A Puzzle by 8ball
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The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.
As usual, the setter will be delighted to receive feedback from you, the solvers. I do ask that you remember that for most setters this is a new experience, so please only offer constructive criticism.
Serious email problems are currently preventing me from sending out courtesy emails to setters of NTSPP and Rookie puzzles. BD
Welcome back to 8Ball with a classically themed crossword. 8 musical instruments were hidden in the solutions that may be heard in a performance by 27/15. There are a few technical errors in the clues but the majority were fine and attention had been paid to the cryptic grammar as well as the surface readings. The commentometer reads as 4.5/29 or 15.5%
1 Continuously complain about old hunting weapon (7)
HARPOON – A purse 4,2 around the abbreviation for old.
5 Eastern European regularly early for work with no reward (7)
SLAVERY – A four-letter word for a person of Eastern European origin followed by the even letters (regularly) in early.
10 Figure integral out (8)
TRIANGLE – An anagram (out) of INTEGRAL.
11 Difficult time getting aroused (6)
THORNY – The abbreviation for time followed y (getting) a five-letter word meaning aroused.
12 Red jumper wrapped by husband (6)
MAROON – A three-letter diminutive word for a kangaroo (jumper) has a three-letter word for a a husband around it (wrapped by).
13 Picnic in the park with girlfriend? Boyfriend ultimately old fashioned (8)
OUTDATED – A phrase 3,4 that might describe a picnic in a park with a girlfriend followed by the last letter (ultimately) of boyfriend. Whilst “Picnic in the park” and “Picnic” are both capable of defining “out date” (and therefore “in the park” is strictly not required), where it is still technically correct and the wording improves the surface reading, I think that this is fine.
14 Drink after student drivers get into luxury car (10)
LIMONCELLO – A four-letter word meaning after and the abbreviation for a learner twice (student drivers) inside (get into) a four-letter word for a luxury car. I don’t have an issue with students drivers.
16 Crave sex before church (4)
ITCH – A two-letter word for sex before the abbreviation for church.
18 Current chart topper Genesis found here in front of listeners (4)
OTIC – The abbreviation for current and the first letter (topper) of chart with the abbreviation for Old Testament (Genesis found here) before them (in front).
19 Had I knew criminal would at last go after Robin? (10)
HOODWINKED – An anagram (criminal) of I KNEW and the final letter (at last) of would after a four-letter word describing Robin of Sherwood Forest fame. The phrase “Had I knew” is not grammatically correct. The clue must read grammatically both in its surface reading and its grammar.
22 During time in power it’s put off temporarily (8)
INTERMIT – A two-letter word meaning during and a four-letter word meaning time in power followed by the IT from the clue.
24 Subtle change when pain is removed (6)
NUANCE – An eight-letter word for a pain without (removed) the IS. I am not keen on when as a link word. Pain is suppressed leading to subtle change would be better.
26 Going back to resurface road perhaps before crack initially becomes hole (6)
CRATER – A five-letter word meaning to resurface a road and the initial letter of crack all reversed (going back).
27/15 Crazy hot psychos to marry Newcastle’s and Everton’s fringe players (8,9)
SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA – An anagram (crazy) of HOT PSYCHOS MARRY NE (the N and E being the first letters (fringes) of Newcastle and Everton). The “to” in the clue breaks the cryptic grammar. Cryptically you can mix A with B but mixing A to B does not work.
28 Bloody Mary mixed for Russian soldiers (3,4)
RED ARMY – A three-letter word meaning bloody followed by an anagram (mixed) of MARY.
29 Candy unwrapped quickly etc. (3,2,2)
AND SO ON – The inner letters (unwrapped) of candy followed by a four-letter word meaning quickly. Having both wrapped and unwrapped as wordplay indicators is not ideal.
2 The Little Mermaid heard initially getting performance off the ground? (9)
AERIALIST – A homophone of the name given by Disney to the Little Mermaid (Arial) follows by the abbreviation for first (initially). The definition does not match the solution.
3 Scottish man put in work – retired with grand? (5)
PIANO – A three-letter word Scottish mans’ name inside (put in) a reversal (retired) of the abbreviation for a work.
4 Church musician losing stone approximately without use of chemicals (7)
ORGANIC – An eight-letter word for a church musician with the abbreviation for stone followed by the abbreviation for circa (approximately).
6 Don’t react to fool breaking childrens toy (3,2,2)
LET IT GO – A three-letter word for a fool inside a four-letter name of a children’s building toy.
7 Infringement of rules when goalkeeper backtracks after vital movement to catch ball (9)
VIOLATION – A reversal of No 1 (the number worn by the goalkeeper) reversed after an anagram (movement) of VITA around (to catch) the letter that is ball shaped. I think that the same point as that made in 13a applies. Whilst the “in rules” is not strictly required, it adds to the surface reading. The same point about “when” applies. Here, :with goalkeeper backtracking…” would work better.
8 Get ready for a spin with section of rollercoaster in Seaworld (5)
RINSE – The answer is hidden (section of) in the final three words of the clue.
9 Writing on type of bacteria I brought up creates backlash (6)
RECOIL – The single letter representing writing on a word 1-4 for a type of bacteria with the I moved up one place.
15 See 27 Across
17 Unfinished street party gradually getting louder (9)
CRESCENDO – An eight-letter word for a street without the final letter (unfinished) followed by a two-letter word for a party.
19 Same old bad smell – Grandad’s rear? Mostly rear (7)
HUMDRUM – A three-letter word for a bad smell followed by the final letter (rear) of grandad and a four-letter word for the rear without the final letter (mostly).
20 No exercise after clearing out buffet is stupid (6)
OBTUSE – The letter representing no and a three-letter meaning exercise after the outer letters (clearing out) of buffet. I don’t think that the clue quite works. You can have “no exercise” to indicate “O Use” but the wordplay required you to take No and put the exercise after the outer letters of buffet.
21 Point Grandmother into pub to give male support (7)
WINGMAN – The abbreviation for West (point) with the abbreviation for grand and a two-letter word for a mother inside a three-letter word for a pub. Some editors will not accept clues where you need to split a word such as grandmother to obtain the solution.
23 Take care of shark? (5)
NURSE – Double definition.
25 Most hasty to take clothes off for series of tests? (5)
ASHES – A seven-letter word meaning most hasty without the first and last letters (to take clothes off).
On a personal note as a blogger, comments on the clues are great however, as soon as one or more commentators provide details analysis on every clue where they have a comment, it greatly increases the time to prepare the blog as I am then reviewing the crossword and the comments (as they may or may not be valid ones) and repeating what has already been said.