Sun Kil Moon v War on Drugs: 2014’s biggest indie beef broke out at in September when a festival set from Mark Kozelek aka Sun Kil Moon was interrupted by what he called War On Drugs’ “beer-commercial lead-guitar shit” coming from another stage. Kozelek wrote a protest song, ‘War On Drugs: Suck My Cock’, while Adam Granduciel responded calling him a “prick” and “such a fucking child”.
Billy Bragg vs Kasabian: Bragg is no stranger to the beef, taking on the might of YouTube earlier this year and the even higher and mightier Nicky Wire in days of yore. This time he told an interviewer ahead of this year’s Glasto that Kasabian were “there to remind us how true Spinal Tap is”. Serge hit back, calling Bragg “embarrassing”.
Jack White vs The Black Keys: Private emails from Jack White to ex-wife Karen Elson entered the public domain causing him much embarrassment. White raged about his kids attending the same school as Black Keys’ singer Dan Auerbach, claiming he’d ripped his act off. Auerbach was gracious about the whole thing, and White issued an apology.
The Orwells vs Arctic Monkeys: Little brother is watching you, or so it appeared when young support act The Orwells analysed Arctic Monkeys’ performance over a number of tour dates and said the show had become “synchronised”. Alex Turner hit back: “They should have been out trying to get laid instead of watching us every night.”
Ariel Pink vs Grimes: Grimes piled in on Twitter accusing Pink of “delusional misogyny”, saying it was “emblematic of the kind of bullshit every woman in this industry faces daily”. She added: “UGHHHH Ariel Pink is the fucking WORST”. Pink, who’d incidentally been maced by a feminist recently, told the Guardian that Grimes was “completely stupid and retarded”.
Lorde vs Diplo: When Diplo tweeted “someone should make a Kickstarter to get Taylor Swift a booty”, Lorde – on Swift’s behalf – hit back with the perfectly aimed: “should we do something about your tiny penis while we’re at it?” Lorde later claimed there was no animosity, and that Diplo is like “a big brother”, adding that special friendship is about “not letting them say stupid shit.”
Diddy vs Drake: Diddy vs Drake might sound like the title of an episode of Donald Duck Presents, but it was deadly serious when the Diddy man was swinging at the Canadian rapper outside a nightclub in Miami in early December. “You will never disrespect me,” Diddy is alleged to have shouted before thwacking Drizzy. Multiple theories abound as to why.
Ariel Pink vs Madonna: Ariel Pink proved once again this year that he’s the Katy Hopkins of indie rock when he announced he was writing for Madonna to try to help her avert her “downward slide”. Madonna’s manager tweeted that he and Her Madge “had never heard of Ariel Pink” and that “M has no interest in working with mermaids”.
Snoop Dogg vs Iggy Azalea: An internet feud broke out between Snoop and Iggy Azalea when the former posted a picture on Instagram comparing the latter to Marlon Wayans’ character from the White Chicks movie. Iggy shot Snoop down on Twitter and the Dogg later apologised.
Nicki Minaj vs Iggy Azalea: Azalea was believed to be the target of barbed comments in July when Minaj accepted her BET Best Female Hip Hop award. “When you hear Nicki spit, you know she wrote it,” she said in the third person (rumours persist that TI ghostwrites Iggy’s material).
Alex Kapranos vs Pharrell Williams: Alex Kapranos jumped on Twitter to accuse Pharrell of ripping off the riff from ‘Take Me Out’ for the Paloma Faith hit ‘Can’t Rely On You’. “If you want to borrow a riff,” said Alex, “just ask” (which is a little rich coming from Franz Ferdinand, sorry Alex!) The NERD star remained silent and Kapranos apologised “for all the press BS” the following day.
Azealia Banks vs Iggy Azalea: Beef-wise, Azealia Banks fell relatively quiet in 2014 as she attempted to let the music do the talking, but took a swipe at her near namesake, reigniting a feud stretching back to 2012. Regarding the death of Eric Garner, Banks said it was funny how “Igloo Australia silent when these things happen… black culture is cool, but black issues sure aren’t, huh?”
Miley Cyrus vs Mexico: Ever controversial, Cyrus upset the whole of Mexico earlier this year when, during a routine from her show, her dancer took the flag of the country and appeared to floss the singer’s prosthetic buttcheeks with it. Worse still, the incident took place on Mexican Independence Day, leading a politician to petition the government to fine Cyrus and incarcerate her.
