Worldwide Underground

The most psychedelic of soul singers, Erykah Badu still hasn't found her way through the haze. Most of the songs on this short album are variations on some atmospheric theme: Tracks such as "Bump It" and "Back in the Day" don't unfold so much as they slither along unthreateningly. Only the robustly crunk "Danger" and "I Want You" break the mold; the latter closes with one minute of video-game synth anarchy, which is pretty cool — unfortunately, that's the last of ten minutes. Most promisingly, Badu updates last year's hit "Love of My Life" — in a nod to Sequence's femme-rap classic "Funk You Up" — with verses from Queen Latifah, Angie Stone and Bahamadia. The rest just goes on and on.