It’s truly a question that future historians will be asking one another around giant oak tables in the world’s finest academic buildings: just how did grime duo Krept & Konan end up in the Channel 4 News studio discussing 2016’s greatest music beef (so far, anyway) with Krishnan Guru-Murthy?
When Chip – formerly known as the chart-bothering Chipmunk – made a subtle dig at fellow London MC Yungen’s nomination as Best Newcomer at the 2015 MOBO Awards (“Some of your best newcomers ain’t new / So if you’re gonna nominate Yungen, big up, but nominate Sneakbo too”), little did the now-warring artists know that their dirty laundry would be aired on national TV, with Guru-Murthy asking K&K the words: “You’re friends with Yungen, and everyone’s waiting for him to respond to Chip, do you think he should?”
OK, while the south London double act weren’t booked onto Channel 4 News to exclusively discuss the Chip and Yungen beef – they were instead there to talk about the important debate surrounding the lack of diversity at tonight’s BRIT Awards – but the topic was just demanding to be examined.
In case you’ve missed 2016’s version of the Drake and Meek Mill beef – which is an even better comparison when you find out that Chip once collaborated with the latter, only for Meek to fail to remember Chip’s name when asked by a reporter to name his favourite British rappers – here’s a quick catch-up on the rivalry that’s dominated timelines, UK trending topics and YouTube grime accounts over the past month or so.
After Yungen took that Chip bar as an insult, he released a freestyle that included the lines “Man wanna talk about me at the MOBOs like I ain’t heard it / Man wanna talk about my nomination like I don’t deserve it”. Fast forward to a week ago, and Chip’s response: ‘One Take Freestyle’ addressed the now-escalating tensions with the belligerent opening bar “I take shots at MCs when I want, like what?”
Jeeeeeeez – Yungen sprung into action, and the disagreement got personal. Released on the same day as ‘One Take Freestyle’, ‘Punk (Shitmunk Diss)’ landed on YouTube. As Youngen larks around a petrol station – a send-up of an old Chip video from the time he had beef with this year’s NME Awards Tour opener Bugzy Malone – his words pack a powerful punch: “Man wanna talk about newcomer / And I can’t lie, blud, it’s true / Probably should have been Best Hip-Hop / But what the fuck’s that gotta do with you? Dickhead”. Where’s that fire emoji?
Chip didn’t take this lying down, however, and retorted with ‘Michelle Riddim (Clive Diss)’ – Clive referring to, of course, Yungen’s real name. He also turned the tables on his new nemesis by starting the track with a clip of an old interview Yungen had done where he’d praised Chip – such sneak tactics, but so good.
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Yungen of course responded by firstly ripping Chip’s ‘Oopsy Daisy’ instrumental, and then crushing it into a ball and throwing it in an incinerator. Oh, and for its accompanying video clip, Yungen hired a load of Smart cars – it turns out that Chip used to quite like driving in the miniature, city-friendly vehicle, and Yungen finds that pretty damn hilarious.
And then – phew, catch your breath a minute – the last shot (for now, at least) was fired as Chip appeared to sign off from the feud with ‘L (Lil Clive Diss 2)’, which served the purpose of raining down further insults on his sparring partner.
But with the issue now clearly a matter of national debate, it’s surely only a small matter of time now before distinguished Labour and Conservative peers are arguing in the House of Lords over whose diss track went the hardest, while David Dimbleby fails to keep order in Basingstoke as the Question Time panel falls out with one another over whether Link Up TV should take down Chip’s ‘Oopsy Daisy’ instrumental from its YouTube channel per the artist’s request.
Forget Drake and Meek Mill – this is the real rap beef of our time. What a time to be alive.