yeah, that's certainly what it comes down to for me as well. he holds your interest and has an unpredictable factor in his playing. he doesn't throw a lot of notes at you just for the sake of it. every note counts. as amazing as his chops are, it's the phrasing ideas and feel that i find more impressive. the guy is a monster.
That harmonic thingy is an EVH trick. I think it's in the beginning of Somebody Get Me A Doctor. Pull off something like 5-3-0 on the bass string (or whichever) repeatedly and then drag your right hand palm or finger along the string to get the harmonics.
All of that begs another question which is where on earth did Eddie come up with that?