Despite being the hot favourite to take out the countdown, Gotye’s 2012 hit featuring Kimbra Somebody That I Used To Know came runner-up. The song is one of the most successful Australian songs of all time and charted in first place around the world, including on the Billboard charts in the US.
With the current coronavirus pandemic about to make an enormous impact on Australian entertainment – with the government banning gatherings of more than 500 people – the industry has received a much needed boost with a large number of artists from this country represented in the countdown.
Eight of the top 10 songs came from Australian artists with Matt Corby, Rufus du Sol, Gang of Youths, Angus and Julia Stone, Violent Soho and Flume all finding their music at the pointy end of the count down.
Flume also had the most number of songs in the countdown with five tracks making the cut.
Nearly half of the songs in the Hottest 100 of the Decade came from Australian artists with 49 of the tracks in the countdown provided by locals. Several Australian performers appeared multiple times including Gang of Youths, Hilltop Hoods, Angus and Julia Stone and 17-year-old Sydney singer Ruel who released his first single at 15. His tracks Dazed and Confused and Painkiller came in at 99 and 83 respectively.
Triple J’s live covers series Like A Version have grown in popularity in the countdown in recent years, but only offered one track to the hottest songs of the decade with DMA’s cover of Cher’s Believe coming in at 41. It had previously reached No.6 in 2016’s Hottest 100.
Triple J Unearthed, which has traditionally been the path to success for a number of independent artists, can celebrate having introduced Australia to a number of the hottest songs from the last decade. Six artists first discovered on unearthed featured on the countdown including Ruby Fields, Amy Shark and Vance Joy.
The past decade has seen the rise in popularity of hip hop music and that was reflected in the charts. Aside from Flume’s dominance the two artists with the most number of songs in the countdown were Kayne West with five entries and Kendrick Lamar with four.
Songs from 2010 fared better than more recent songs with 2011 and 2012 being responsible for the highest number of songs in the countdown. Songs released in 2019 only took three spots including the hottest song of 2019 – Bad Guy only coming in at 71. Dance Monkey, the most ubiquitous song of the past 12 months and the most successful Australian single ever released, failed to make it into the Hottest 100 of the decade.
Nine songs made their Hottest 100 debut in the hottest songs of the decade including Adele’s Rolling in the Deep, Robyn’s Dancing On My Own, J. Cole’s M.A.A.D City and Rufus du Sol’s original version of Innerbloom, however a remix of that song was featured in the countdown in 2017.
The best international performer in the countdown was Arctic Monkey’s Do I Wanna Know which came third.
Triple J reports more than 1.8 million votes were received for the Hottest 100 of the Decade.
The top 10 songs of the decade
10. Brother – Matt Corby
9. Big Jet Plane – Angus and Julia Stone
8. Never Be Like You – Flume (Feat. Kai)
7. Pumped up Kicks – Foster The People
6. Magnolia – Gang of Youths
5. Inner Bloom – Rufus du Sol
4. Covered in Chrome – Violent Soho
3. Do I Wanna Know – Arctic Monkeys
2. Somebody That I Used To Know – Gotye (Feat. Kimbra)
1. The Less I Know The Better – Tame Impala
Nathanael Cooper is the deputy culture editor at The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age.