Hobart Paving is a deceptive song. It sounds simple on the first listen; Sarah Cracknell singing over what seems like a sparse backing track, the lyrics regretful and contemplative. But there's more going on. The backing tracks starts off with just a piano, with new instruments gradually coming in, building the backing up layer by layer until, at the end, the song is accompanied by a pocket electronic orchestra of drums, strings, and horns. Is Sarah talking about Elvis Presley's tears, or Elvis Costello's? There's a big difference between the two. It feels like the end of a 1960s kitchen-sink drama film, where the young and successful star returns to her humble beginnings, but finds that she's no longer welcome. She leaves, never to return home again.
Who Do You Think You Are?, the other side of this double-A single, is one of those times where the band were almost too clever for their own good. It's a cover of a song by Candlewick Green, winners of several Opportunity Knocks programmes (Opportunity Knocks was a long-running (1956-78) British TV talent show; this song comes from the 1970s). This could have just been an ironic exercise of kitsch, but the band drag the track into the 1990s, stopping off in the 1980s to borrow some acid house, mixing together cool and uncool parts of British culture to create something new, exciting, and danceable.