Generic Pale malt (i.e. "2-Row", not to be confused with Pale Ale malt) doesn't have much of a flavor on its own (slightly grainy, like the poster before me pointed out), which is why many (but not all) SMaSH beers with 2-Row are somewhat uninspiring.
Maris Otter is a heritage strain of grain malted to be a Pale Ale malt, which has a rich, bready taste. It's quite distinct. Blended pale ale malts are somewhere in the middle, with most U.S. varieties slightly milder than continental European pale ale malts, and English pale ale malts being the most flavorful (with plenty of exceptions to that rule).
If your recipe calls for a Pale Ale malt but you can only get Pale 2-Row, it helps to add 8 oz or so of a Biscuit malt to produce some of the richer flavors. I like Briess Victory for this purpose.