When I say simple, I mean that this is going to seem pointless to some, but I promise that it is one thing that separates a decent mix from a great mix. Want to know what it is?
Told you it was simple! By mix, I mean actively mix. Don’t set and forget. Don’t even mix on autopilot. Mix with purpose.
I often catch myself in a rehearsal just doing similar things and listening passively but not focusing in on the specifics. I have about 5 to 10 minute increments of intense focus, and then 30-45 of autopilot. I personally could mix a lot better if those numbers were flipped. I bet you could too.
Make the bass and kick drum sit beautifully in the low end. Get that electric part separate from the vocal while still adding energy. Push and pull the FX to create depth in the mix. There is always something that we can do to improve our mixes, so actively search for that. Don’t let yourself be complacent.
If you have been given the privilege of mixing, give nothing less than your best.