It might not be a bad idea to see what might be worth looking into here. If it brings many or all of the nicer promised features of ALSA without the convolution or the twitchy nature of the emulation, I'd be all for returning to that interface. All I care about is a uniform way to pump sound out the sound chip on a machine and one that won't be blocked by a single application. OSS didn't do that at the time. That's why ESD and ARTS came into being- to help deal with that "problem". But they didn't get traction because they weren't universal; they were only available to you if you had GNOME or KDE, respectively, on your system. So, now, you have got 3 differing, competing APIs. ALSA came along, promising to fix most of the mess. It didn't quite deliver on it's promise and it's a bit difficult to code to/for.
All I care about is having something that is decent to code for and just simply works without me being blocked to play back sound. So far, nobody's come up with a consistent answer as far as I can tell.