The man behind the Rutabega is Josh Hensley, and his debut album, Cobus Green (which is the trailer park where he used to live), primarily features acoustic guitar, but he also dabbles with some keyboards and sound effects. That being said, the album finds the Rutabega as a storyteller, much in the vein of Elliott Smith or Connor Oberst of Bright Eyes fame, but with his own twist on things. That means that some of the tunes include a Guided By Voices or Beck sense of oddity overridden with personal tales of frustrations, broken relationships, bitterness toward a conservative upbringing, and questions unanswered. Almost all of this was recorded on four-track cassette by Hensley, and he played most of the instruments, too. The lo-fi aspect doesn't mean poor production, however. Everything here sounds good, the only complaint being that a few of the songs have good ideas that aren't quite fleshed out enough. More diversity in the lyrics and the use of more formal song structures from time to time would strengthen this release. The Rutabega has much potential, and this will no doubt serve as a good starting point to the furtherance of his career.
Cobus Green Review
by Kurt Morris