We spend a lot of time on the internet, whether it’s consuming all that it has to offer on a daily basis or adding to the conversation. It takes a lot of courage to put yourself out there, especially when you’re sharing your talent with the world. It can go pretty badly. Or a producer like James Hinton aka The Range finds you and puts you on.

I found each person by using a small set of search terms on YouTube. Each song is inextricably linked to the point in time that I came across each video. I endeavored to tie the songs of Potential together by telling my own story alongside the stories of the people I sampled…I am very conscious that these people who I have sampled elevate what I do, just as much as my record brings their work somewhere else.

The Range’s new album is called Potential and it’s full of unknown singers and rappers who have tons of it. Hinton is consumed with how these people decided to put themselves out there, what they thought of as they uploaded their covers or even original work. Hinton took their voices and incorporated them into his production. It’s tempting to accuse the Brooklyn-based Hinton of mix and match production, just grabbing anything from the internet to make himself hip. The difference is that he gives a shit about who these people are, acknowledging that they lend humanity to his work. For him, it goes beyond simple sampling and we can respect that.

All of these people are sitting in their bedrooms, spilling out their guts, and I’m all the way over here, in my room, listening. I knew the music I wanted to make was like the music I loved – different, disparate but defined – and here were all of these collaborators, in cities I had never even visited.

Hinton doesn’t have a very ~cool~ inception story as far as musicians go either. He’s a geek who studied physics at Brown and picked up drums at an early age. A fan of Squarepusher and Baltimore club music, he became obsessed with order and rhythm. Lead single “Florida” features vocals by Kai, a teenage singer from NYC. It’s a beautiful track with soaring melodies that hits you with synths all of a sudden. It’s a promising glimpse at Potential, which includes artists from as far as London (OphQI, Superior Thought) and Kingston, Jamaica (Naturaliss).  It will be The Range’s first album with Domino Records (he released Nonfiction in 2013).

Potential is out March 25th via Domino Records.

On The Rise is our spotlight series on new and emerging artists. We last featured Foxtrott. Stay tuned for next week’s On The Rise artist!