yes yes yes to everything you said. I remember seeing all those bands all the time back in the day, Door Ft Worth and the old Door Dallas. The guys from (in)theory even came out to see my crappy 8th grade band once, really nice guys. I think what we've really lost is the brotherhood of it all. This might be true in scenes nationwide, but everything become more about myspace plays and facebook fans and presale tickets than about all the bands actually being friends and wanting to play with each other. I remember once when I saw Terminal, (in)theory, and Knockout Kings all at one show. So great. I don't think Ziemer is completely to blame, but he has definitely monopolized things. I worked for a different production company once, but Ziemer was so hard to compete with.
I think things are also so disjointed. For a while you could only be one of two things, super heavy hardcore or super acoustic folk. Anything else had no place, which is partially how all of my projects and my friend's projects never found a fanbase. Now there's the 3rd option of being an electro artist, blehhhhhh
I'm going to check out the more current bands you listed, though, I haven't even heard of them, I've been staying so out of the loop of our scene.
The current ones I listened definitely fall into the hardcore/metal category, but they're good at what they do and they represent the former brotherhood that has been missing for so long. I just wish there were a few more good ones that could kind of help jump start the local scene again....before the butt-rock wins...haha