The songs predicted to take out triple j’s iconic Hottest 100 countdown for 2021

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The songs predicted to take out triple j’s iconic Hottest 100 countdown for 2021

Words by Alex Callan & Ashlee Simpson

The Hottest 100 is triple j's annual poll of your favourite songs is back with voting now open.

Start preparing yourselves for the inevitable echoes of “shoulda been higher”, the iconic Hottest 100 Countdown is back.

Run by triple j, the listener voted poll has become an integral party of young Aussie’s calendars with a ‘Hottest 100’ party marking one of the most important day drinking sessions of the year. I mean, who doesn’t love tipping some beers at a party whilst the year’s hottest tracks play; and some bloke named Henry (who didn’t vote in the countdown) argues over the speaker about ‘where that song should have placed’. It’s the perfect combination.

Voting for the iconic triple j’s Hottest 100 is now open and will remain open until Monday 17 January at 12pm AEDT. So, make sure you have your say and show some love for your fave songs of the year!

While it’s always risky weighing in on the world’s biggest music democracy, we figured it may be the perfect time to share our predictions of what might top off this years countdown.

Triple j has revealed all the dates around the 2021 Hottest 100

Lizzo – ‘Rumours’ ft Cardi B

Any song that has amassed 21 million streams on Youtube and another 25 million on Spotify within a week of its release is pretty hard to disregard. 2019’s ‘Cuz I Love You’ saw Lizzo reach international stardom, attaining the American R&B singer a whopping 8 Grammy nominations. Hailed as pop’s newest queen due to her outspoken nature, political and social commentary and body inclusive lyrics, Lizzo has quickly established her as a force to be reckoned with. That’s why the 2021 single Rumours, which saw her team up with Cardi B, a powerhouse in her own right, feels like a serious contender to take out the Hottest 100. Critically, it hasn’t been regarded in good stead, with publications like Variety panning the song for simply being a “re-up” of Lizzo’s previous songs, but, considering she has maintained the Number One artist search for the last week, it seems like the fans have spoken.

Hayden James – ‘Rather Be With You’ ft Crooked Colours

At this point, it seems that if an artist on Future Classic drops a song or album, they will chart in the Hottest 100. Why you may ask?

Well, for no other reason than that as a label, they have proven time after time again that they know what’s good. Whilst artists like Flume, Flight Facilities and Ta-ku all dominated the labels roster over the previous decade, it’s the newer signings that have really been taking the dance community by storm. Take for instance, Hayden James.

Admittedly, he isn’t quite a new signing, having first released music in 2013, but, as the years have progressed, so have his fanbase. James now finds himself reaching some of the highest playcounts in the Aus dance charts and his newest single Rather Be With You feels poised for the same trajectory, with it already becoming Triple J’s 9th highest played song for the year.

The Wiggles – ‘Elephant’ (Like A Version)

Look, if it doesn’t win, it’s coming in the Top 10. Why wouldn’t it? It’s The Wiggles covering Tame Impala, if that doesn’t resonate with 3 different generations of Australian music lovers, I don’t know what will. Already becoming the most streamed Like A Version of 2021 and the subject of a Twitter account titled ‘The Wiggles For Hottest 100’, which posts a daily reminder to vote for The Wiggles in the Hottest 100, it feels like the internet is well and truly behind the Australian child entertainers taking home the prestigious title. Truthfully, I’m surprised that they didn’t win already the year that they dropped ‘Wags The Dog, He Likes To Tango’, but then again, it did take Leo 7 nominations to take home an Oscar.

Azure Ryder – ‘Some Kind Of Love’

Delivering vocal similarities to Florence Welch and London Grammar’s Hannah Reid, Azure Ryder has quickly become the newest face on the melodramatic pop scene. With international stations such as the BBC pushing the Sydney based artists music and songs like Wolves sitting on near 10 million streams, Azure Ryder seems like a surefire Hottest 100 entry. With her rapid rise in the pop-scene and unique soaring vocals, it’s no surprise that Ryder’s 2021 single ‘Some Kind Of Love’ is currently sitting at the top of Triple J’s ‘most played’ list.

