This album is the first I’ve heard from this pianist, still under under 40, who does the bulk of his performing in Europe. Classical music is overflowing with young talent, I hear nothing but excellent string quartets, singers, and pianists. What sets them apart is their mental artistry, their thinking.
And this is a thoughtful album. The music on here, set chronologically starting with Dussek, through Beethoven and Chopin, ending with Debussy and Rzewski, tells the story of the development in how composers both thought about the piano and how they thought about themselves, the great break in the Western art music tradition coming when Beethoven stopped telling us what he thought about the world around him and instead revealed to us the world inside him.
While this may technically be more evolutionary than revolutionary (there’s no Cowell nor Cage), it is still a fascinating journey, and Kadouch’s pellucid sound and unobtrusive power describe it well. The pieces themselves grow more interesting to me as the pianist moves through time, culminating in a lovely performances of Janacek’s gorgeous and haunting Sonata 1.X.1905. One of my picks for best classical album of 2019.