One of the most talented and malleable of R&B stars, R. Kelly can change guises to suit his ever-changing moods -- from God-fearing sinner to smooth-crooning party man to horny devil. In fact, his seemingly contradictory identities inform his populist approach to music, which has resulted in some of the most enjoyable R&B of the last two decades, including songs that run the gamut from "I Believe I Can Fly" to "Fiesta" and "Feelin' on Yo Booty." On the double-disc Happy People/U Saved Me, Kelly splits his competing interests literally down the middle, tempering the lewd references with feel-good vibes on the Happy People disc and reserving the U Saved Me half for inspirational R&B hymns. Happy People is devoted to the slick, wide-open grooves popular in Chicago's stepping dance scene. Although the repetitive instructional rhythm gets a bit tiresome, Kelly gets kudos for his utopian vision on the Marvin Gayeinspired, conga-accented standout track, "If I Could Make the World Dance." But if Kelly sees the unifying power of ballroom twirls, he also imparts, on the companion disc, his belief that true salvation comes from a higher power. Given his much-publicized sex scandal, the repentant testifying found here might reek of heavy-handed manipulation in less capable hands. You can almost hear his tears ker-plunking when he questions the Almighty's unconditional love for him on "How Did You Manage." Like a practiced preacher, however, Kelly combines soaring vocals with Everyman lyrics about drunk driving, cancer, and unemployment on the title track, "U Saved Me," and even a hoop star's struggle with algebra on "Prayer Changes." He places life lessons amid lush gospel choir swells and meditative funk grooves, and you wind up cheering for the unlikely choirboy. At the end of Happy People's "Weatherman," Kelly states: "This album was designed to touch your soul / Put your spirit at ease." Mission accomplished.