Teen Jesus and the Jean Teasers- AHHHH!

One thing that always persists in my memory is the Blunt Magazine ‘Reader Choice Awards’ from 2009. It seemed so certain that Parkway Drive would take home the title of ‘Band Of The Year’, so when Brisbane up and comers The Amity Affliction tied for first place, everyone was surprised, even the writers who confirmed their surprise in the accompanying article. I feel this is what’s happening with Teen Jesus and the Jean Teasers.

In an era where Australian 90’s inspired indie rock has reinvigorated its prominence and become one of the most popular genres for gig crowds, groups like Spacey Jane, Dear Seattle and Slowly Slowly are absolutely reigning supreme. But whilst the industry is closely following these groups, the underground following of other groups are slowly surfacing.

That’s where Teen Jesus and the Jean Teasers come in; the all-girl punk rock outfit has become the hottest new addition to James Tidswell’s label Domestic La La. Having been the most hyped talking point of many punters over the last few months and recently scoring a spot on the Unify lineup, it’s only a matter of time before Teen Jesus find themselves with similar stardom as their contemporaries. Whilst I don’t see the 20-year-olds winning the 100, it wouldn’t surprise me if their ever-growing fanbase all chucked them a vote and the group ended doing an Amity and charting high; to the surprise of many who may not have previously heard of them.

Lorde – ‘Stoned At The Nail Salon’

Although Lorde’s newest effort Solar Power has faced backlash online due to its departure from industrial-inspired synths; Lorde is still Lorde, which means she is destined for votes in the Hottest 100. Whilst many aren’t digging the Sandi Thom style folk-pop that Lorde has redirected to, many international listeners are, with Solar Power reaching number one on the charts. Although, in Australia Solar Power is actually yet to chart, with the ARIA sales list indicated that Billie Eilish is still on top. However, the growing rate of Stoned at The Nail Salon’s Spotify play count indicates that Lorde’s army of fans will continue to adorn her sound regardless of general consensus. Could their devotion be enough to get Lorde high in the 100 again? I guess we will have to wait and see.

Billie Eilish- NDA

We had to include Billie. Her fame was not short-lived after taking out the number 1 spot in 2019’s countdown, instead, she has grown to prolific levels of stardom world wide. Her 2021 album Happier Than Ever has been comfortably sitting on top of the Aria charts, with new singles popping up weekly to dominate the airwaves. NDA quickly became a fan favourite, with many loving the hard hitting synth and off-kilter percussion accompanying the track. It may not have been the album’s lead single, but it’s certain to score high in this year’s Hottest 100.

Olivia Rodrigo – ‘Good 4 U’

It would almost feel untrue for me to tell you that Good 4 U only came out in May of 2021. Olivia Rodrigo is inescapable; appearing on every radio station around Australia, popping up in commercials and on tv shows, it almost feels as if her song Good 4 U has existed for years. On top of that, her album Sour has found itself sitting on top of the charts worldwide with it’s most recent single Brutal already marking 8.9 million streams two days after its release (it was on 3 million within 8 hours). With Sour set to rechart at number one after it’s vinyl release and Good 4 U making mainstream news after it was recently discovered that Hayley Williams of Paramore has a songwriting credit for the song, it almost feels like a certainty that Rodrigo will pop up in the 100 a handful of times, quite possibly even winning the number one entry.

The Jungle Giants – ‘Heavy Hearted’

I don’t think there would be a person out there who would be annoyed if The Jungle Giants won the 2021 Hottest 100. They deserve it.

Since 2011 the indie rock group have been festival favourites and almost poster children of Triple J as a whole. But, it’s not just that they get put on every Triple J endorsed lineup, it’s that they well and truly win the crowd over. Every year that festivals like Splendor or Falls go ahead, people come back and tell me that the highlight was The Jungle Giants. Meaning, the gradual rise in the group’s popularity feels incredibly well deserved, and with the groups newest album Love Signs being their most popular to date, it could be the year they finally take it home.

‘Heavy Hearted’ is lifted from The Jungle Giants new album, Love Signs, released in July this year.

