When I play sound in any application, it skips/stutters and a message such as "ALSA underrun" is displayed in the terminal. (Exact message depends on the program, but all say this.) Some songs skip more than others.
MPD was stuttering really badly, until I added a line to the audio_output section of .mpdconf:
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With that, it still isn't perfect, but at least goes a few minutes as opposed to a few seconds without glitching.
Google shows all sorts of people having this problem with older versions of everything, but not the latest. MPD is version 15.8, kernel is 2.6.32-trunk-686 (squeeze), ALSA version 1.0.21.