Severely bruised group accepting deficiency; subsequently dismal (5,3,4)
I believe the answer is:
black and blue
'severely bruised' is the definition.
'black-and-blue' can be an answer for 'bruised' (I've seen this in another clue). I am not certain of the 'severely' bit.
'group accepting deficiency subsequently dismal' is the wordplay.
'group' becomes 'band' (band can mean a group of people).
'accepting' indicates putting letters inside (inserted letters are accepted).
'deficiency' becomes 'lack' (synonyms).
'subsequently dismal' becomes 'blue' (I've seen this before. I am not sure about the 'subsequently' bit.).
'band' placed around 'lack' is 'blackand'.
Can you help me to learn more?
(Other definitions for black and blue that I've seen before include "Badly bruised" , "Twice shaded" , "looking thoroughly beaten?" , "apparently beaten" , "Discoloured, as from a bruise" .)