Extinction Level Event: The Final World Front

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Extinction Level Event: The Final World Front
Studio album by
ReleasedDecember 15, 1998
GenreHip hop
LabelFlipmode, Elektra
Busta Rhymes chronology
The Imperial
Extinction Level Event: The Final World Front
Busta Rhymes solo chronology
When Disaster Strikes...
Extinction Level Event: The Final World Front
Singles from E.L.E. (Extinction Level Event): The Final World Front
  1. "Tear da Roof Off"
    Released: October 21, 1998
  2. "Gimme Some More"
    Released: October 26, 1998
  3. "Party Is Goin' on Over Here"
    Released: 1998
  4. "What's It Gonna Be?!"
    Released: March 9, 1999

Extinction Level Event: The Final World Front is the third studio album by American rapper and record producer Busta Rhymes. It was released on December 15, 1998 by Flipmode and Elektra Records in North America. The album follows the apocalyptic theme explored by Rhymes' first two albums, The Coming (1996) and When Disaster Strikes (1997). Musically, the album comprises East Coast, West Coast, horrorcore, and hardcore hip hop music.

Widely praised by critics, the album earned three Grammy Award nominations: Best Rap Album, Best Rap Solo Performance and Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group at the 42nd Grammy Awards. It also spawned three Billboard chart hits, including the Janet Jackson-featuring "What's It Gonna Be?!", which became Rhymes' highest-charting single on the US Billboard Hot 100 as a lead artist, reaching number three. In early 1999, E.L.E. was certified Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for selling over one million copies.

"I'd had success with two albums, and I felt like I didn't have to prove anything to other people anymore. But I had to prove something to myself. I did things that nobody had been able to do before, such as having Janet Jackson and Ozzy Osbourne on the same album. I caught [producer] J Dilla at the best time. Nobody else got him as good as me." – Busta Rhymes[1]

Critical reception[edit]

The album received generally favorable reviews. At the 42nd Grammy Awards, the album earned three nominations, one for the album itself in the category of Best Rap Album, a Best Rap Solo Performance nomination for "Gimme Some More" and a Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group nomination for "What's It Gonna Be?!" with Janet Jackson.[2]

In August 2020, Busta Rhymes announced a sequel to the album, Extinction Level Event 2: The Wrath of God, which was released on October 30, 2020.[3][4]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Christgau's Consumer Guide(neither)[6]
Entertainment WeeklyB[7]
Rolling Stone[11]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide[12]
The Source[13]
Urban Latino[8]

Commercial performance[edit]

The album debuted at number twelve on the official US Billboard 200 album chart, remaining on the chart for thirty-two weeks.[14] E.L.E. peaked at the number two spot on the R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart, peaking inside the top fifty for thirty-five weeks.[15] In the United Kingdom, E.L.E. entered at number fifty-four on the official UK Albums Chart, charting for seven weeks.[16] On January 8, 1999, the album was certified Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for shipping 1,000,000 copies.[17]

Album cover[edit]

The album, and cover were influenced by popular disaster movies around the time of the album's release in 1998, primarily Armageddon and Deep Impact. Busta Rhymes explained that the cover was inspired by the disaster movie Deep Impact, showing his image of an asteroid hitting New York City.[18]

Track listing[edit]

Credits adapted from the album's liner notes.[19]

1."There's Only One Year Left!!!" (Intro) 
  • DJ Mr. Stanneke
2."Everybody Rise"3:02
3."Where We Are About to Take It"
4."Extinction Level Event (The Song of Salvation)"
5."Tear da Roof Off"3:38
6."Against All Odds" (featuring Flipmode Squad)4:20
7."Just Give It to Me Raw"3:03
8."Do It to Death"3:29
9."Keepin' It Tight"
10."Gimme Some More"2:41
11."Iz They Wildin Wit Us & Gettin' Rowdy Wit Us" (featuring Mystikal)
  • Darrell "Delite" Allamby
  • Kenny "Flav" Dickerson
12."Party Is Goin' on Over Here"2:34
13."Do the Bus a Bus"5:00
14."Take It Off"3:09
15."What's It Gonna Be?!" (featuring Janet Jackson)
  • Smith
  • Allamby
  • Antoinette Roberson
  • Darrell "Delite" Allamby
16."Hot Shit Makin' Ya Bounce"
17."What the Fuck You Want!!"3:17
18."This Means War!!" (featuring Ozzy Osbourne of Black Sabbath)
19."The Burial Song" (Outro)5:04
Total length:70:28


