Mahavishnu Orchestra's first LP, The Inner Mounting Flame, from 1971.
Their second LP, Birds of Fire, from 1972.
Two things spurred these purchases:
1. I had a beyond cool class called American Popular Music during my freshman year of college. Dr. Martin Jack Rosenblum taught the class and he'd played these guys during a lecture on jazz and its influence on rock music. The song he played: The Inner Mounting Flame's "Meeting Of The Spirits," a veritable explosion of sound and melody. The song came to mind a few days ago, so I looked it up on YouTube, played it, and listened to it anew after 7 years.
2. Henry Rollins mentioned Birds of Fire's title track in his book Fanatic! He writes:
This is John McLaughlin's monster band....if you like what you hear, the record is cool and so is The Inner Mounting Flame. I think [Black Flag's guitarist] Greg Ginn really got a lot from McLaughlin and this record.