Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 6538/Math (29-09-07)

Posted by neildubya on October 9th, 2007


Apologies for the delay in posting this – I solved the puzzle but then didn’t get a chance to blog it. This is the first Saturday crossword from Math, and it has a Britpop-type theme to it, but you don’t need to know anything about contemporary music in order to solve it. I’ve asterisked all the answers that contained bands that I’d heard of although it’s possible I missed a couple.  All in all, a very enjoyable puzzle and I’m impressed that Math managed to squeeze so many thematic answers into the grid.

1* C in ARTIC – I got this immediately, followed swiftly by 5A but I was halfway through the puzzle before I connected the two. ARTIC is the short form of articulated lorry. [A thematic answer with 5A]
5* YE< in MONKS – “Capuchins” with a capital C are the Franciscan order of monks. Weren’t they the ones who were supposed to have invented the cappuccino?
10* SUED,E
11* O,AS IS – does anyone else think that the best song they’ve ever done is a B-side called “Acquiesce”?
12 (STAY C CALM)* – nice anagram, although I wonder if a better anagram indicator could have been chosen? “Getting in a tizzy” seems a bit cumbersome to me.
14* K,A,IS,ER  – [a thematic answer with 16A]
16* CH,IE,F[aith]S
20* GO,S,SIP – one of the bands in the puzzle that I’d heard of but never heard anything by. I think their lead singer is something of an contemporary icon. Or something.
30 HER<,ASH – I like Ash, and “Girl from Mars” is still one of my favourite songs but are they famous enough to warrant the definition “band from Northern Ireland”? Then again, if you’ve worked out HER (reversed) and you have “new mix” as the definition, the answer won’t be too long in coming.
2 ER<,IN,STATE – once I’d worked out REIN- I put in REINSTALL without really thinking about the rest of the clue.
3 TALES – move the S from STALE to the end of the word.
5 M,IM,CITE< – “Mimesis” is imitative representation in art or literature.
7* ENEMY – sounds like “NME”. Once I’d got this, I was half-expecting PUBLIC to appear somewhere in the grid.
8 STE,AMY – unless I’m missing something, “Little Steven” for STE seems a bit vague.
9* N in SOW – [a thematic answer with 21D]
17* (THIS FALSE)* – FAITHLESS. Excellent clue and a very neat anagram.
19* EDITORS – not completely sure about this one. The full clue is “Newsmen write up nonsense inside”. “Nonsense” might be ROT but that leaves SIDE (or EDIS) and I can’t see how that works with the rest of the clue.
21* PA,R in TO,L
22* BLU[-she]R
24* E in JAMS
27* (IRA)* – AIR. An indirect anagram is technically a bit naughty but if it’s a three-letter word with a straightforward definition, I guess it’s excusable.

6 Responses to “Independent 6538/Math (29-09-07)”

  1. Jon88 says:

    19d “write up nonsense inside” EDI(TOR)S reversed
    That “inside” = in SIDE device is nasty!

  2. neildubya says:

    D’oh! Should have spotted that!

  3. Testy says:

    There were a few non-Ximenean twists I wasn’t keen on such as the indirect anagram, “in side” and Radiohead (for “r”) and I agree that Little Steven for STE seems a bit loose but I guess the “Temptations” of getting a few extra musical references were too much for Math.

    Even though I got TALES quite quickly it took me far too long to fathom out why.

    I got 1A straight away too and suspect I might have seen something very like it before.

    I think that The CRIBS and The SHINS might be a couple of other bands too.

    Also the surfaces of a few of the clues were quite musical, it’s a shame it wasn’t quite the 100% that Virgilius managed in his v impressive Rugby World Cup crossword. Not in the same league (or should that be union).

  4. eimi says:

    When it comes to thematics Virgilius is in a league of his own.

  5. nmsindy says:

    Top of the table!

  6. Ali says:

    As a long-standing Indie kid, I enjoyed this one a lot and yet completely missed a lot of the bands at the time. How I didn’t spot Arctic Monkeys and Kaiser Chiefs I don’t know. The Cribs and The Shins are indeed two others to add to the list.

    And, yep, Acquiesce is classic, arms-around-your-drunken-mates Oasis. Shame they haven’t made a decent record since!


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