Justin Tolan, from Cumming, Georgia, submitted his 4 song instrumental demo entitled Requiem, a musically demanding tribute to some of his most highly regarded influences. Solidly cast in the neo-classical metal form, Tolan has practiced diligently in order to record pieces that reflect his classical influences and the modern approach to classical metal music of shredders such as George Bellas, Jason Becker and Yngwie Malmsteen. The opening track, "Tyreal's Path" sets the stage, matching precision with speed, and letting the listener know that Tolan is a player to reckoned with. The last piece, "Crucified" is a heavily arpeggiated production, with an incredible display of fretboard fireworks over a fairly lean and basic drum machine and bass rhythm bed - it takes a certain amount of ability to make a track stand out in that environment. As young as he is, Tolan has the time and motivation to keep bettering himself and forging his own unique path in the neo-classical world.
Justin has been playing guitar since 1997, focusing his studies on the metal/neo-classical genre. With his music, he hopes to pay homage to his predecessors and influences (including players such as Malmsteen, Corbin King, Bellas, Vinnie Moore, Tony MacAlpine, Richie Blackmore, Becker, Uli Jon Roth and Gary Moore) in an appeasing manner, as well as turn some kids his age onto the metal /neo-classical style of music. For the future, Justin plans to keep playing live and he is currently writing a full-length album that will feature counterpoint, odd meter, harmony and all the other recognizable elements that make up neo-classical music. He also mentioned that he finds classical composers such as Mozart, Bach, Chopin, Vivaldi and Beethoven to be highly influential.
After Tolan finishes high school in a couple of years, he is headed to the Berklee College of Music in Boston.