Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 6575 by Morph

Posted by nmsindy on November 12th, 2007


This puzzle typified the new direction the Indy puzzle is taking since Eimi became crossword editor. Themed, with a Nina (in case anyone wants to look again at the grid, I’ll give this at the end of the blog after the clue explanations). I suspected as much when I saw the unusual grid and when one of the first clues I solved was the obscure 15 across UNSENSE from a friendly anagram.

Though I discovered the theme in less than 20 mins on solving 31 across, it took a long time to solve the puzzle. It also drove a coach-and-four through the ‘drawing-room’ conventions of DFM’s book.

Solving time: 64 mins.

* = anagram < = reversed


6 UP TOWN Very good, this. ‘trail’ means ‘follow’ up = at university non-academic types = town as in ‘town and gown’ if I’ve understood it.

10 (Ann)OUNCE

11 A(X) E X (times as in multiplication tables – remember them?) in A & E. Liked this a lot, with a superb surface reading.

12 IFFY Every other letter in Six Fifty

14 H(er)O T MEAL God = hero less (save) ER = Queen Very good, based on the theme group’s song in the surface reading. (metal)*

16 SET My biggest doubt. “Jam should do live show” See that jam would set, but not sure about the live show – the other possibility is SIT.

17 NU DI(t)TY “New” Another good music surface.

19 PISTIL i for o in pistol

21 VD U

23 (t)EMERIT(y) I I = Institute

25 PIST OL S 13 is SEXLESSLY so SEX PISTOLS less SEX ol’ = old, I think.

27 CAR B Short for carbohydrate – great clue

28 I DO Nothing to do with the Alf Garnett late 60s sitcom, later filmed, but words of a wedding service.

29 NADAL Hidden court = tennis court

30 B UR EAU Beau Bridges (actor) Centre of chURch

31 Johnny R (OTT) EN(t) Torn = Rent


1 NONE LEFT (fennel to)* for the anagram spare in the sense go spare = rage

2 END-ALLS (and sell)* Cunningly hidden anagram I did not see for quite a while

3 VOTE OUT A perhaps not so cryptic definition that had me chasing false trails for quite a while till light dawned.

5 REEF KNOT (free)* a ‘knot’ is a bird

7 PIN (O) T Slight niggle here with the comma after old. Was looking for a glass in the form wine + O for quite a while

9 MO (B-HANDE)D (band he)* This was a key word for the puzzle as the only word in the first column of the grid – it’s what finally revealed the full puzzle to me. Again a misleading musical surface. The word (new to me and verified after) means a great number (adj).

13 S (EXLESS) LY Ex-less = not enjoying former partner

18 DA E DAL US lad<

21 Sid V ICI OUS ici = here in French vous = you in French (except for intimates when it’s tu) hence ‘politely’

22 UP Y OURS (Sour)* after first letters if I’ve read it right – the wording seems a little loose.

24 INBRED “In bread” Setter well entitled to the “!”

Nina: Read the across rows 1, 3 and 5. Topical, as I believe the group is reforming 30 years after they started.

6 Responses to “Independent 6575 by Morph”

  1. Jos says:

    Re 16A I think, a band perform a set, which is what jam should do.

  2. Colin Blackburn says:

    Well, they’ve reformed several times whenever they’ve needed the money. A 30th anniversary is as good a reason as any to cash in.

    22dn is U PY (SOUR)* Pretty Vacant giving PY and like 14ac managing to use one of the band’s song title as a cryptic element. Cook was in the band so I think the wording here is excellent.

  3. Richard Heald says:

    A good, fun puzzle which wasn’t afraid to break the rules – appropriately enough, under the circumstances! Not one to please the pop-culturephobes, but I have no complaints. It’s just a shame no room could be found for Steve Jones or the much-maligned Glen Matlock.

  4. jetdoc says:

    I too enjoyed this one a lot — great theme to cheer a cold Monday. 22D is really impressive, and I like 21D too, given that Sid V wasn’t known for speaking politely to anyone.

  5. DFM says:

    Such a nice young man when he submitted his puzzle to The Church Times …

  6. Michod says:

    Sorry Don! Thanks for all the feedback – I did try to get some other band members in, but the top half of the puzzle was somewhat constrained by the top three rows of unches.

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