The Cure's Robert Smith

Robert Smith, iconic frontman of The Cure, will make a rare solo appearance on the soundtrack to Tim Burton’s live-action “Alice in Wonderland” later this year, contributing a cover of “Very Good Advice” from Disney’s animated version of the Lewis Carroll classic.

The soundtrack, due out March 2, also includes Disney re-imaginings and other themed tunes by the likes of Franz Ferdinand, Wolfmother, Avril Lavigne and Owl City, plus a new collaboration between blink-182’s Mark Hoppus and Fall Out Boy’s Pete Wentz. (See full tracklist below, plus watch the original version of “Very Good Advice.”)

For Smith, the soundtrack appears to be only the third time he’s issued music under his own name rather than as the Cure. In 2001, Smith posted his solo cover of Wendy Waldman’s “Pirate Ships” — originally recorded for Elektra Records’ Rubáiyát compilation during the Disintegration sessions — as an MP3 download on TheCure.com (that track is now slated to appear on the forthcoming 3CD reissue of Disintegration).

And in 2004 — as an astute commenter pointed out on Chain of Flowers — Smith recorded a new, primarily electronic solo version of “Pictures of You” that was remixed for the soundtrack to the Australian film “One Perfect Day.”

As for Burton, recruiting the similarly coiffed Smith for soundtrack work has been a decades-long endeavor. Roger O’Donnell, who served as the Cure’s keyboardist for two different stints between 1987 and 2005, recently recalled the director’s first approach during the 1988-’89 recording sessions for Disintegration.

In his recently posted essay recounting those sessions, O’Donnell writes:

“Another thing I remember but I don’t know how widely known this is was that Tim Burton had asked Robert for the Cure to do the soundtrack to ‘Edward Scissorhands’ and the script was lying around the studio. I don’t know why we didn’t or what happened, I don’t think we knew who he was at the time.”

Now that Smith has contributed music to a Burton film, it’s unclear whether there’s any significance at all to the fact that it’s credited as Robert Smith rather than the Cure. It could just be a record company conflict, although it’s believed that Universal Music dropped the Cure last summer. Yet with so much archival material on tap this year — Disintegration, “The Cure in Orange,” Mixed Up 2 — it’s good to see new music on the horizon, even if it’s just a Disney cover tune.

Now how about that so-called “Dark Album”?

See full ‘Alice’ tracklist and the original ‘Very Good Advice’ after the jump…

Tracklist: Tim Burton’s “Alice in Wonderland” soundtrack

1. “Alice (Underground)” performed by Avril Lavigne
2. “The Poison” performed by The All-American Rejects
3. “The Technicolor Phase” performed by Owl City
4. “Her Name Is Alice” performed by Shinedown
5. “Painting Flowers” performed by All Time Low
6. “Where’s My Angel” performed by Metro Station
7. “Strange” performed by Tokio Hotel and Kerli
8. “Follow Me Down” performed by 3OH!3 featuring Neon Hitch
9. “Very Good Advice” performed by Robert Smith
10. “In Transit” performed by Mark Hoppus with Pete Wentz
11. “Welcome to Mystery” performed by Plain White T’s
12. “Tea Party” performed by Kerli
13. “The Lobster Quadrille” performed by Franz Ferdinand
14. “Running Out of Time” performed by Motion City Soundtrack
15. “Fell Down a Hole” performed by Wolfmother
16. “White Rabbit” performed by Grace Potter and the Nocturnals

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