A more mature and focused Kelis greets listeners on this, her second U.S. album (third internationally).

A more mature and focused Kelis greets listeners on this, her second U.S. album (third internationally). But the singer is no less sultry—check out the alluring photos in the CD booklet—or sexually provocative and frank, as evidenced by the double-entendre-mixing, Neptunes-produced "Milkshake." The ultra-hot single is the artist's first tune to click with U.S. audiences since her 1999 scream fest "Caught Out There" from debut album "Kaleidoscope." Still fusing hip-hop, R&B, soul, dance/electronic and rock, Kelis orchestrates a more intimate affair that alternately jams ("Protect My Heart" wonderfully recalls Lisa Lisa & Cult Jam) and sensually flows (the smooth "Glow"). Guest turns come from Raphael Saadiq, OutKast's Andre 3000 and Kelis' fiance, Nas. Not every song is a winner, but "Tasty" does find Kelis on the right path—one that is musically rich and diverse. Give thanks.—GM