It's up there with snags on the BBQ, the blow-up pool and backyard cricket. Triple J's Hottest 100 countdown is essential to celebrating Australia Day properly and is enjoyed by punters far and wide.
Love it or hate it, last year’s winner, Hoops by The Rubens, was backed home by the hipsters, who are again expected to play a decisive role in determining the 2017 winner. With that in mind, our resident Oddschecker hipster, Tim Alexander, has assigned a ‘banger rating’ to each song – his opinion is to be respected.
With voting not getting underway until next Saturday, 10 December and closing on Friday, 22 January, now could be a fantastic opportunity to snap up some value in the early markets! We preview the chances of 10 songs likely to be at the pointy end of the countdown come January 26!
1. NEVER BE LIKE YOU – FLUME FEAT. KAI
Flume’s Never Be Like You may have only briefly hit number 1 in January, but it stuck around on the charts for a massive 40 weeks! Will it be third time lucky for Australian music's golden child, Harley Streten? Streten took out fourth spot in 2012’s Hottest 100 with his hit Holdin’ On and followed up with fifth in 2013 for Drop the Game.
Why it will win: Flume is fresh off a dominant showing at last month’s ARIA Awards where he took out a whopping 5 categories. After such a haul, it’s hardly surprising he is an odds-on-favourite to win this countdown. He’s already been well backed – shortening from $2.00 to his current best quote of $1.73 (William Hill).
Why it won't: Never Be Like You dropped way back on January 16. That gives Flume the disadvantage of being somewhat out of the public's memory when it comes to voting in December.
Banger rating: 9/10
2. STARBOY - THE WEEKND FEAT. DAFT PUNK
Starboy hit second spot on the ARIA charts, but has slid to fourth over the last few weeks. The Weeknd is back for a second bite of the cherry, finishing 9th last year with Can't Feel My Face, a song reportedly about being off one's face on cocaine. Having spent 9 weeks and counting on the billboards, Starboy is likely to still be charting when voting opens, which definitely helps it out.
Why it will win: Starboy is fresh in everyone's minds and has been crunched from 14.00 to 9.00 best odds with Sportsbet over the past few days. The trend is your friend so back this banger home!
Why it won't: Has The Weeknd risked angering the odds gods by removing his famous dreadlocks? If Starboy falls short then he'll only have the new haircut to blame.
Banger rating: 9.5/10
3. PAPERCUTS - ILLY FEAT. VERA BLUE
Papercuts has spent a total 20 weeks and counting on the Australian music billboards, peaking at second place. Illy has featured in the Hottest 100 previously, with singles Cigarettes coming 35th in 2011 and Swear Jar reaching 39th last year, but the rapper needs to step up if he wants this year's top spot. Then again, Vera Blue's vocals might get him over the line.
Why it will win: Illy is true blue Australian and has put together a dope beat. Papercuts is a commercial radio success and is hard to look past.
Why it won't: Timing is everything and this song appears to have had its run, given it currently sits 30th on the charts. It could be a case of ‘out of sight, out of mind’ for this one.
Banger rating: 8/10
4. 1955 - HILLTOP HOODS FEAT. MONTAIGNE & TOM THUM
The Hilltop Hoods have impeccable Hottest 100 pedigree, placing in the top ten across five separate years since their debut in 2003. The Adelaide trio have claimed third twice, most recently in 2014 with Cosby Sweater, and are looking to go two spots better with 1955, which peaked at number 2 on the ARIA charts in March.
Why it will win: A great hook from rising star, Montaigne, makes 1955 the kind of earworm that gets stuck in your head for days.
Why it won't: Only one hip-hop song has ever finished top of the countdown, namely Macklemore and Ryan Lewis’s Thrift Shop in 2013, and it'll be a tough ask for the Hoods to match that classic tune.
Banger rating: 6.5/10
5. ADORE - AMY SHARK
After peaking at number 10, Adore currently sits at unlucky 13 in the Australian artist charts and has been there for a total 4 weeks. Amy Shark only recently made it big, having been discovered as Triple J's Unearthed Feature Artist in August. While the young song writer, filmmaker and producer has never featured in the Hottest 100, she's clearly got talent.
