vox barbara is a dark ambient/noise project which began in 1996. The project has always consisted primarily of Frank Smith (sound manipulation and processing and percussion). The overarching "rule" for vox barbara music is that only original "found sounds"--both natural and mechanically produced--be used as sound sources, and that no synthesizers or sequencing be used. Various other people have contributed to vox barbara pieces over time, most notably Marchette DuBois (percussion, voice) on the 2001 album "(de)Constructed Ghosts".

The first vox barbara album, released on cassette tape in 1996, was "The Five Senses." This album was remixed and remastered and re-released on CD in 1999. The second album was released in 2001, "(de)Constructed Ghosts." All vox barbara albums have been released on Little Man Records. Recording has been done at the Purple Room in Somerville, MA, and at Katzhimmel, Seattle, WA. Sound collection was done at a variety of locations in the US, Cambodia and Thailand.

vox barbara has appeared on a number of noise/industrial/dark ambient compilation albums. One such contribution, to the album Krach Test, can be heard below. For more information on the two vox barbara albums--including complete audio, artwork, supplementary material--follow the appropriate links, also below (as are links to interview with and reviews of vox barbara in various online zines). The most recent vox barbara release, on Objective/Subjective records, is part of a series inspired by the graphic novel Watchmen, entitled "Oh, How the Ghost of You Clings." You can listen to this roughly 20 minute mini-CD here.

vox barbara is "the barbaric voice;" the term "refers to a barbarous word or phrase. It is particularly used for a supposedly neo-Latin term that is formed from elements that are neither Latin nor Greek, and thus is really part of no language at all. Voces barbarae are probably most common in botanical and zoological names..." In other words, a word created from elements in the known world, but not truly of that world in a "proper" way.

  • The Five Senses
  • (de)Constructed Ghosts

  • Tour of the Underground Religions (from the Krach Test compilation, 2001) - 4:48
  • See the Krach Test CD artwork and credits

    Interviews with and Reviews of vox barbara (open in a separate browser window):

  • Interview in Chain D.L.K.
  • Interview in Re:mote Induction:

  • Review in AmbiEntrance (scroll down page)
  • Review in Re:mote Induction:
  • Review in Last Sigh
  • Review (in Spanish) in Laylah (scroll down page)