Dr. Ring-Ding and the Senior All-Stars, "Big Man"
Love a trombonist/singer!
Madvillain, the collaboration between MF Doom and Madlib, is such an incredible record, it's a shame that there's no followup to it. This is a great example of the wizardry - it's only a minute and a half, but the beat sounds amazing and Doom is on top of his game, so it feels like a whole song. With the belated announcement of Doom's death last year, this is a perfect time to listen to this album again.
Dilated Peoples, "Work the Angles"
Early 2000s underground hip-hop represent! The Platform was a record that made a lot of waves in the underground at the time it was released, as another back-to-basics record along the lines of what Jurassic 5 was putting out back then. In the end, it doesn't break any new ground (intentionally!), but it's a good listen.
Minus The Bear, "Throwin' Shapes"
The official Five Songs position on Minus The Bear is: good! Not really for me! Won't turn them off when they come on!
Town Portal, "Archright"
Town Portal, out of Denmark, play a brand of instrumental math rock that is straight out of the Don Caballero playbook. This sort of thing has to strike a balance between the instrumental wizardry and, you know, actual songs. Too much in the way of pyrotechnics, and it's just sterile wankery. Town Portal do a nice job with the balance, and this album (Of Violence) is very good.