Global Politics

American Band Bloodhound Gang Sparks Outrage in Russia

Against all odds the one-hit wonder, Bloodhound Gang has made headlines once again.

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Who, you're saying? Remember their 1999 hit "The Bad Touch" with it's risque chorus: "you and me baby ain't nothing but mammals so let's do it like they do on the Discovery Channel."

At a concert late last month in the Ukraine the bassist of the band, "Evil" Jared Hasselhoff – no relation to David Hasselhoff – surprised both fans and his band mates when he urinated on the Ukrainian flag on stage. To add insult to injury, at a concert the following day he shoved a Russian flag down the front of his pants screaming out the phrase, "Don't tell Putin."

Despite his request, the video of the act went viral in Russia. The stunt might not have been the wisest move since the next stop on Bloodhound Gang's tour was a music festival in the Russia city of Anapa.

Russia's culture minister, Vladimir Medinsky, wrote on Twitter, "these idiots are not going to perform" in Russia. And the Russian concert was swiftly cancelled along with the band's visas.

Russia has severaly overreacted according to Russian music journalist Art Troitsky.

"While I do believe that what they did to the Russian national flag is rather of nasty, on the other hand this is the rock n' roll; this is the punk behavior," said Troitsky.

However, punk behavior and political statements by music stars aren't taken lightly in Russia. Members of the feminist punk band Pussy Riot remain in jail and even Western pop divas aren't safe from scrutiny.

Rock divas Lady Gaga and Madonna ran into problems with the Russian government after performing in Russia last year. Both singers were threatened with criminal investigations after making pro-gay statements at their Russian concerts.

Evil Jared Hasselhoff wasn't speaking out for human rights but his flag stuffing stunt has riled not just the Kremlin but crowds of pro-Kremlin supporters.

They threw rotten eggs and fruit at the band's van as it rushed to the Anapa airport. And then a group of self-proclaimed Cossacks attacked Hasselhoff at the airport's lounge. One angry Cossack apparently tried to strangle him with an American flag.

"We are right now in the middle of growing anti-American and anti-Western rhetoric which is one of the cornerstones of our government," said Russian rock journalist Misha Kozyrev.

Kozyrev says Bloodhound Gang's act just adds fuel to an already smoldering xenophobic fire.

"Here is this bunch of idiots that come and do some stupid thing, not for anything. It still crosses out the efforts of anyone from Madonna to Red Hot Chili Peppers that dared to raise their voice for a good cause,"said Kozyrev.

And as Obama cancels his meeting with Putin next month, the last thing that U.S., Russian relations needs right now is another international incident at a Russian Airport.