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Anti-Flag does it big in Europe
• Wiz Khalifa and Mac Miller weren't the only Pittsburgh artists playing to the masses last week.
On Thursday, Pittsburgh punks Anti-Flag played to the biggest crowd of its career at the Przystanek Woodstock festival in Poland.
"They say 700,000 people visit the festival over the entire weekend," singer-bassist Chris #2 noted in email, "and before we went on, a translator had the festival owner explain to us they were at 350,000 at our set time. So crazy."
Just days before that, the Pittsburgh band played sold-out shows in Hamburg and Berlin to benefit Pussy Riot, the Russian feminist punk band that is on trial in Moscow for "hooliganism." Anti-Flag and the Berlin crowd all donned balaclavas for the show, a trademark of the Russian group.
Anti-Flag has also recorded a cover of that band's "Virgin Mary, Redeem us of Putin" to raise awareness.
Anti-Flag's Euro festival run continues in Hungary and Austria this weekend, then moves on Switzerland, Italy and the Czech Republic, among other countries, before wrapping up at the Reading Festival and Leeds Festival in England Aug. 24 and 25.
Wiz wows with cover
• Wiz Khalifa had the Twitterverse abuzz Tuesday night when released the cover of his forthcoming album, "O.N.I.F.C.," which has him looking like a cross between Jimi Hendrix and Cruella de Vil.
Rapper Tyler, the Creator tweeted, "THAT IS ONE OF THE GREATEST [EXPLETIVE] ALBUM COVERS IN THE [EXPLETIVE] WORLD."
Another tweeter posed the question: "Why is Wiz Khalifa on my timeline looking like a Tim Burton production of '101 Dalmatians'?"
The album will be released on Sept. 18.
The Hillbillies are back
• After a nearly five-year split, six members of the popular local country band The Povertyneck Hillbillies are reuniting as The Hillbilly Way.
The first show back -- billed as "The Hillbilly State of Mind Tailgate Party" -- takes place Aug. 25 at Consol Energy Park in Washington, Pa., with singer Abby Abbondanza, guitarists David Guthrie and Bob Crafton, bassist Jeff Volek, keyboardist Dave Cramer and drummer Ryan Lucotch. Not returning is Chris Higbee, who is replaced by guest fiddle player John Parrendo.
On the night of the show, the band will release a four-song EP that includes the single "My Kinda Sunday" on the local Rhythm House Records.
"This is a long time coming, and it will be great to see old and new friends," Mr. Abbondanza, who had gone off to a solo career, said in a statement. "We have been working on this for over a year, and we have a few surprises in store for the fans. This is way more than just a reunion for us. We want people to come early, reunite with friends and the band and make a day of it. We plan to be out in the parking lot with everyone the day of the show to spend as much time with people as possible."
Parking lots open at 3 p.m. and gates open at 4 p.m. for the 4:30 p.m. show with The Steve Smith Band, Ruff Creek and Vanessa Campagna.
First Published August 9, 2012 12:00 am