Another packed indie bill tonight at the DIY paradise known as 1919 Hemphill in Fort Worth. And unlike some previous outings, the headliner is actually the best band of the bill.
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Hailing out of Buffalo, Lemuria has been around since 2004, but the trio of Sheena Ozzella (guitar, vocals), Alexander Kerns (drums) and Jason Draper (bass) is just now getting the press they so richly deserve. Lemuria's 2008 effort, Get Better, was the proper showcase for band's hip mixing of influences as diverse as Jawbreaker and Husker Du. On previous EPs, Ozzella's shrieking was as distracting as it was powerful, but newer cuts, such as "Pants" and "Yesterday's Lunch" show the singer reeling in the angst without diluting the band's assault one iota.
O'Pioneers, meanwhile, is a youthful quartet out of Spring, Texas, that will be showcasing its fine 2009 effort Neon Creeps. While not as dynamic as Lemuria, O'Pioneers has a dry sense of humor uncommon to a lot of punk bands. Case in point: Check out one of the band's best numbers, "Saved by the Bell was a Super Good Show."
Lastly, Michigan's Empire! Empire! is another feisty band on this crowded bill. Led by Keith Latinen, Empire! Empire!'s sound is a bit on the emo side, but the band certainly adds some variety to tonight's extravaganza.