I did find that I had an easier time listening to the music on the DVD when it was accompanied by the video. The two worked extremely well in tandem to help reduce the strangeness of the music and allow my brain to accept what I was listening to. Maybe it was because it was such an accurate visual representation of the concept (many parts going in to making a whole), that it was much easier to except the ambient nature of the music.
After only a minor amount of time had passed watching and listening to the DVD I discovered I began to enter a light trance that made it easier for me to obtain the state of mind required to appreciate the music. It was almost like looking at a painting and it's not until the component parts go slightly out of focus that you realize what you're looking at.
Listening to the CD alone it was a much more difficult exercise to be able to achieve that desired state. Maybe it was because I had just watched the DVD and I was suffering from slight information overload. I'm sure that the end result would be the same in the long run anyway, with the disparate sounds gradually merging and forming a whole.
Electronic compositions have always felt rather soulless, mainly because of the impersonal nature of the equipment used. To be able to take the music of an extremely gifted electronic composer like Iannis Xenakis and interpret what he did so that it can be appreciated on acoustic instruments like Reinhold Friedl has done with Xenakis [A]live is itself a great accomplishment.
The new CD/DVD package of the Zeitkratzer Ensemble performing this piece, and the accompanying video on the DVD by Video artist Lillevan, is a major step towards demystifying modern composition. It might never become everybody's cup of tea, but it maybe that much more accessible, that more then just a few will be able to appreciate it. Now that would be a real achievement.