You know, as far as the Wyrmlog is concerned signing up to Twitter may have been a bit of a misstep. Now whenever I have an inane thought it quickly vanishes off into the Twitterverse in 140 characters or less, rather than sitting around in my head and fermenting its way into a blog post. I’ll have to see what I can do about this.
Anyway, it’s Australia Day. There’s a lot more talk this year about moving the date to something less upsetting to the Indigenous population, and consequently a lot more pushback along the lines of “why don’t they just get over it!”. As is standard practice the news bulletins roll out some Indigenous people who want to change the date, and then track down another Indigenous person (it’s usually a single person) to say why the first bunch of Indigenous people are wrong, and then round it all up with some vox pops. And thus the news cycle continues.
I’m quite sympathetic to those who want to change the date. I can’t deny however that this is partially because January 26th doesn’t mean anything more to me than a day off work and the Triple J Hottest 100. Yes, I’m Australian, and I’m grateful to be Australian. I’m proud of the many good things my nation has done, and I’m ashamed of the many bad things my nation has done. But I feel that way – and am aware of the good things and the bad things – every single day. I don’t feel the need to set aside a particular day each year for it.
Call me unpatriotic if you like, but I’ve always been suspicious of patriotism. To my mind, patriotism is only a few steps away from nationalism, and nationalism is only a few steps away from fascism. I’m glad to be Australian, and I’m grateful for all this country has given me, but I express that by being a good citizen and doing my best to make this country better, not by sticking temporary tattoos on my face and waving a flag.
So moving or not moving the date is a race I do not have a horse in. As long as I get my day off work I don’t really care.
Adding some extra excitement to this year’s festivities is the debate (if bomb threats count as “debate”) over an Australia Day billboard featuring (OMG!) Muslims. The original billboard in Melbourne was taken down after the advertising company received threats, but in a nice example of the Streisand Effect this has prompted people to put up many more copies of it all over the place. Which has pissed off the Islamophobes even further. As with all issues of religion and race this is, frankly, a complete clusterfuck, but I can’t help but feel good about anything that makes bigots so angry. Generally speaking if whatever you’re doing is pissing off Nazis then you’re doing it right.
But anyway I didn’t come to talk about any of that. Came to talk about the Hottest 100.
I finally got around to voting some weeks back, and present below my favourite songs of the year. As is standard these days someone has done some number crunching and come up with a list of predictions, so I’ll reference the predicted placing and (when it comes up) the actual placing for each of my votes…
Girlie Bits – Ali Barter
Predicted Placing: 36
Actual Placing: 58 (Boo!)
Without a doubt my favourite track of the year – which given its very obvious 90’s stylings shows just how old and out of touch I am. It’s a song about being a female artist in the music industry, and how everyone wants you to write nice, pleasant, girlie songs about love and flowers and things, as opposed to anything that really matters, and to always look pretty and/or hot while singing them. A fantastic song on every level.
Daughter of the Light – Urthboy featuring Kira Puru
Predicted Placing: 168 (which is a fucking travesty)
The second best song of the year (as far as I’m concerned) is Urthboy’s tribute to his mum. Go and read the lyrics. Excuse me, I have something in my eye…
1955 – The Hilltop Hoods featuring Montaigne and Tom Thum
Predicted Placing: 6
Actual Placing: 4
Third best song of the year. Of all my choices, I think this one has the best chance of being number one. It most likely won’t be, but I’d be utterly shocked if it didn’t get into the top ten. A great track celebrating small-town life in the Adelaide hills with downright amazing vocals from Montaigne in the hook.
Genghis Khan – Miike Snow
Predicted Placing: 24
Actual Placing: 15
A catchy and slickly produced song with easily the best video of the year.
Catch 22 – Illy featuring Anne-Marie
Predicted Placing: 48
Actual Placing: 23
I’m really hitting the Aussie Hip-hop this year aren’t I? Catchy, fun tune simply about having a good time.
Weatherman – The Panics
Predicted Placing: 200+
Incredibly lush, spooky song with lots of layered, echoey sounds building to something truly epic. Probably too subtle for the common palate.
Frankie Sinatra – The Avalanches
Predicted Placing: 23
Actual Placing: 28
The Avalanches finally released their difficult second album last year with this infectious pile of rap and samples. The video clip however is one of those arty ones where the song keeps getting drowned out by the sound effects. As a short film it’s not bad. As a video clip it’s a bit crap.
Take Me Dancing – Sløtface
Predicted Placing – 200+ (Ridiculous!)
The video for Take Me Dancing on the other hand is deliberately cheap and amateurish. A great little rock-pop song, somewhat reminiscent of Metric (Haley Shea really sounds like Emily Haines on this track).
At this point I’d run out of tracks I really wanted to vote for, so I just grabbed the first two that came to mind that I liked. There’s nothing wrong with them, but there are plenty of other tracks I could have voted for as well. In hindsight I do regret not voting for Sarah Blasko’s cover of Life on Mars – which is predicted to come in at 88.
I Know A Girl – The Preatures
Predicted Placing – 176
The Arrow – Urthboy featuring Timberwolf
Predicted Placing – 200+
So there we go. I wonder how they’ll all go…