It's only when you listen to Curtis Mayfield's 1972 soundtrack to Superfly that you can truly get past the film's dated cinematography and bad acting. As most folks with clues realize, Superfly is one of the most influential R&B recordings of the 1970s (the majority of Seattle Grunge Rockers cite this album as an inspiration), and while some of the slang terms are less effective adjectives than flashbacks to yesteryear, they're true to their time. (Admit it; you've never been able to say 'junkie' with a straight face.)
Mayfield's Superfly was probably the most important record for shaping the future of black music. This is one of the first releases to include to the trademark blaxploitation smooth-funk sound. Right from the record's opening of bongos, hammond organ and hi-hats giving way to a distant, wailing electric guitar, bass drum, and strings and horn sections, it's obvious that this is the production that led to similar work by Issac Hayes and even James Brown.
This 25th Anniversary edition gives the album's original image a complete facelift with multi-gatefold packaging, a massive book of liner notes and interviews, remastered sound, and an additional disc filled entirely with newly-discovered outtakes, demos, radio spots and interviews from the Superfly sessions. Four years ago, I found Issac Hayes' Shaft on vinyl for a buck in a thrift store and it became the ultimate "sex music" of my late-teen life. It's got nothin' on Superfly.