Staff pick: Hugs & Kisses with Envelope, Son of Dribble at Ace of Cups

A Friday show features a throwback pairing along with a more recent Band to Watch

Joel Oliphint
Columbus Alive
Hugs & Kisses in 2007

Various Alive staffers have been writing about Hugs & Kisses for 15 years now, though the performance art group has taken some breaks along the way. I assume the lineup still includes musical shape-shifter Jacoti Sommes (beats) and creative force Donny Monaco (vocals), who make a sound they once described as "R-rated children's music for adults."

If you haven't seen Hugs & Kisses live, I've always thought the best way into the group's ethos is probably through the YouTube channel of Monaco, who creates subversively bizarre animations that make Adult Swim content seem buttoned-up. 

Over the years, Monaco has also partnered up with local rapper Envelope, aka Tony Collinger, another vintage Columbus performer. Often, Monaco took on the role of Kitty Man at Envelope's shows (see this 2011 ComFest performance), acting like a hype man out of a Yo Gabba Gabba fever dream. He also growled the hook on 2008 Envelope song "Straight Up":

Expect some onstage Envelope/Hugs & Kisses collabs on Friday night at Ace of Cups, when these two long-running Columbus acts will be joined by Son of Dribble, one of the city's most exciting live bands in recent years and a torch-bearer for Hugs & Kisses' art-above-all ethos.

More:'Raw imagination' gives way to new scuzz-pop album from Son of Dribble

Correction: Sophie Harpo was originally listed as a member of Hugs & Kisses but is no longer a part of the group.