With fourteen tracks and a running time of over one hour, Abstract View is a dense and ambitious debut. View (slated for release this Saturday, November 18, at the Oriental Theater) exhibits a particularly straightforward approach to mainstream rock. At times the guitar tones are fuzzed just enough to recall Siamese Dream-era distortion, while at others the labored fretwork evokes early Tool. However, the varied scope of the Katalyst trio -- vocalist/guitarist Matt Kavan, bassist Matt Skellenger and drummer Dave Miller -- is generally distracting. Despite stellar musicianship, Abstract View lacks cohesiveness, and the jumbled weight of all the different songs is almost too much to bear. There are a few standouts, such as the title track, but it's hard to distinguish the hits when there's so much stuff packed into this tiny plastic disc. Just because you can put 77 minutes' worth of music on a CD doesn't mean you should.
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