon after. SABRE TEETH contains one of the biggest, bass-laden drops of the year, and while it might leave your ears ringing, it'll also blow your socks off.
100 gecs - mememe
100 gecs sound ready to take over the world on mememe. Part of that is thanks to the influence they've had on left-field pop, and indeed, pop in general, in the couple of years since the release of their 2019 album 1000 gecs, but this track sounds stadium-sized. The blistering drums are chaotic, as is the ska-indebted guitar work - but don't be mistaken. 100 gecs might sound slightly more streamlined on mememe, but they're still crazier than just about anyone else doing it.
Hearteyes - DEATHWISH
Sydney producer Hearteyes has been prolific in 2021, releasing both HEADBANGERS 2 and #CRAZYSUMMER, with DEATHWISH appearing on the former. It's a raucous track that sees Hearteyes spraying hedonistic bars with reckless abandon - and by the end of it, you'll feel ready to take on the world.
Thomas Headon - Nobody Has To Know
It's hard not to fall for Thomas Headon's charm, and he's turned it up to 11 on the cheeky Nobody Has To Know. The Australian/UK singer tells a relatable story of a secret love, and if you're not going to take our word for it, take his - he's referred to it as a "banging tune". Hard to argue with that.
Nerve - ONE IN A MILLION (feat. JK-47)
Nerve and JK-47 are two of Australia's best rappers, and they're also huge fans of each other (and rightfully so). On ONE IN A MILLION, the pair trade bars about their various successes, and the communities they've built along the way - both Nerve and JK-47 know how important it is to bring along the day ones for the ride.
Client Liaison - House Of Holy
Australian disco icons Client Liaison's House Of Holy will help you ascend to another plane of existence. Let their soaring vocals wash over you, healing you of any past sins - by the time the track's done, you'll feel like a whole new person. Client Liaison aren't interested in bringing disco back, because to them, it never left.
girl in red - Serotonin
Norwegian artist girl in red talks candidly about mental health on the chaotic Serotonin, pointing the microscope squarely at herself. It's a song that many will relate to, and the production builds and swells throughout the track, while girl in red sings and raps with equal deftness. It's a highlight in girl in red's discography to date, and it's a showcase of her many musical talents.
Great Gable - Hazy
WA rockers Great Gable let loose with the carefree Hazy, a song that's perfect for your next summer road trip. If you're a fan of surf rock, then this is one that you'll easily fall in love with - it's a track that is a reminder of why Australian music is seriously great. If you need a bit of extra positivity to get you through the day, then look no further!
flowerkid - It's Happening Again (feat. KUCKA)
flowerkid's debut EP everyone has a breaking point opens with a bang, with the KUČKA-featuring It's Happening Again combining his emotive vocals with urgent, garage-influenced production. flowerkid's lyrics are just as gut-wrenching as ever on It's Happening Again, and you'll feel the weight of his songwriting with each note.
OneFour - Street Guide Part 1
OneFour's Street Guide Part 1 sees J. Emz and Spenny sounding as focused and hungry as ever. Following the release of their huge 2020 EP, Against All Odds, Street Guide Part 1 is the start of OneFour's next chapter - and they're going all in. Thinly veiled disses are the order of the day in both rappers' verses, and they're not just looking to settle scores lyrically.
Normani - Wild Side (feat. Cardi B)
Normani called upon Cardi B for the steamy Wild Side, and while fans waited two years for her follow-up to 2019's Motivation, somehow, it still exceeded expectations. Sampling Aaliyah's R&B staple One In A Million, Wild Side is a reminder that despite her brief discography to date, Normani's vocals (and choreography) go toe-to-toe with any other superstar in the world.
The Knocks - R U High (feat. Mallrat)
American electronic duo The Knocks met Australian popstar Mallrat at her show in New York History, a meeting that would eventually result in the banging R U HIGH. As the visualiser shows, this is a track that's suited to a late-night drive. Roll the windows down, and let this one shake your rear view mirror.
ASHWARYA - TO THE NIGHT (feat. Vic Mensa)
Melbourne pop artist ASHWARYA teamed up with Chicago MC Vic Mensa for the triumphant TO THE NIGHT, a track that's designed to push people to own their destiny. Featuring production by Jarrod Rogers and Lucianblomkamp, TO THE NIGHT is a reminder to be the main character in your own story, which, in ASHWARYA's case, is a story of an artist that's quickly rising to the top of Australian pop.