That 12 month mark has hit again, bringing a new year and the obligatory challenge of selecting 10 songs to vote for in the Triple J Hottest 100 countdown. It may have been a while since anything has been posted here, but let me assure you the music has been heard. In fact, I truly outdid myself this time around, getting my votes in before Christmas.
Efficient yes, but it doesn’t make the task any less arduous. It’s torture, but there’s a point where any more deliberation results in little return. It started with 50, which got culled to about 30 and then began the painstaking process of going around in circles with about 15 tracks to get to the 10.
Sure, there’s “the list” of tracks to consider, but that’s just a prompt – no list will constrain my thinking because there are lots of good songs from 2014 irrespective of popularity or being played on the radio. And as usual, only one song per artist (causing much of the initial deliberation).
My number one vote….
I like a lot of music. I’d push that to loving a lot of music for the really good stuff, and then there are those times that you’re just floored. This beauty falls into the latter – the stuff that makes the world stop for that split second while the world seemingly stops. I know it’s not on “the list” but there’s just no passing this one – album came out this year, and the track was on the airwaves late last year so I’ll count it as a 2014 track.
And the rest….
Remove Hozier and this would have been the top vote. I wanted to vote for Saint Joan, and I tried…and continued to flip between the two endlessly. Surely any song managing to incorporate a somnambulist is worthy, but Ruckers Hill was the one that got played on repeat, the one I wanted to hear more live, so that was that.
A non-negotiable inclusion, big rock anthem sounds that is absolutely killer live and has also had a few (or more) repeated listens throughout the year despite all the gems on Blackbird.
Pretty simple concept – one that has been told and sung many a time. But some of those are better than others, including this one. Unmistakable JBT sounds, lyric prowess and overall good vibes. Big tick on this one.
Another one not from that list, but a little discovery from a purchase made on my travels, from a store that still had a headphone stand with a selection of CDs to sample and play (talk about getting a little nostalgic).
Mornings became just a little more bearable when this got a spin on the airwaves – definitely not the first track you’d want to hear – far too much fun and sunshine in those cheery sounds but top marks for being a highly effective earworm.
Again, more deliberation on which Kingswood track to include (some serious contenders from Microscopic Wars) but hearing the lads tune in to their inner QOTSA vibe to create this one just scrapes through ahead of the others.
Temples – Sun Structures
This takes me back to sitting under a shady tree in Grant Park on day one of Lollapalooza back in August (which will eventually end up on the blog….) and a band that hasn’t had as much of my listening attention as it deserves. But I love the gritty psychedelic sounds…a bit of bite and edge intertwined with the dreamy vibes.
This wasn’t about whether Royal Blood got into the top 10, but more which track to choose. Much listening, much deliberation but happily settling on Ten Tonne Skeleton. Turn this one up loud.
Holy Holy – History
Because it’s not all about catchy riffs, distorted guitars and thrashing drums…as good as that stuff is I can’t pass up lush layered arrangements and gorgeous harmonies from these guys, first heard as a support act in 2014.
Culling the handful of tracks that exceeded the ten was gut-wrenchingly difficult so they at least deserve a highly commendable mention…
And in case there’s a need for some extended listening…the longer short list also included…
Australia Day will be safely booked out for listening to the top 100 countdown to hear the results, whatever they may be.