It's a rare pop band that writes lyrics prophesying its future. As "Lisztomania" predicts, Phoenix has progressed from a mess to the masses. Before the French pop band's swanky days of sold-out shows and Cadillac commercials, frontman Thomas Mars (no, that's not his real name) hatched Phoenix in the mid-'90s by playing Hank Williams and Prince covers on the French bar circuit. (No wonder the fame jackpot proved elusive.) The band had brief associations with Daft Punk and Air before striking out on its own with 2000's United. Nine years and three releases later: the goldmine Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix and an eruption to star status. Phoenix's cotton-candy-colored tunes have continued to earn hearty accolades in 2010: a headlining spot at Lollapalooza, a Grammy for Best Alternative Music Album, and (last but not least) an interview with Snooki from Jersey Shore. Stateside success at its finest.