savatage tso jon oliva chris caffery johnny lee middleton jeff plate al pitrelli zak stevens

first ever machines of grace live performances to take place in september

Metalheads take note - September will see the first-ever performances from fast rising rockers, Machines of Grace. The shows will include a pair of performances in New York, as well as an additional one in Ohio.

Additionally, the group will appear the same month on several renowned radio shows, including House Of Hair, CNN's Measure To Measure program, The Chop Shop Radio Show, Tour Bus Radio, and SiriusXM Radio with Eddie Trunk.

Comprised of band members Zak Stevens (vocals, whose credits include Circle II Circle, Savatage), Matt Leff (guitars), Chris Rapoza (bass), and Jeff Plate (drums, whose credits include Trans Siberian Orchestra, Savatage, Metal Church), the Boston-based band manages to both pay tribute to their metal forefathers while also keeping a modern hard rock edge throughout their just-issued self-titled debut.

"We're excited to get on stage and play this material live," says Leff. "As Zak pointed out in a recent interview, it'll be a real trip looking across the stage and seeing us playing live together again. We've got a very short window of opportunity for shows because Jeff starts his TSO rehearsals in early October. We'll do these three shows for now and tour more extensively in early 2010."

"I feel like these are going to be some of the most relaxed, yet intense shows I've been involved with in a long time," adds Stevens. "Simply because the material is so familiar and this band represents what our initial rock and roll dreams were. My first shot at being a live vocalist was with these guys. So for me, playing with MoG is like coming full circle."

Machines of Grace has garnered glowing reviews from such esteemed online music sources as (who describe the group as "A throwback to a simpler time when the almighty riff and strong melody lines ruled a la Badlands, Brother Cane and Tangier; raucous, groove-ridden soul to the max") and All Music Guide (who raved "Machines of Grace do possess an unmistakable '80s flair about them - but with a much more succinct and mainstream rock-based songwriting style"). And now, not only will you be able to truly understand what all the early buzz is about with their debut recording, but lucky fans will get the opportunity to experience it all on a concert stage.

Lastly, Plate adds his thoughts about taking Machines of Grace out on the road. "My thoughts on playing live with this group for the first time? Excited, anxious, confident... Machines Of Grace is that '71 Chevelle SS that you have been working on in your shop for years. Now it's time to take it to the strip and show it off! It has been 10 years since I performed on stage with Zack Stevens and 16 years since performing with Matt Leff, and I know it will feel like yesterday when we blast into our first tune. Chris Rapoza is new to the mix, but there is no doubt that the energy he brought to the studio is going to translate onstage as well. This is the next step in bringing Machines Of Grace to the masses. With our experience, the musicianship and quality songs that we carry, combined with our desire to win over every person at every show, I know we will not disappoint."


09/12/2009 12:00 PM
Binghamton Area Metalfest
Endicott, New York, USA
The Country Pines
1660 Union Center Highway
Endicott, New York
THE RODS (Headliner) - CAGE (Co-Headliner) - MACHINES OF GRACE (Special Guests)
- SINNER ( Judas Priest tribute band) - ELEVATOR DEATH SQUAD - BEYOND FALLEN -

09/13/2009 08:00 PM
Club Europa
Brooklyn, New York, USA

House of Blues
Cleveland, OH

For the latest information on MACHINES OF GRACE, visit their official website at
the following location:

Machines Of Grace featuring TSO, Savatage and Metal Church members ready debut release


Machines Of Grace featuring TSO, Savatage and Metal Church members ready debut release.

Meet Machines of Grace. They are the latest among the gifted hard rock/heavy metal bands born from Boston’s thriving music scene. As with their Beantown bred forefathers, (Aerosmith, Extreme, Godsmack, Dropkick Murphys) Zak Stevens (lead vocals), Jeff Plate (drums), Matt Leff (guitar) and Chris Rapoza (bass) have concocted their own proprietar y formula for whiplash on a disc. 
Top shelf status comes from the experience of successfully headlining major tours and support from a monumental fan base. Drummer Jeff (Trans Siberian Orchestra, Savatage, Metal Church) Plate and lead singer Zak (Circle II Circle, Savatage) Stevens have the resume to help catapult Machines of Grace into the monsters of rock realm. The divine mix of such magnanimous talent can convert even the most stubborn music critic. Why? The method to their madness is embedded in the music… “It’s just a pure, solid melodic rock sound,” offers Stevens. “It has infectious grooves and its own brand of outright power. To me, it’s got great songwriting with a hard rock edge and strong commercial appeal.” 
The rise of the ‘Machine’ had to start somewhere…
Leff and Stevens have a lengthy history, spanning back to their days as protégés at GIT/VIT respectively. Their first band, Wickedwitch, also introduced the talents of drummer Jeff Plate, who clinched the line-up and formed the backbone of today’s brainchild: Machines of Grace.
During a considerable hiatus after the demise of the Wickedwitch project, Zak Stevens had gone on to front Savatage (and more recently, Circle II Circle), and later recruited Jeff Plate, who performs regularly with the Trans Siberian Orchestra and Metal Church. Meanwhile, Matt Leff had formed Trigger Effect, and with bassist Chris Rapoza, had toured as an opening act for Iron Maiden, Queensryche and Rob Halford.
Time had clearly hit the afterburners. Call it chemistry, fate or pure coincidence. A Wickedwitch fan suggested that the founding members revise, rethink, record and release the original material, and voila - Machines of Grace was conceived. 
This band accords a shot of rock and roll that infuses several music genres with an innovative twist of smoldering vocals and bludgeoning guitar riffs. Blend that with an explosive rhythm section and you’ve got an exceptionally powerful elixir. “I’d say we’re a mix of melodic metal, hard rock, modern rock and acoustic rock,” explains guitarist Matt Leff. “The current rock climate is calling for modern production, strong vocal melodies and memorable songs from guys that can really play.  I think we fit that description.”  Bassist Chris Rapoza agrees: “The CD has an amazing vibe that just flows really well and makes you want to listen to it all the way through. To me, song writing and recording with that same quality always makes for the best type of album.”
Jeff Plate tops off the sentiment: “The music is metal, but not thrash. Rock, but not pop. We could be compared to a number of different bands, and each song will give you a different impression, but in the end the sound is distinctly Machines of Grace.”
That sound is likewise attributed to the talents of veteran=2 0mixologist Paul David Hager. Credited with engineering, mixing and producing studio work by acts such as The Goo Goo Dolls, Avril Lavigne, Pink and Tracy Bonham, Hager brings to the table a record destined for the spotlight, and plenty of industry accolades. 
Live, this band brings new meaning to the term full throttle. The killer studio version of the music not withstanding, Machines of Grace takes a live performance experience to a whole new level. Fans will really enjoy the dueling guitar and vocal arrangements, while the second-to-none rhythm section welds them together perfectly. Zak promises, “You’ll hear the emphasis on the album, the way the mix very closely depicts how this band actually sounds when we plug in.” How many bands these days can do that?
Look for the debut, self-tilted Machines of Grace CD this summer. 

For further information:

latest news

Jeff is currently on tour with the Trans-Siberian Orchestra (East) till January 2009. Tour dates can be found on our tour page on

Jeff Plate's second release with the band Metal Church, titled "This Present Wasteland," was released on September 23, 2008. For more information on the release check out Metal Church on

latest release
metal church - this present wasteland (2008)