Taylor Swift vs Spotify: Taylor Swift upset the proverbial apple cart when she upped and took her songs away from Spotify earlier in the year, leading to a record number of thought pieces. MD Daniel Ek responded with a lengthy blog post explaining his frustration and disappointment and added that Spotify had paid out “two billion to labels” since it started in 2008.
Eminem vs women: Eminem showed himself up this year, when he threatened to “punch” Lana Del Rey and “rape” Iggy Azalea in two different songs. The latter hit back, saying she was “bored of old men threatening young women as entertainment”. Charli XCX got involved, summing up the feelings of most of the world when she called the real dim shady “disgusting”.
Lily Allen vs Jourdan Dunn: A spat broke out between Allen and model Dunn on Twitter after the singer referenced her in the song ‘Insincerely Yours’ in a verse that also included the words “ugly kids”. Allen said she only used her name because it rhymed with “one”. “Lyrical genius,” retorted Dunn. “People are gagging for beef” added an annoyed Allen.
Lily Allen vs Bob Geldof: Band Aid 30 was criticised by Lily Allen, Damon Albarn and even Emeli Sande (who appeared on the record). Lily called it “smug” and said she’d prefer to donate “actual money”. Sir Bob hit back, saying many of the artists had contributed: “Should we take a pop at everybody who is immensely talented and has money?”
Vanilla Ice vs Wiz Khalifa: A turtle power struggle broke out when Vanilla Ice criticised Wiz Khalifa’s Ninja Turtles theme ‘Shell Shocked’, saying it was “artificial” and put together by “the corporate world”. Khalifa said he believed that coming from the man who wrote the theme song to ‘The Secret of the Ooze’ he “felt like his opinion was super-valid”. That’s not how you do beef, Wiz!
Phil Rudd vs his bodyguard: AC/DC drummer Phil Rudd’s increasingly bizarre behaviour, thought to be the result of a nasty meth addiction, manifested itself when Rudd tried to attack his own bodyguard this month. The coffee shop owner where the scuffle broke out said it was like watching “a Chihuahua trying to fight a big dog.”
Miley Cyrus vs Ed Sheeran: When Ed Sheeran stood up to collect his Best Male Video award at the MTV VMAs, it was noted that he high-fived everyone around him, except Miley Cyrus. Proof of a beef goes even deeper than that folks, as if you look really closely at Cyrus, she appears to mouth the words “asshole.” Sheeran has denied a rift despite all this incontrovertible evidence.
Solange vs Jay Z: No internet spat here, but the real thing. Solange was caught on film lashing out at Jay Z in a hotel elevator following the Met Gala Ball in New York. The singer and sister of Beyonce had to be restrained. In a joint statement they said “Jay and Solange each assume their share of responsibility for what has occurred,” and the family have “worked through it”.
Riff Raff v Sam Smith: Sam Smith provoked the ire of rapper Riff Raff when the singer cut him out of an Instagram snap taken at the VMAs that featured Katy Perry and Charli XCX. Riff Raff tweeted: “thanks for cutting me out of the picture, you chubby little fuck factory. Ps: Your face is super huge”.
Morrissey vs Kristeen Young: Morrissey mostly concerned himself with digs at the Royal Family and label Harvest this year, though he did have a bizarre bout with support act Kristeen Young that resulted in him throwing her off tour for giving him a “horrendous cold”. This happened once before in 2007 apparently, when she told a crowd on opening night that Moz gives “good head”.
Bette Midler vs Ariana Grande: “You don’t have to make a whore out of yourself to get ahead,” the veteran singer said about Grande recently, “It’s always surprising to see someone with that silly high voice slithering around on a couch looking so ridiculous.” Ariana hit back: “Bette was always a feminist who stood for women being able to do whatever the F they wanted without judgement!”
Lil Mo vs Prince: It’s a shame Prince left the internet, because his tarty comeback to Lil Mo was priceless. Mo was furious when she was unable to go to the toilet at a festival they both played, as Prince had shut the whole area off prior to going on stage. Mo also claimed Prince couldn’t hit the high notes. His royal purpleness later tweeted: “I hope she know, none of her clothes match.”
Prince vs the Internet: In 2010 Prince declared that the internet “was over”. Reluctantly he skulked back, but just last month, the Minneapolis-born singer decided to take his ball home again, removing his twitter account, as well as Facebook and Instagram and all music from Soundcloud. It seems the internet is over for him at least. The internet hit back immediately, as it does.
Courtney Love v Dave Grohl: And finally… the biggest beef of them all for the last 20 years came to an end when Nirvana were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and arch nemeses Courtney Love and Dave Grohl blew everyone’s minds by hugging. Each other! It’s never too late to spread some love!