The Kid Laroi – ‘Without You’ & ‘Stay’

In a sense, it felt weird compiling this list, mainly because it appears so evident that The Kid Laroi will win. F*CK Love 3+:Over You is one of the year’s biggest albums, gaining the 18 year old Kamilaroi rapper worldwide success and opportunities to collaborate with artists like Justin Beiber. Amongst all that, he also became the most-streamed rapper on Spotify after his monthly listeners overtook none other than Kendrick Lamar. Many may put ‘Without You’’s popularity down to its inclusion in many viral Tiktok videos, but when looking at charts, streams and reviews it’s evident that The Kid Laroi is much more than an internet fad. But that will be solidified to the naysayers when he wins this year’s Hottest 100.

Tai Verdes & 24kGoldn- ‘A-O-K’

Dubbed the ultimate song to be in your summer playlist whilst sticking your head out the window for a beach drive; ‘A-O-K’ sends readers into the ideal summery landscape, as millions of listeners already have indulged in the blissful vibe of the song. As so many have already enjoyed the tune, ‘A-O-K’ is set to make an appearance during the hottest 100.


The Rubens – ‘Masterpiece’

After ‘Hoops’ took out the top spot back in 2015 and after only placing 105th since 2019, The Rubens’ recently released 0202 album contains a selection of songs with incredible potential to take out the top spot, however ‘Masterpiece’ has already racked up over 7.5 million listens on Spotify and has endlessly been heard on the radio each day soon after it’s release. There is no doubt that their Geelong and Torquay tour in the new year will help promote ‘Masterpiece’ right up to the top spot. 


Elton John, Dua Lipa & PNAU – ‘Cold Heart’

We’ve all heard it by now and boogie along to it each time we hear it, but ‘Cold Heart’ is determined to place within the top 100 this year. Its soaring popularity comes after its release as a single off Elton John’s collaborative album The Lockdown Sessions, which sees the likes of Miley Cyrus, Nicki Minaj, Charlie Puth, and others continue to boost John’s timeless popularity. ‘Cold Heart’ is a combination of lyrics from four previous songs by Elton John, which allows its electric, modern rhythm to indulge both young and old listeners. 


Doja Cat – ‘Kiss Me More’

The queen herself, Doja Cat, released Planet Her earlier this year, and jams like ‘Kiss Me More’ has racked up over 8.7 million listens on Spotify and 250 million on Youtube. ‘Kiss Me More’ has also jumped into the TikTok music charts with just under 3 million videos with the song in the background. Doja Cat has absolutely ploughed her way into the charts through 2021 and will no doubt enter the hottest 100. 


Billie Eilish – ‘Therefore I Am’

Alike ‘NDA’ Billie Eilish’s ‘Therefore I Am’ has a top placed reserved in this year’s hottest 100. With millions of listens across Youtube, Spotify, and TikTok, ‘Therefore I Am’ has a hypnotising beat and lyrics that assault the listener to the point where voting for ‘Therefore I Am’ is a must. 


Bruno Mars, Anderson.Paak & Silk Sonic – ‘Leave The Door Open’

Bruno Mars reentered the music scene this year for the first time since 2016, this time collaborating with Anderson.Paak and Silk Sonic to release a variety of groovy beats, however ‘Leave The Door Open’ is set to be in the hottest 100 due to its incredible singability and danceability. We last saw Bruno Mars in the countdown in 2014 with ‘Uptown Funk’ coming in at sixth, so seeing his name appear in the charts again would be a delight. 

Some other tracks we reckon will place rather high:

  • Swedish House Mafia – ‘It Gets Better’
  • Griff – ‘One Foot In Front Of The Other’
  • Baker Boy – ‘Ride’ (Ft. Yirrmal)’
  • Wolf Alice – ‘Smile’
  • WAAX – ‘Most Hated Girl’
  • Babe Rainbow – ‘Ready For Tomorrow’
  • Telenova – ‘Bones’
  • Spacey Jane – ‘Lots of Nothing’
  • Lil Nas X & Jack Harlow – ‘Industry Baby’
  • Genesis Owusu – ‘Gold Chains’

Who are you voting for?? Let us know over on our Instagram!