Muller Music Meta, July

puzzle — 8:39 (Matt) 
meta — 15 minutes  


Colour My World (open)

After last month’s failure, time for me to start a new MMMM streak! Let’s see what we’ve got: Pete asks us to find a well-known rock band, and our theme entries appear to be:

17-A [Possible cause of sleep deprivation] = CRYING BABY. Wah!

25-A [2015 documentary about record-setting parachute jumper Nick Piantanida] = ANGRY SKY. Unfamiliar to me but interesting letters and intuitive.

37-A [Fabric frequently found on lead singers] = DISTRESSED DENIM. If it were just called “stressed denim” then both words would reverse to other words.

48-A [Way past the surface] = DOWN DEEP.

60-A [Argillite variety (or a British reggae band)] = BLACK SLATE.

First thing I noticed is that the first words seem to have some kind of emotion commonality: CRYING could mean “sad,” ANGRY is “mad,” distressed is…”Bad?” Not really. And then the -ad idea completely falls apart with DOWN (also “sad?”) and BLACK (?). OK, so that’s not it.

How about the title, “Colour My World”? That’s the great Chicago songlet, so Pete’s probably not implying anything with the British spelling of “color.”

Aha, though — there it is. BABY, SKY, DENIM, DEEP, and SLATE are all shades of blue. So this has to be part of it, of course. What are some bands with “blue” in their name? Blues Traveler? Doesn’t make much sense with the themers. Same with Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, Blue Oyster Cult? Hmm, not much there.

Then I realized the first part of each theme entry had to be key as well, since I think there were more familiar options besides ANGRY SKY for “sky” and BLACK SLATE for “slate.” So that emotionality (?) commonality has to come into play…and there it is: the contest answer is THE MOODY BLUES, since the first word of each theme entry suggests a kind of mood, and the second a kind of blue.

Pretty fun, and nice to have an easier one after last month’s spirit-crusher (though not too easy — just 150 solvers have it right on Sunday afternoon). 4.15 stars.

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8 Responses to Muller Music Meta, July

  1. Pete Muller says:

    Thanks Matt

    157 correct this month.
    Congrats on restarting your streak!

    Pete (still stuck on the Friday WSJ meta)

  2. janie says:

    >…so Pete’s probably not implying anything with the British spelling of “color.”

    and it was that british spelling that confirmed things for me, as the moody blues are an english rock band. the “moody” part was evident to me when i looked at the themers as a set; it took reading your post to see the “blues,” however… nice touch! i hadn’t been able to solve the meta for several months, so — even if it’s the last time i do so this year — it was nice to be able to notch this one up.


    • Pete Muller says:

      yup – the spelling was an intentional hint towards British bands…

    • Phoebe says:

      Ha! Same for me – went for British, got the “moods” and figured the colour in the title was also a tip for blue. Totally missed the second theme words. Makes the puzzle one star better!

  3. Rammy M says:

    That makes more sense now.
    I did find the answer fairly quickly (with some web searching), but I wasn’t sure because I only understood:
    1) “colour” needed, (maybe)
    2) the list of depressed emotions
    3) British group needed ? (probably)
    sad = blue

    hey, emotional sadness = mood-y blue ? But where’s the confirmation, the aha?
    I finally submitted it because my brain was stuck on the one answer I could see.
    Fortunately …

  4. Pickleman says:

    I overthought the difficulty of this one after last months:
    My Answer was Rainbow
    Orange (Rinds)
    Yellow (Taxi)
    Green (Cash)
    Blue (Sky)
    Indigo (Denim)
    Violet (Deep) – as in Purple – I know that was a stretch, but I saw BLACK(more) and thought it was somehow related with Ritchie’s band. Also WHITEsnake was another spin-off of the band

  5. Math Teacher Dave says:

    I submitted Blues Traveler, and while I think “Moody Blues” is a more satisfying answer, I think Blues Traveler is a valid alternative answer. Here’s why:

    All of the first words are synonyms for the negative emotions you would hear when you listen to the blues (“blue” fitting with the “Colour My World” title).

    The clue for 61 has three stars (indicating that it is extremely important), and the answer is “LAP” (the kind you sit on); the alternate definition for “lap” is “to pass while running,” also known as “Run Around” (i.e. Blues Traveler’s biggest hit song).

    Since Blues Traveler fits with the title, the theme answers, and the triple-asterisk-ed clue, I hope you’ll consider giving those of us who submitted Blues Traveler the benefit of the doubt on this one.

    • Matt says:

      The triple-asterisk indicates that the answer is part of the mega-meta. Even without that, the LAP = “traveling” connection is much too tenuous IMO.

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