Penderecki has produced works more mindblowing and invigorating (out of all the composers I've heard so far - plenty still to discover!). Xenakis' ouevre covers orchestral, chamber, solo and choral music, as well as towering masterpieces of brain-melting electroacoustic racket like this one.
Persépolis was the soundtrack to a massive light spectacle devised by Xenakis for the 1971 Shiraz Arts Festival in Iran, set in the ruins of a Persian temple. It was the grandest in scale of all of his polytopes - works for sound and architecture, the full immersive effect of which we can now only guess at.
What we're left with as the audio document of this event is a stereo mix of around 50 minutes of crashing and creaking percussion and processed electronics. This still has an overwhelming effect at full volume - the only way to listen to it, trust me. There's a handful of different mixes available - this one was realised by German sound artist Daniel Teige, who would go on to direct a 'tribute' performance of the work in Los Angeles in 2010.
We bear the light of the earth