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There was no caging Glass Animals as the British psychedelic-pop purists’ “Heat Waves” took out triple j’s Hottest 100, the annual countdown that’s been described as the world’s biggest music democracy.

“So scary releasing records in a pandemic without the support of tour, friends, family and team,” reads a message from Glass Animals posted soon after their name was called out. “Australia has always had a special place in our hearts…and now…it will have a special place on our butts. anyone know a good tattoo artist?”

2020 was a scary year for many, but “Heat Waves” was just the tonic for thousands of Australians. “From the ethereal opening bars, ‘Heat Waves’ perfectly encapsulates the collective mood of the past 12 months,” comments triple j’s Music Director Nick Findlay.

The track is lifted from Dreamland, the Dave Bayley-led band’s third and most successful album to-date, with a No. 6 peak on the ARIA Albums Charts.

“Heat Waves” was one of the act’s three entries in the countdown, including “Tangerine” (No. 18) and “Your Love” (No. 51), and it’s their first appearance in the Top 10.

Close behind was Spacey Jane’s “Booster Seat” and Flume’s “The Difference” featuring Toro y Moi, respectively.

The annual list offers a deep dive into young Australians’ music tastes.

Seven women feature in the Top 10, including Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion, G Flip, Billie Eilish, Peppa from Spacey Jane, Jen from Ball Park Music and Cesira from The Jungle Giants, while Cardi B makes Hottest 100 history as the first female rapper to feature in the Top 10, with “WAP” at No. 6.

Also, Indigenous artists accounted for six of the top 100 songs, an all-time high, including two from The Kid Laroi and one each from Thelma Plum, Sycco, Beddy Rays and Birdz, who debuts Badtjala language in the countdown.

They didn’t win this time, but Lime Cordiale should feel like winners. The sibling act landed five songs in the countdown, a feat equaled by Billie Eilish (in 2019) and Violent Soho (2016), and just one shy of Wolfmother’s six-song benchmark set in 2005.

Triple J’s annual countdown boasts 66 songs from homegrown artists, tying with the 2016 poll as the most Australian entries.

Check out the full list here.

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