  • ^[a] signifies a co-producer


Chart (1998) Peak
US Billboard 200[20] 12
US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums (Billboard)[21] 2
German Albums (Offizielle Top 100)[22] 45
UK Albums (OCC)[23] 54
Canadian Albums (Billboard)[24] 34

Year-end charts[edit]

Chart (1999) Position
US Billboard 200[25] 49
US R&B/Hip-Hop Albums[26] 14


Region Certification Certified units/sales
United Kingdom (BPI)[27] Gold 100,000*
United States (RIAA)[28] Platinum 1,000,000^

* Sales figures based on certification alone.
^ Shipments figures based on certification alone.


  1. ^ Batey, Angus (October 2009). "My record collection – Busta Rhymes". Q. p. 46.
  2. ^ "Awards Nominations & Winners". 30 April 2017.
  3. ^ Torres, Eric (2020-10-08). "Watch Chris Rock Announce Busta Rhymes' New Album". Pitchfork. Retrieved 2020-10-08.
  4. ^ Grant, Shawn (2020-10-08). "Busta Rhymes Announces 'Extinction Level Event 2: The Wrath of God' for Oct. 30". The Source. Retrieved 2020-10-08.
  5. ^ Stephen Thomas Erlewine (1998-12-08). "Extinction Level Event: The Final World Front - Busta Rhymes". AllMusic. Retrieved 2014-06-30.
  6. ^ "CG: busta rhymes". Robert Christgau. Retrieved June 29, 2014.
  7. ^ Browne, David (1999-01-15). "Extinction Level Event -- The Final World Front". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2022-09-12.
  8. ^ a b "Busta Rhymes - Extinction Level Event: The Final World Front CD Album". Cduniverse.com. 1998-12-15. Retrieved 2014-06-30.
  9. ^ "Extinction Level Event (The Final World Front)". NME. 1998-11-07. Retrieved 2014-06-30.
  10. ^ Wallace, Emanuel (26 January 2010). "Busta Rhymes - E.L.E. (Extinction Level Event)". RapReviews. Retrieved 2 March 2023.
  11. ^ "Rolling Stone : Busta Rhymes: Extinction Level Event - The Final World Front". Rolling Stone. 1999-01-05. Archived from the original on August 28, 2006. Retrieved 2014-06-30.
  12. ^ Brackett, Nathan; Hoard, Christian David (2004). The New Rolling Stone Album Guide. Simon and Schuster. ISBN 9780743201698.
  13. ^ https://www.webcitation.org/query?url=http://www.geocities.com/Hollywood/Guild/8222/REVIEWZ/BUSTARHYMES.html&date=2009-10-25+08:04:02[dead link]
  14. ^ "Busta Rhymes - Chart history". Billboard. Retrieved 2014-06-30.
  15. ^ "Busta Rhymes - Chart history". Billboard. Retrieved 2014-06-30.
  16. ^ "Busta Rhymes | Artist". Official Charts. Retrieved 2014-06-30.
  17. ^ "Gold & Platinum Searchable Database - June 30, 2014". RIAA. Retrieved 2014-06-30.
  18. ^ Interview in radio program P3 Soul in Sveriges Radio P3 on 2008-09-07
  19. ^ Extinction Level Event: The Final World Front (booklet). Flipmode, Elektra. 1998.
  20. ^ "Busta Rhymes Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard. Retrieved 2013-09-18.
  21. ^ "Busta Rhymes Chart History (Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved September 19, 2013.
  22. ^ "Longplay-Chartverfolgung at Musicline" (in German). Musicline.de. Phononet GmbH. Retrieved July 24, 2013.
  23. ^ "Busta Rhymes | Artist | Official Charts". UK Albums Chart. Retrieved July 24, 2013.
  24. ^ "Busta Rhymes Chart History (Canadian Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved December 27, 2013.
  25. ^ "Busta Rhymes - Chart history". Billboard. Retrieved 2014-06-30.
  26. ^ "Busta Rhymes - Chart history". Billboard. Retrieved 2014-06-30.
  27. ^ "British album certifications – Busta Rhymes – Extinction Level Event: The Final World Front". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved July 23, 2022.
  28. ^ "American album certifications – Busta Rhymes – E.L.E. - Extinction Level Event". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved July 23, 2022.