The cover art of Clay Class is a hint of the rich starkness inside. Cleverly named British duo Prinzhorn Dance School, (made up of Tobin Prinz and Suzi Horn), delivers a visceral slice of life with a slick bleakness that hasn’t reared its head this seductively since the first days of post-punk. This isn’t a dig; I’m addicted.
Yes, it’s hard to mention Prinzhorn without at least a nod to Wire, the Fall, or Gang of Four as reference point, since the Brighton/Portsmouth girl/boy duo’s bass-front, minimal guitar and tight drums sound, along with their enigmatic, quasi-political/poetic lyrics, and call-and-response, tensely-wrought, partly-barked vocals might not have evolved so well if it hadn’t been for their 80s post-punk forebears. “Your Fire Has Gone Out” is sharp, but seems born of a prior decade, though standouts like the single “Happy in Bits” and the almost-poppy “I Want You” break into captivating, rhythmic builds that are gorgeously modern and bright. (DFA)