Yes, it was the worst gig I've ever been to.
Yes, I do actually like the recorded album whatever the personalities of those who wrote it.
If anyone was there, I'd advise them to also complain about how badly organised it was, and maybe throw some comments in about the crapness of the Test Icicles performance too, if you're feel like it.
Here's a template to get you started:
"Dear Sir / Madam,
Last night, I attended the Test Icicles gig at ULU. The support band for the night, were one of my favourite groups, namely "Help She Can't Swim".
As you can see from the confirmation below (and also the printed ticket itself and any online references to the gig on Seetickets), you advertised the gig as being for over 14's. As a 23 year old, I'd assumed that this condition wouldn't affect me or my night.
The doors were set to open at 19:00, but by 19:30, there were still streams of hundreds of people queueing, with little sign of anyone actually getting into the venue. At this point we reluctantly joined the queue.
After about 15 minutes of queueing, we had heard from others in the queue that the reason the progress was so slow was because the venue was imposing an over 16's restriction on entrance to the venue. As far as I'm aware, the delay had initially occurred when some 15 year olds were refused entry despite the fact that their ticket explicitly stated that they would be granted entry. After much furor, the upshot seemed to be that every person entering the venue was to have to declare identification for entry.
At this point, you may still be wondering how this affects me. I was in that queue for over an hour and a half in freezing point temperatures, for the luxury to miss Help She Can't Swim and the other support act and only make it inside in time to see the Test Icicles themselves. Even when we got in the venue, we were shocked to see that it was hardly near its capacity since most people were still outside, not watching the bands they had paid to see.
Basically, I paid for your error.
After enquiring with the organisers at the venue about why the restriction was so vigorously upheld considering there's no relevant legal boundary for people over 16 (unless I missed out on all the smoking and sex in the adjacent bar), so why did this happen in the first place? Your advertisement of the gig was inaccurate and did not apply to what was actually entitled with the ticket.
The problem was between yourselves and the venue, yet it was those who paid the money to allow the event to happen who will eventually end up dissatisfied. I have been to gigs at ULU before, and never has anything like this farce happened before.
The final salt in the wound though, were the band themselves. The sound levels were so badly out that you could barely make anything out above one of the guitars that was screeching at a painful level. Before you make any quick and witty comments based on that last sentence, I'd like to point out that I know how it's supposed to sound as I have listened to their recording many times, and I was standing just below the mixing desk, so technically the best sound I could get. The band stayed on for little over 40 minutes, and although their short, poor performance was not your responsibility, it did nothing but worsen my feeling about the night itself.
I look forward to your reply."