I do sound for a very popular band. It's a old/new school pop, R&B, dance cover band. I've been mixing them for about a year and a half.
The band has four singers. They all trade singing lead and they all do backing backing vocals. The band's vocals used to pretty much "mix themselves". I would hardly ever have to ride a fader up. The band's dynamics and control were excellent.
Well, now - I don't know what happened! Now I have to ride whoever is singing the lead's fader. My gain structure is right. During soundcheck, I would have each singer sing at their actual "performance volume" and then I adjust the gain 'till it averages around "0"/"U"...
The only change is that the bass player has switched to using a headset mic. I don't know the model of his Sennheiser mic, but it is VERY sensitive. He has the sensitivity set on the lowest setting and I have his channels gain all the way down. We barely get away with this! When the band plays on a system that has been provided, I later hear about how the engineer had to put up a wired mic. The mic sounds good, but ever since he's been using it I've always had to ride his fader up during his leads...
The band's are really beginning to sound just average. Oh, the main singer in the band dropped his mic (a wireless Beta 58 with an older looking receiver) some time ago. I have to really "gain it up" and it sounds a bit dull compaired to his Wife's mic (the same model).
I know this is something the band has to work on but is there anything I can do in the short term to help tighten or smooth out the vocals? I just got a Presonus ACP88 last week to replace the Behringer Multicoms. I've pretty much only compressed punk and death metal vocals (mostly so they don't destroy my EON15 G2's). So my compressor usage/experience is minimal.
Thanks for the help!