My attempt to blog all of the entries from the book 1001 Albums to Hear Before You Die
Brief Background: Superfly was recorded in 1971 and 1972 and was released in July of 1972. The album is the soundtrack of the movie of the same name. The album out grossed the movie.
What I think: I really loved the Shaft soundtrack from Isaac Hayes and hoped this one would be a great experience as well. Unfortunately, for me, there are just too many more negatives here than positives. I’ll start with the big one. I’m just not really a fan of Mayfield’s voice. That falsetto/high register singing kind of grates on me. Then there is the use of the Wah-wah on nearly every track. I can get behind some of it, but to use it through the whole album is just too much. The title track “Superfly” actually does a really nice job with the Wah-Wah. It’s in there, but it’s blended nicely with the horns, and bass. It really isn’t trying to be the highlight and if the rest of the album did it that way, I would maybe enjoy it more.
That being said, there is a really positive element here, as the socially conscious lyrics throughout the album really strike a chord and highlight the horrors of the inner-city poverty of the seventies and actually make the album worth listening to just to here them. My favorite songs here are the ones that get away from that Wah-Wah a bit in “Freddie’s Dead” and “Eddie You Should Know Better”.
Do I agree or disagree with the writers as to this being an album you must listen to? I’m really on the fence here and can’t decide whether it should be in the list or not. I’ll give it a pass for it’s lyrics and the fact that it has huge historical and social significance for early seventies funk.
Rating (Out of 5): 2
Superfly Amazon Review (Out of 5): 5
Is this my first time hearing this album? Yes (194/256)
Percentage of Albums that are new to me: 76%