It comes as no surprise that Eddie Van Halen's stunning technical abilities as a guitarist spawned legions of imitators. Like Hendrix, his style was so fresh and so revolutionary that many ambitions axe-slingers strived to copy it. Throughout the early '80s, his fluid, speedy hammer-ons and impeccable phrasing could be heard on metal, rock, and pop recordings of all stripes. Soon, there was a whole subgenre of metal containing nothing but guitar virtuosos, or "shredders." Within these shredders, there was a subset of guitarists who were equally influenced by classical music and Van Halen's guitar style. They applied hammers and sweep-picking to classical pieces, using them as vehicles for their prodigious technical abilities.