Weiß Kreuz recs this month. Because, you know. That's what I've been reading obsessively of late.
"Nerve", by Viridian5, is a psychotic love story featuring blood, sex, mayhem, and a copious side helping of blasphemy. Schuldig and Farfarello... connect... and even Crawford can't prevent what happens next. Wonderfully written, with a believably twisted and unrepentant Schuldig - no woobie here - and Schu/Farf is just... mmm. And. Schu in pigtails and a Catholic schoolgirl skirt. The mind boggles.
In a similar vein is V's Psycho Trip series ("Lost" and "Hold"), a succession of dark and bloody Aya/Farfarello encounters, where Farf drags Aya down into his little world. Not for the squeamish or faint of heart, but oh so good.
Moving right along: Aoe is a fantastic WK writer, and you should definitely read all her stuff, as well as that of her partners in crime, Shoori and Yanagi-sen. But don't start Aoe's fics till the weekend. Because they run really fucking long, as in averaging about 40 parts. So if you don't have, say, forty-eight hours free to squander, read "Guilty" and "Found Out About You" for a brief introduction to Aoe's world, where Yohji and Schuldig are star-crossed lovers and the angst is dealt in spades. She says she'll probably write a happy ending to the series sometime, but I hope not, because it's perfect just as it is. In fact, it says something good about Aoe's talent (I'm not sure what, but something) that she frequently uses techniques that drive me up the wall - bucketloads of angst, character apologia, over-use of epithets, we-are-family happy endings - and I rarely if ever notice, and in fact keep on comin' back for more. It's not the most technically skilled writing you'll ever read, but she has a deft touch with the characters that just resonates, it feels so right. So start with those two, and work your way through her opus. You won't regret it.
Added 4-19-03: Finally, someone's on my same wavelength! I spent all yesterday evening reading Truth's "Three Hour Tour" (and its sequels), a darkly comic Yohji/Omi series that tosses in Schuldig for good measure... and stirs well. (I posted a while ago about wanting some Y/O fic, mainly for the amusement value. Because imagine Yohji's chagrin. And then point at him and laugh, the poor sap.) "Three Hour Tour" isn't exactly what I had in mind, but it's close enough for jollies... and man, is it hot. Chagrined Yohji is the best. Warning, though: the series isn't finished, and it cuts off just as things start to get intriguing, plot-wise. I hate when that happens.
Ani diFranco's most recent live album, So Much Shouting, So Much Laughter, has received mixed reviews, but I gotta side with those who utterly and completely adore it. It's very different from Living In Clip, the last live album - SMSSML is jazzier, with a bigger, slower, more contemplative sound, and it has less of the manic energy that infused LIC - but who wants Living In Clip: The Sequel when you can listen the original? So Much Shouting is a something completely different, an original, lushly gorgeous aural experience, and with Ani going solo again after Evolve (another highly underrated album), it's pretty much the high water mark of her brass band period. Even songs from the lackluster Revelling/Reckoning - "Grey" and "Rock Paper Scissors", as well as the interminable "Tamburiza Lingua" - come alive here, proving that R/R could have been so much better if Ani had just picked up the pace a bit. But that's another rant. This one is: buy So Much Shouting, So Much Laughter and listen to it on a gray, rainy day. It's practically a religious experience if you do it right.
And if nothing else, buy this album for the sublime "Self Evident", a chilling beat poem about the effect of September 11 on America. It still gives me shivers.