"This eternal piano-playing is too much to bear! ... This shrill tinkling with no natural resonance, this heartless whirring, this ultra-prosaic banging and pecking — the fortepiano is killing all our thoughts and feelings, and we are becoming stupid, dull, imbecilic. This prevalence of piano playing, not to speak of the triumphal march of the piano virtuosos, is characteristic of our time and bears witness to the victory of machine over spirit. Technical proficiency, the precision of an automaton, the identification with strung wood, the sonic instrumentalization of human beings, is now hailed and praised as the highest good.”
— Heinrich Heine, Paris, 1843
Heine being a master ironist, this jeremiad should be taken with a grain of salt. Nonetheless, the resemblance to modern-day denunciations of encroaching technology is amusing.