Steam (Peter Gabriel song)

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Steam single.jpg
Single by Peter Gabriel
from the album Us
Released 5 January 1993
Format 7", 12", CD Single, Cassette
Recorded 1989–1992
Genre Funk rock[1]
Length 6:03 (album version)
4:44 (single edit version)
Label Geffen Records
Writer(s) Peter Gabriel
Producer(s) Daniel Lanois, Peter Gabriel
Peter Gabriel singles chronology
"Digging in the Dirt"
"Blood of Eden"
Us track listing
"Blood of Eden"
"Only Us"
Hit track listing
"Red Rain"

"Steam" is the second single from English rock musician Peter Gabriel's 1992 album Us. It reached number 10 on the UK singles chart, #32 on the Billboard Hot 100, and number 1 on the Modern Rock Tracks chart.

Peter Gabriel has said that the song is about a relationship in which the woman is sophisticated, bright, cultured, and knows everything about anything and that the man knows nothing about anything, except, he does know about the woman, and she doesn't know much about herself.[2][3]

An alternative version of this song called "Quiet Steam" was a B-side on the "Digging in the Dirt" single. It is a very lo-fi take on the popular version that appeared on the album. On Secret World Live, "Steam" is preceded for a minute or so by the "Quiet Steam" version.


The video for "Steam" was directed by Stephen R. Johnson, who also directed the videos for Gabriel's earlier hits "Sledgehammer" and "Big Time." The director said he wanted to cram the video with as many "things" as possible.[4] The video features digital imagery and numerous instances of sexual symbolism.

The "Steam" video won a Grammy Award for Best Short Form Music Video in 1994, as well as two MTV Video Music Awards in 1993, for Best Special Effects in a Video and Best Editing in a Video.

Track listing[edit]

All songs written by Peter Gabriel.[5]

  1. "Steam (LP version)" – 6:02
  2. "Games Without Frontiers (Massive / DB mix)" – 5:19
  3. "Steam (Oh, Oh, Let Off Steam mix 12")" – 6:44
  4. "Steam (Oh, Oh, Let Off Steam mix dub)" – 5:44

Production credits[edit]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Randall, Mac (10 July 2002). "Gabriel, Beck and Miller Struggle With Gravity". The New York Observer. Retrieved 23 January 2016. 
  2. ^ All About us video compilation, Peter Gabriel, 1993 (VHS format only)
  3. ^ All about... us header Steam
  4. ^ "Peter Gabriel, "Steam"". Pop-Up Video. VH1. Retrieved 2014-11-12. 
  5. ^ McDonald, Steven. "Steam - Peter Gabriel". Allmusic. Retrieved February 29, 2012. 

External links[edit]