Back on an indie label after an initially successful but ultimately unfruitful run at a major, L7 turns out a respectable but predictable effort with Slap-Happy. It's not that the band was sapped of strength once Jennifer Finch left, since they still sound hard and raw, angry even. It's just that their sound has become a bit pat. It's a problem, since L7 is the kind of band that can't really expand their musical horizons without running the risk of being labeled a sellout, but after a while, churning out a series of similar albums makes the limitations of the band painfully clear . That's not to say they're a bad band -- after all, bands as great as the Ramones painted themselves into a similar corner -- and that's not to say Slap-Happy isn't a good record. As a matter of fact, it's not bad, a few of the songs hit hard, and the band sounds energetic and muscular. As it's spinning, it's easy to get caught up in its momentum, but once it's finished, it's about as memorable as The Beauty Process -- which means it leaves very little lasting impression. Certainly, it hits hard enough to be of interest to longtime followers, but it does raise the question of where L7 goes from here.
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AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine