like Live without the intensity (yikes!)

Superficial Self-Amusement (Outback Records)
The MissioNaries

By Kory Wilcoxson

What's notable about the MissioNaries? Besides that oddly placed capital N, not much.

That's the way they want it. There's not a lot that stands out about these guys. They're just a hard-working Midwestern band that likes its music solid.

The MissioNaries play with a drive similar to Live, but without the musicianship or, more importantly, the intensity. The group tends to walk through some of the songs when they should at least be jogging.

Nevertheless, Superficial Self Amusement does have glimmers of promise. "Relief" picks up the pace when the album needs it, and the desperation of "In the Park" shows that lead singer Greg Krutsinger can turn on the emotion when prodded. If the MissioNaries could string a few of their better songs together, they could really make some noise. As for now, inconsistency makes this album simply good.