The strumming of a guitar and the hum of distant violins escalates into a joyous chorus as the musician Mills reflects on his hopes for love. Singing about the feeling of being captivated by one person on his new track “All We Have,” Mills speaks to the human experience, saying “All we have is time/ It’s amazing what I’m learning when I leave the past behind.”
The Laurel Canyon-based artist released his third project, Final Thoughts, on Nov. 10. It marks the end of an era for Mills, whose album Clashing Thoughts came out in 2019 and EP Train of Thoughts was released in April of 2021.
“This project feels incredibly special to me. It’s the end of a journey I thought up 3 years ago when I was back in Kentucky,” Mills said in an Instagram post.
Mills released “All We Have” as a single, and the song serves as part love song and part ode to the future. Mills talks about his significant other who reassures him and helps him let go of his fears about the past and future. With swelling drums, guitars, and synths, the chorus lets Mills’ optimistic and carefree side shine through. One theme that unites Mills’ three EPs is his tendency toward introspection. Because the majority of his songs are based around an acoustic guitar, Mills easily draws his audience close to show his thoughtful side.
In “Born N’ Raised,” Mills reflects on the fleeting nature of beautiful moments in life as he sings about his childhood. With a simple acoustic guitar, the Kentucky native sings about how, even as a kid, he realized that he would leave behind his home because “we know the world is more than where we’re born and raised.”
Overall, this meditation on youth creates a sad and nostalgic feeling. But, just as he does throughout the rest of Final Thoughts, Mills turns his eye to the future as he tries to live without regrets. Mills tells his listeners to “find that silver lining / Don’t let life confuse you, leave you worrying all the time.”
In “White Horses,” Mills compares his Kentucky heritage with the artificiality of the people he’s met in Los Angeles. In the second verse, he sings, “I guess this one isn’t my kinda crowd / Plastic people in a doll’s house.” Mills sings his reflective lyrics with his smooth and soothing voice against the backdrop of tender guitar strumming.
In “White Horses” and throughout the Final Thoughts, Mills looks at his past, present, and future—highlighting both the exploration of time and a sense of hope.
Photo Courtesy of RCA Records