When we last checked in with Royal Mill back in January, the self-described “existential indie rock” outfit was chasing its self-titled 2023 debut EP with “Falls Apart,” a exceptional single that earned the distinction of being on our Winter Playlist and, if we’re being completely honest, is still in our head as we type this. Well, with spring finally here, Royal Mill is back with another standalone single about…winter.

Actually, in spite of its name, “Winter In The South” isn’t about a particular season as much as it pertains to a specific feeling. Singer Matty Timmons tells Milwaukee Record he used to live in North Carolina, where he grew to love the slower pace of life and the break from the heat brought on by the region’s mild winters. When he relocated to the Midwest, he felt a similar sense of ease (despite the drastic shift in temperature) when he was first getting to know the woman who’s now his wife.

“It reminded me of some of the best days I had in North Carolina. All of a sudden I was just so grateful to have her and I knew I wanted to share life—the good, bad and everything between—with her,” Timmons says. “So this song is a sort of love letter, and the chorus is trying to say essentially that when life feels all bitter and cold, she makes it feel like winter in the south again.”

Much like “Falls Apart” and the EP that preceded it, “Winter In The South” offers lyrical vulnerability and emotive melodies that are layered atop an altogether indie-leaning sound that, fitting to the song’s theme, builds from a cold outset to a warm and vibrant crescendo over a span of three minutes. Timmons says the song (which will not be part of any larger releases) marks “a sort of conclusion to this transitional moment” he feels the project is in, and that he’s excited to show listeners the direction the band is taking with its forthcoming EP. As we anxiously await what’s next from Royal Mill, we encourage you to throw on a sweatshirt or a light jacket and spend three minutes experiencing “Winter In The South.”

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Co-Founder and Editor

Before co-founding Milwaukee Record, Tyler Maas wrote for virtually every Milwaukee publication (except Wassup! Magazine). He lives in Bay View and enjoys both stuff and things.