Puzzletome Crossword Puzzles

SOLUTION

October 2013 Monthly Crossword
7
Grid
Explanations

The puzzle celebrated 2nd centenary of the birth of Guiseppe Verdi (7a) and in particular his operas (28a). The special (printers devilry) clues each therefore led to a Verdi opera. Accordingly, normal clues each contained a musical flavour.

SPECIAL CLUES
Holly trees providing Boston fERN AN Ilex barrier (10a)
Mark and mATT I LAid out with punches (26a)
On new roads let tarMAC BE THick layer (3d)
In hOTEL LOose standards are unacceptable (5d)
We pAID A lot for the best service (9d)
I'm anti meat rods and pro ofFAL STAFFs (16d)
Is octOBER TOo cold for holiday? (21d)

Across
  1. VERDI
  2. V (victory) + ARIA (song) + TI (note) + ON (over) => VARIATION (change)
  3. ERNANI
  4. BASE (deep = BASS, sound = homophone) + LINE (channel) => BASELINE (standard)
  5. DO + MI (notes 1 and 3) + N (note) + ANT (worker) => note five (DOMINANT)
  6. OO (holes) containing (surrounding) B (black) + E (tubE conclusion) => OBOE (it's played, &lit)
  7. YET (despite) containing (holding) FITS (seizures) all backwards => TESTIFY (sing)
  8. BOON (gift) containing (wrapping) ASS (idiot) => BASSOON (blow this)
  9. Double meaning (essence + music) => SOUL
  10. Anagram (away) siren + far => REFRAINS (sounds)
  11. S (second) + EVENT (game) + HS (has not one) => SEVENTHS (intervals)
  12. ATTILA
  13. IF + I (one) contained (is immersed) in FORTE (loud) + D (Disco to start with) => FORTIFIED (strengthened)
  14. OPERA
Down
  1. GEE (Oh My) containing (catching) A + R (right) + BOX (beat) + S (Sunday) => GEARBOXES (transmissions)
  2. I (one) + DEALIST (leads it astray) => IDEALIST (one wishes it best)
  3. MACBETH
  4. DIAS (reported=said back) + P (quiet) + OR (gold) + A => DIASPORA (movement for the people)
  5. OTELLO
  6. SHORN (cut) with S moved to last (intro at the end) => HORNS (brassy music makers)
  7. AIDA
  8. TOWNCERK (wet rock 'n' roll) containing L (around 50) => TOWN CLERK (records kept by him)
  9. FALSTAFF
  10. STAR (celebrity) + TUPS (Taking Up Prokofiev's String preludes) => STARTUPS (new concerns)
  11. ELVIS (lives discordantly) => PRESLEY (the King)
  12. OBERTO
  13. Double definition (accidental + tyre problem) => FLAT
  14. TEN (hook=NET up) + OR (OrganiseR outside) => TENOR (vocalist)