Why it will win: This indie tune will heavily court the hipster vote who always have a say when it comes to the countdown. Punters should write them off at their own peril.
Why it won't: Let's face facts. Adore simply isn't a typical banger and won't appeal one bit to those who crave some decent beats-per-minute. Surprisingly, it has made it to $13.00 best odds with William Hill.
Banger rating: 1/10
6. ONE DANCE - DRAKE FEAT. KYLA AND WIZKID
Drake's One Dance was always destined to reach number 1 on the billboards, staying top for 7 weeks, and spent 34 weeks overall on the charts. Those are strong stats, but even more impressive is the ludicrous price difference between Sportsbet and William Hill for it to win. Punters can get ridiculous overs with William Hill who are currently offering 151.00 best odds, making One Dance a fantastic value bet!
Why it will win: Drizzy has previously featured in the Hottest 100, meaning he's definitely eligible for the countdown, unlike Taylor Swift for instance, and clearly has the Hennessy drinkers demographic all locked up.
Why it won't: One Dance's odds might just prove too good to be true and you've just got to be a little suspicious. Absolutely worth a flutter though!
Banger rating: 9/10
7. THE OPPOSITE OF US - BIG SCARY
Big Scary snuck into the Hottest 100 in 2013, taking out 96th spot, but are on track to smash their personal best this year with The Opposite Of Us. The song peaked at 100 in September on the Australian charts and is perfect easy-listening. At 16.00 best odds with Sportsbet don't discount it.
Why it will win: 2016 is the year of the underdog after all and Big Scary isn't actually very big or scary. The duo formed after a few laidback living-room jam sessions.
Why it won't: A lack of mainstream radio success will likely hold the song back. Simply getting into the top ten is an achievement in its own right.
Banger rating: 7/10
8. STRANGER - PEKING DUK FEAT. ELLIPHANT
After a few lacklustre releases, Peking Duk are back with a bang. Stranger peaked at 12th spot and currently sits 13th on the ARIA charts, having been on the billboards for 5 weeks and counting. The duo have come close before, taking out 2nd and 5th positions in 2014's Hottest 100 and punters should seriously consider Stranger a dark horse for this year's top spot.
Why it will win: Another song which looks like it'll go into voting with momentum, punters should wait and see if it cracks the Australian charts' top ten before piling on.
Why it won't: Stranger will be judged against Peking Duk's past hits and the question is whether it lives up to those lofty standards. Some may argue it doesn't quite cut it.
Banger rating: 7.5/10
9. SURFIN' - KID CUDI FEAT. PHARRELL WILLIAMS
After delaying his album, Passion, Pain & Demon Slayin', Kid Cudi decided to reward fans for their patience by dropping his lead single featuring none other than Pharrell. Surfin' reached a humble 77th spot on the ARIA charts, but was a low-key online release so this groovy beat shouldn't be dismissed that easily.
Why it will win: Forget about its first performance on the charts, Surfin' will clearly peak higher once Cudders releases his much hyped album on 16 December, coincidentally just after voting starts.
Why it won't: Although Williams had a hand in Daft Punk's bronze podium finish with Get Lucky back in 2013, Cudi has never cracked the Hottest 100's top ten so he's certainly a roughie.
Banger rating: 7/10
10. PANDA - DESIIGNER
Panda was a viral hit in the US and, although it remained on the billboards for 24 weeks, somehow topped out at 7th spot on the Australian charts. Desiigner has never featured on the Hottest 100, but was mentored by Kanye West, so he may just gain some sympathy votes given Yeezy’s recent health issues. With respect to its unequivocal success overseas, 31.00 best odds with William Hill looks valuelicious!
Why it will win: By sheer weight of repetition, Panda is in with a shot and inspirational lyrics include "Kikikikikii rrrrrrrroooooooooo, Panda Panda Panda Panda". Undeniably a banger though!
Why it won't: Can anyone actually understand a word of Desiigner? His thick accent is surely an everyday struggle for the Brooklyn rapper and counts against him here.
Banger rating: 8.5/10